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Bravery awards

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(Statement by the Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr. R. T. Smarts)

ti former T.A.A. helicopter pilot and a volunteer lifesaver have been

awarded decorations by the Queen for bravery during the search for the

late Prime Minister, Mr. Harold 'Holt.

They are . First Officer Keith Roy COTTEE, Margate Crescent, Glen Waverly, Victoria - George Medal -

Mr. Noel C . PBEiL, Fisher Parade, Pascoe Vale, Victoria - Queen°s Commendation for brave conduct.

The Minister for Civil Aviation (Mr. Swartz) said tonight

that while a T.A.A. helicopter was searching for the late Prime Minister

off Cheviot Beach, Point .epean, Victoria, on December 17, 1967, a cab in

cruiser assisting in the search overturned. The three occupants were

thrown throm into the sea and were sweat towards rocks.

First Officer Cottee returned to the beach, removed the door

from the helicopter and attached a rope to the undercarriage. He

returned with Mr. Car.,pbell to the capsized boat and, des pite groat

difficulty, lifted two men from the sea. The third :_:;n swan to a surf boat.

Mr. Swartz said that the citation stressed that .Firt First Officer.

Cottee.displayed considerable courage in the face o f severe weather

conditions and that Mr. Campbell had also played a vital role in saving

two lives.

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