Vale – Laurance Hazlewood


Laurance (Laurie) Kendall Hazlewood, MA (Syd), MA (ANU), 9 October 1923 - 28 June 2012, was a senior Geographer at Natmap, Canberra.


Laurie attended The Fort Street High School in Sydney and later served in 2 Field Survey Company during World War 2 before joining Natmap.


The following details of Laurie’s Wartime Army Service (1942-46) has been kindly provided by Charlie Watson:


A growing undergraduate interest in geography caused me to seek service in a Topographic Survey Unit once I turned 18 in October 1941. But not until May 1943 did I end up in the 2nd Field Survey Company, O.C. Major Clews, by then based in Childers, Queensland.


Straightaway I went to Iron Range, Cape York Peninsula, with No. 2 Section, taking part in 1:253,340 scale mapping by an inland group using astrofix and pace and compass traversing until we were recalled to Iron Range at the end of the year.


Next year (1944) I went back after leave in Sydney to the by then largely deserted Iron Range camp, until most of my section flew in from working at Merauke, in (Dutch) New Guinea, on 1 September. Then I went out again on an astrofix party working south of the 1943 'strat' mapping of the Weipa sheet until we all were recalled to Company HQ, now at Ingham.


In October (1944) we of No. 3 Section left Townsville for Lae, where the topographers worked marking up aerial photos, until I was flown with some others to Torokina, southern Bougainville. A number of us took ship for home leave, disembarking at Cairns on 6 August 1945 for the fateful week before re-embarking for Sydney, where we arrived on VJ Day 2.


The remainder of my time before discharge on 24 January 1946 was spent filling in time at the 13th Australian Field Survey Depot in Lane Cove, surrounded by stacks of topographic maps, ancient and modern, mostly working on the two University subjects I was allowed to study by correspondence.


Laurie will be missed by all who knew him.