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Carey, Frank (1913–1977)

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This entry is from People Australia

Frank Carey (1913-1977) railway cleaner, fireman, prisoner-of-war, locomotive driver and trade union leader. 

Birth: 1 October 1913 in Melbourne, Victoria, son of Henry Bernard ‘Harry’ Carey, locomotive fireman and driver, unionist, and Elizabeth Margaret, née Shaw. Marriages: (1) 1940 in Melbourne to native-born Rae Olive Taberner (1921-2008). They had one son. (2) 1975 in Melbourne, to Shirley Hebb. Death: 31 January 1977 at Preston, Victoria. Religion: Presbyterian. 

  • Joined Victorian Railways in 1935 as a cleaner at North Melbourne Locomotive Depot. 1937 elected secretary of Supernumerary Cleaners Vigilance Committee. In 1938 became a fireman.
  • Enlisted with Australian Infantry Force on 17 June 1940, serving with distinction as a sapper in the 2nd 10th Field Company in Malaya and Singapore where he became a Prisoner of War in March 1942 and worked on the Burma Railway — acquiring the sobriquet, ‘The Doctor’. He was discharged in Melbourne on 24 January 1946.
  • Rejoined Victorian Railways in 1946, becoming a locomotive driver and North Melbourne branch secretary of Australian Federated Union of Locomotive Enginemen. He was later Victorian divisional secretary for 20 years and federal president.
  • Played leading part in anti-Grouper forces in 1954-55, becoming president Victorian branch of the Australian Labor Party.
  • Cause of death: gastrointestinal haemorrhage, carcinoma of lung, asthma and emphysema.

Locomotive Journal
, May 1964, August 1964, April-June 1987.

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Carey, Frank (1913–1977)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 23 March 2023.

© Copyright Labour Australia, 2012