Lionel and Cynthia (nee Hicks) D’Cruze
|First name||Lionel and Cynthia (nee Hicks)|
|Country of Origin||India|
|Date of Birth||1927 and 1926|
|Year of Arrival in Australia||1971|
|Submitted by||Margaret D'Cruze|
Lionel and Cynthia, both Anglo Indians, had growing concerns for the future of their children, the eldest Richard, Austin, Adrian, Margaret and Delphine the youngest. At the time of arrival the children’s ages ranged from 13 years to 18 years of age. The situation in India for Anglo Indians had become politically and economically more challenging, leaving Lionel and Cynthia with great uncertainty about their children’s future.
Cynthia was instrumental in taking steps to migrate to either England, Canada or Australia. As people of great faith she and Lionel believed that God would determine where their new homeland was to be… and it does take much to work out that it was to be Australia.
Lionel arrived a few weeks before the rest of the family joined him, having secured a job shortly after his arrival. The plane trip over was filled with excitement of a better future and apprehension given the great distance and lack of knowledge about what lay ahead for the family… with the unexpected but joyous arrival of yet another child, Jeffrey … only a few months after our arrival.
As I accompanied my mother, brothers and sister I clearly recall our arrival in the early morning at the Tullamrine Airport, Melbourne on 4 May 1971. The cold and rain accompanied us all through the extremely long taxi trip from the airport to Moorabbin. The name of the suburb seemed strange, it’s pronunciation difficult. The silence on the way to Morrabbin was broken by the sobs of my mother, Cynthia, whose intermittent words captured what I am sure what we all must have felt … strange, abandoned, banished … for few people were to be seen and this was a shock for the family who had been reared in what then must have been one of the most densely populated cities in the world – Calcutta, India.
It didn’t take long for my brothers to also secure employment and both my sister and I went to Morrabbin High school, as my parents were unable to afford the fees for Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College. I clearly recall the challenges of those early days the family having been allowed to bring in only $7 per person. However, the generosity of neighbours and relatives who had arrived earlier greatly assisted the transition … especially in and around the birth of the youngest, Jeffrey in October of 1971.
The family have since had many members join them in Australia on both sides of the family – members of the D’Cruze family, the Hicks family and the Savyell family. The family members have since settled and flourished and happily continue to live their lives in what each considers to be a blessed country. We try and remember and live by the traditions handed down by our parents, who have since passed away … ever grateful to them for the incredible sacrifices they made, so that we could have the lives that we now enjoy.