Thursday, April 30, 2009

Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels to receive commemorative medals

Article from:  Australian Associated Press


FUZZY Wuzzy Angels, who provided vital assistance to Australian troops in Papua New Guinea during World War II, are to receive commemorative medals from the Australian Government.

The medallions would recognise their service and sacrifice, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said, adding they would be made available to surviving Angels or to their widows or widowers.

Two surviving Angels joined Australian war veterans at Mr Rudd's joint press conference with PNG Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare in Canberra.

"All of us in Australia know full well the enormous support, practical support and friendship extended to Australian diggers by the Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels," Mr Rudd said.

Some 55,000 PNG citizens served as civilians and carried supplies, built bases and airfields and evacuated the sick and wounded during fighting. Their contributions saved the lives of many Australians, Mr Rudd said.

The medallions will feature the image of a Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel helping a wounded Australian along the Kokoda Track.

Sir Michael said he was very proud to be in Australia for the announcement.

"Our people take great pride in the support they have given," he said.

PNG citizens can apply for the medallions through the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby.


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