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Official opening of the Paul McGinness terminal
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Official opening of the Paul McGinness terminal

Council honours Australian flying legend

News Article Date: 
Friday, 21 November 2014

Warrnambool Regional Airport’s terminal building has been officially named after World War I flying ace, Qantas co-founder and former South West resident Paul McGinness.

On November 21 the building became the Paul McGinness Terminal, following an official ceremony at the airport attended by members of the McGinness family and Qantas representatives.

Warrnambool Regional Airport Advisory Committee member Cr Rob Askew said the recognition at the airport of Paul McGinness, who spent the first 18 years of his life in the Warrnambool region, had received the approval of Mr McGinness’ relatives and Qantas.

“It’s appropriate that we’re able to honour Paul “Ginty” McGinness as a South West lad who grew up to not only serve his country with distinction in World War I but who had a profound impact on the emerging Australian aviation industry of the 1920s,” Cr Askew said.

Mr McGinness, born at Framlingham in 1896, served in the 8th Australian Light Horse Brigade at the beginning of World War I.

In 1915, at Gallipoli, he earned a Distinguished Conduct Medal for gallantry.

In 1916 after transferring to the Australian Flying Corps and the No.1 Squadron, McGinness flew on dozens of missions with observer Hudson Fysh. Both were awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.

After the war McGinness was instrumental in establishing Qantas.

McGinness left Qantas in November 1922 shortly after the first Qantas air mail and passenger flight, which he piloted from Charleville to Longreach.

After his time with Qantas he farmed in Western Australia then during World War II he worked for the RAAF in an administrative role.

He returned to farming after the war and died in 1955 at the age of 58.
 

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