Dulcie Jean Caddis (Cameron), 1926-2021: Cessnock's last surviving female World War II veteran

MUCH-LOVED: Well-known Cessnock nurse and World War II veteran Dulcie Caddis has passed away, aged 94.
MUCH-LOVED: Well-known Cessnock nurse and World War II veteran Dulcie Caddis has passed away, aged 94.

Cessnock's last surviving female World War II veteran has passed away at the age of 94.

Dulcie Caddis (nee Cameron) was also a well-known nursing sister, who worked at Cessnock District Hospital and at a local doctor's surgery for many years.

Born on September 29, 1926 at Ellalong, she started her nursing training at Maitland Hospital in 1944, aged 17.

She enlisted with the Royal Australian Air Force on December 28, 1944 as a sick quarter attendant/nurse known as Aircraftwoman Cameron.

She followed in the footsteps of her father Colin (Joe) Cameron, who served at Gallipoli in World War I, and her brother Reg, who was a pilot in World War II.

Aircraftwoman Cameron was discharged on October 9, 1945 as the war came to an end. She returned from her station in Melbourne to finish her nursing training at Cessnock District Hospital.

She married Jack Caddis in 1949, and had one daughter, Pamela. They lived on Aberdare Road, and Jack sadly passed away in 1976, aged just 49.

Dulcie was best known as "Sister Caddis", working at Dr Des Peate's surgery and Cessnock District Hospital for 23 years, until her retirement in 1994. For the last 10 years of her career she was in charge of Cessnock House, the women's geriatric unit of Cessnock Hospital.

Pamela says her mother simply loved looking after people.

"She loved working in the surgery, giving the babies their immunisations, and the personal contact with the patients," she said.

"Many of those babies, who now getting older, remember going there for their boosters.

"In the hospital she just loved looking after people and helping people get better, and caring for the elderly."

PROUD TO HAVE SERVED: Dulcie Caddis stood in her front yard at dawn on Anzac Day 2020, which would be her last dawn service.

PROUD TO HAVE SERVED: Dulcie Caddis stood in her front yard at dawn on Anzac Day 2020, which would be her last dawn service.

Dulcie was a member of the Cessnock RSL Sub-branch, and attended the Anzac Day dawn service every year.

With services cancelled in 2020 due to the coronavirus, she took part in the 'driveway at dawn' service at home.

"She never missed a dawn service and wasn't going to let COVID stop her. Little did we know it would be her last," Pamela said.

"She was loved by many people. She will be truly missed."

Dulcie passed away on January 17, and her funeral was held at St John's Anglican Church five days later.

She is survived by her daughter Pamela, two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Comments

Discuss "Passing of Sister Caddis"

Please note: All comments made or shown here are bound by the Online Discussion Terms & Conditions.