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14-September-2014
14-September-2014

Photographs supplied by Bryan Cole
A memorial commemorates three South Australia Police officers who lost their lives in a bushfire in January 1951.

ADELAIDE, Fri.—A police sergeant instructor and two police constables were burnt to death while fighting a bush fire near Upper Sturt, in the Adelaide Hills, this morning. They were Sgt. Instructor Cecil William Spark (43), married, of Kurralta Park; Special Constable Mervyn George Casey (22), unmarried, of Prospect, and Special Constable Colin Roy Kroemer (33), married, of Glenelg. The victims were members of a police party of 20 sent from the Adelaide police barracks equipped with knapsack sprays in response to a call for assistance. They were among others fighting a blaze in a gully when the wind swept the fire around them, cutting off their escape. After they had been reported missing, H. Eaton, of the Stirling emergency fire fighting unit, went into the fireswept gully and found the three bodies severely burned. Two of them still had knapsack sprays strapped to them. Two civilian fire fighters overcome by smoke were sent to hospital for treatment. The fire threatened many homes, but was confined to scrub and grassland.
Mercury (Hobart), 20 January 1951. 

Location

Address:Waverley Ridge Road, Crafers West, 5152
State:SA
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -35.006211
Long: 138.698876
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Disaster
Sub-Theme:Fire
Actual Event STart Date:19-January-1951
Actual Event End Date:19-January-1951

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Friday 28th April, 1995
Front Inscription

           Police Heritage Site
Near This Site The Following Members Of The
South Australia Police Force Perished While Fighting
A Bushfire In The Vicinity Of Foster Gully On 19 January 1951

Sergeant Cecil William Sparkes
Special Constable Mervyn George Casey
Special Constable Colin Roy Kroemer
This Plaque Was Unveiled On
            28 April 1995
                       By
   Mr. D. A. Hunt, AO, QPM  
   Commissioner Of Police
                     And
Mayor Anita Aspinall, BA
     District Council of Stirling

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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