Community facilities | March 08, 2017

The Nationals remember history of Hamilton Lamb

Current and past National Party members have gathered to acknowledge the service of Lieutenant George Hamilton Lamb, the only Member of Parliament to have died during active military service, as part of The Nationals milestone of 100 years of continuous representation in Parliament.

“The remarkable story of George Hamilton Lamb, who died a prisoner of war during World War II while serving as the Member for Lowan, is an important part of local wartime history and should be remembered,” Ms Kealy said.

During World War II, Hamilton Lamb enlisted in the Second Australian Imperial Force and sailed for the Middle East in April 1941. He was captured as a prisoner of war and sent to work on the Burma railway in Thailand.

Hamilton Lamb was listed as missing in action at the time of the Victorian State election in June 1943 and was re-elected unopposed to the seat of Lowan. He died in a Japanese work camp in Thailand on 7 December 1943 suffering from malaria, dysentery and malnutrition, with official notification of his death not received until 1 September 1944.

"As for every wartime contribution by our local servicemen and women, the detail of what these people saw, experienced and suffered is almost impossible to comprehend. They gave their all so that we can enjoy our peaceful lifestyle, opportunities and democracy in Australia today", Ms Kealy said.

"The Hamilton Lamb Memorial Hall in Horsham is a fitting tribute to the parliamentary and wartime service of George Hamilton Lamb, not just for his wartime efforts but also as a member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly representing the electorate of Lowan for the Country Party from 1935 until his death in 1943,” she said.

The Nationals Member for Lowan Emma Kealy MP, Member for Mallee Andrew Broad MP, past local Nationals Members of Parliament Hon. Hugh Delahunty and Hon. Bill McGrath gathered at the Hamilton Lamb Memorial Hall to remember the wartime contribution of Hamilton Lamb, and the milestone of 100 years of continuous representation in the Victorian Parliament.

“The Nationals began 100 years ago when a small group of Victorian farmers united because they believed country Victoria was too important for politicians to ignore”, Ms Kealy said.

“Since this time the party has gone by many names, first the Country Party, National Party and now The Nationals, but our commitment to regional communities has never changed.

“For 100 years we have been providing strong representation for our regional communities, fighting for our fair share of government support and ensuring Spring Street is well aware of the value country people contribute to our state. 

“George Hamilton Lamb made an outstanding contribution to our community, both as a parliamentarian and serviceman who made the ultimate sacrifice. It is essential that we remember his story, and be proud how he served the community he loved," she said.

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