A number of units were based at Daly Waters, including the American 46th Air Base Group and the 431st Ordinance Company. In 1942 evacuation flights from the Netherland East Indies came through to Daly Waters via Broome. The evacuees were looked after by the No.1 Medical Receiving Station, an RAAF Hospital Unit. In June 1942, the Daly Waters aerodrome was also visited by General Douglas MacArthur.
Jack Faulkner was a radio technician who was sent to Daly Waters fromVictoriajust as war was declared. “I don’t remember what time we landed (at) Daly Waters where I got a bed in the local “hotel”, made of galvanised iron, cement floors, flywire and canvas “windows”…War was declared 3/9/39 and very shortly the airforce began sending all their brand new Hudson bombers … there were only a couple of rifles among the airmen (who had smuggled them aboard against orders). There was not a machine gun a bomb or even a bomb rack among the lot …the planes were the very latest American type and the top brass had intended to fit British .303 turrets and British bomb racks but of course…British armaments were unobtainable. The crew loaded up with thousands of empty beer bottles from a dump behind the pub…they had been told that bottles made a screaming noise like German stukas when they were dropped, apparently sounded like bombs and burst on impact…I only hope they frightened some Japanese when they went into battle as that was all they could do”.