NURSE WILLA L. HOOK
CHIEF NURSE, BASE SECTION THREE
IN AUSTRALIA DURING WWII

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Nurse 2nd Lt. Willa L. Hook (N-703175), ANC, from Renfrow, Oklahoma had been one of the nurses at Hospital No. 1 at Bataan, in the Philippines and in the tunnels on Corregidor Island. On Wednesday 29 April 1942, Nurse Willa Hook was evacuated from Corregidor to Darwin from the Philippines on board US Navy PBY #7 with 18 other nurses. When they arrived at Mindanao they had to make a forced landing due to thick fog. 

When she first arrived in Australia she was attached to the 4th General Hospital and later appointed as Chief Nurse in August 1942.

The October 1943 edition of the Brisbane Military Telephone Directory, page 94, has the following entry for Nurse Willa L. Hook:-

BASE SECTION THREE

MEDICAL (Somerville House)
SURGEON'S OFFICE

Nursing Section:         Tel. No.
    Lt. Hook, W. L.       JLX 415

She is listed as Chief Nurse for Base Section Three in the index to that edition of the Military Telephone Directory.

The December 1942 edition lists her as Lt. Will. L. Hook in the Nursing Section.

Lt. Willa L. Hook had her quarters in Room 110 on the First Floor of Lennon's Hotel in George Street, in Brisbane.

 

Captain Willa L. Hook

 

She apparently would travel up to Darwin to meet and escort rescued American women and children from the Philippines and the Netherlands East Indies. Perhaps she took these rescued people to "Strathallan" Guest House at Lower Gay Terrace at Caloundra on the North Coast, now known as the Sunshine Coast. Willa returned to the Philippines in January 1945 and reunited with many of her nursing friends who had been prisoners at Santo Tomas in Manila.

Lt. Colonel Willa L. Hook (N593) married Lt. Colonel Herbert R. Suess on 2 October 1948 and became Lt. Colonel Willa Hook Suess.

 

REFERENCE BOOKS

"Angels of the Underground"

"Bataan Nurses" LIfe Magazine 15 June 1942

Orders for evacuation of 19 Nurses from Corregidor to Melbourne

The 42nd General Hospital in World War II

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Karen Nunan for her assistance with this web page.

 

Can anyone help me with more information?

 

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 Peter Dunn 2015

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This page first produced 7 November 2016

This page last updated 03 February 2017