Hello second cousin Leslie Dodds.
I have been searching for a connection to your branch of the family for years and have just stumbled across your contribution to this site.The only news I managed to find previously was the news of the death of Dallas William,who we always called Bill.
My name Is Robert Lee sinclair [nee Ian Maxwell plumbe}. i changed my name during a period when I was a stage actor.
i am the son of Wally Maxwell Plumbe the fireman who was killed in the fire engine roll over on a gentle s bend in Tamborine Bay Rd Lane cove in January 1940.
Well to go back to the beginning:
William Maxwell Plumbe was a seaman on windjammers who called at Sydney during a voyage.During his stay in Sydney he met and fell in love with a Scottish migrant girl named Annie Mcintyre Mcllenan, he jumped ship and married Annie Mcllenan.I still have their marriage licence.William worked as a miner according to their marriage licence.Annie died prematurely of leukeima in Sydney hospital. I still have her death certificate.
They lived in Newtown, Sydney and had two sons named Wally Maxwell and Dallas Maxwell.Wally married a girl named Dorothy Beck and they became my parents. Dallas married a girl named Charlotte and they became your grandparents.
Dorothy and Wally had two sons one of whom was named Leslie who died in infancy from diptheria. I am the other son named Ian Maxwell now aged eighty.
As you recorded my father was killed in an accident while travelling to a false alarm.
Dallas and Wally both joined the firebrigade.Wally had a period as an ambulance officer before he joined the brigade.I still have his cap badge.
When my father was killed my mother wanted to continue her single life so she dumped me with the family of your father Bill with whom I lived for several months at Ramsgate,before my mother somewhat grudgingly reappeared and took me back to live with her.
Your father Bill was a couple of years older than me as I recall and he was very nice to a lonely little orphan boy.He was like an affectionate older brother to me.
All the family including old grandfather William Maxwell who lived with them were very warm and friendly to me. .Far better than my own cold and authoritarian parents.Gradndfather used to take me to Ramsgate baths each day and that is when I taught myself to swim. I can remember after my first few successful strokes calling out to grandfather " Hey grandfather watch me" and I swam across the width of the baths.He smiled and nodded his approval.
Your father Bill was very patient with a younger me. He used to double me around on his pushbike and later taught me to ride.
I think that period with your father and his parents was the happiest of my life.They were such a nice, normal uncomplicated family.
I still have some photos of your grandparents and one where my mother is nursing one of Charlottes children who I think is probably your father.
I never found out why your grandfather Dallas took the family to live in Newcastle it seemed that some sort of crises prompted him.
It was shortly after the death of my father and perhaps that had something to do with it.
The day my father was killed your grandfather Dallas was called to Chatswood fire station to break the news to me.
I remember he took me aside and said"you have to be brave" and I said "is dad dead" and he said "yes".
Well Leslie that fills out your family oral history a little more.There is probably much more if you are interested, so let me know.
My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Cheers for now
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