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Text Box: ~ ~ Raye McLennan ~ ~
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RAYE GAYNOR LACKMANN was born in October, 1925, the sixth of the twelve children of Clarence and Ethel who lived on a wheat and sheep farm in the Mallee region of Victoria, Australia. She was one of seven sisters and five brothers who grew up in an era of prolonged drought in the Great Depression.† Times were hard but she never felt deprived, with the busy life of her family all around.

 

She was late learning to read, but when she finally
got the hang of it at nine years old, she didnít stop.†

She won a scholarship which allowed her to cont-
inue her schooling in Ballarat for year nine and ten,
then she attempted year eleven at Mildura at sixteen
years of age, but a lack of teachers during the war,
and the responsibility for two of her siblings prev-
ented her from completing the year.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Hospital matron

As part of the war effort, she subsequently worked
for the railways in Melbourne before joining the
Air Force at eighteen years old, where she became
a Morse Code operator.† After the war she trained
as a nurse at the Queen Victoria Hospital in Melb-
ourne, graduating in First Place in Victoria. She did
her Midwifery training in Sydney then worked in
Bacchus Marsh and Griffith before taking up the
offer to become the first Matron of the fledgling Robinvale
Hospital, which was built to serve the new Soldier Settlement town.