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b. 02/01/1909 Hunters Hill, Australia. d. 03/03/1991 Sydney, Australia.


DATE AND PLACE OF GC ACTION: 03/01/1921 Port Hacking, NSW, Australia.


Gibbs was born in Hunters Hill, New South Wales, on 2 January 1909. Leaving school, Gibbs later gained employment with the Gas Light Company, based in Sydney.


He was 18 years old and was returning to Port Hacking on a launch when he saw 8 children swimming. Mervyn Allum, Gibbs' girlfriend's brother, was suddenly attacked by a shark. At first it was thought he was drowning and Gibbs prepared to give assistance. Then the shark lifted him completely out of the water and Allum tried to push him off with his hands. Gibbs dived in and fought the shark with his hands, but it attacked Allum again and the water was red with blood. Eventually Gibbs succeeded in getting him away from the shark and, with help, onto the launch. The shark had taken all the flesh from the left leg to the hip clean off. He also had bite marks to the stomach and hands and was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital. This was the day after Gibbs 18th birthday.


On 9 February 1942, Gibbs enlisted in the Second Australian Imperial Force at Paddington for service during the Second World War. Allocated to the 35th Battalion as a private, he served in the army until his discharge on 28 December 1944, at which time he returned to his job with the Gas Light Company. In 1948, Gibbs married Doris Mannix.


























Stanley Frederick Gibbs AM

gibbs eastern suburbs 2 gibbs memorial

George Cross Memorial Park, Canberra

gibbs gc

“His Majesty The KING has been graciously pleased to confer the Decoration of the Albert Medal upon Stanley Gibbs of Sydney, New South Wales.


The following is an account of the services in respect of which the Decoration has been conferred:-


On the 3rd January, 1927, at Port Hacking near Sydney, New South Wales, a youth named Mervyn Allum was swimming a short distance from the shore when he was attacked by a large shark. It was at first thought that he was drowning, and Stanley Gibbs, who was standing on the nose of a launch he was driving, ready to give assistance to Allum, observed that he was being attacked by the shark. Gibbs dived from the launch and fought the shark with his hands and feet and eventually succeeded in getting Allum, who was very badly injured, from the jaws of the shark, and with the assistance of a man named Macdonald placed him in a rowing boat. The victim died of injuries shortly afterwards.”

8th February 1927 -

transcribed by Terry Hissey