Rear Admiral Peter Hogarth Doyle

Deputy Chief of Navy (1981-1982)

Commander Australian Fleet (1980-1981)

RADM Peter Hogarth Doyle

Peter Hogarth Doyle was born in Lithgow, NSW on 27 September 1925 and educated at Caulfield Grammar, Melbourne, and Trinity Grammar, Sydney. He was one of twenty one 13-year-old boys selected to enter the Royal Australian Naval College at Flinders Naval Depot in 1939. He graduated in 1942 and joined the Royal Navy's Eastern Fleet serving in the cruiser HMS Kenya in 1943 and during the Burma campaign in World War II. Doyle was transferred to the destroyer HMAS Napier, and was promoted to Lieutenant.

He served in HMAS Anzac during the Korean War and was mentioned in dispatches: “He showed great ability and was most reliable in carrying out the duties of navigating officer though inshore operations during severe winter conditions proved an exacting test. He showed commendable coolness when the ship was taken under accurate enemy fire.”

Doyle met Anne Tracey, who worked with the blood bank, when she toured the Anzac during its visit to Melbourne. They married in 1953, after he returned from Korea.

As a Lieutenant Commander, Doyle served in the Far East Strategic Reserve, in HMAS Melbourne, during the Malayan Emergency. In 1961 he was Commanding Officer of the frigate HMAS Quickmatch and paid a diplomatic visit to Saigon in 1961. Promoted Captain in 1964, he was appointed in 1966 to command HMAS Perth, which was awarded the US Navy Unit Commendation for her work in Vietnam. Doyle was again mentioned in dispatches, “for devotion to duty in the presence of the enemy...”

Doyle headed the Naval Intelligence Directorate from 1968 to 1970, naval command in Western Australia from 1972 and, in 1976, Commodore Doyle commanded the navy's flagship and aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne. He was promoted Rear Admiral in January 1977 and appointed as Chief of Naval Materiel. He was Flag Officer Commanding the Australian Fleet during 1980-1981. Already an officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), he was made an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) and ended his navy career as Deputy Chief of Naval Staff during 1981-1982.

In his retirement he was a keen golfer, ACT chairman of the Queen Elizabeth II Trust and supporter of Legacy. His wife, Anne, died in 1996. Rear Admiral Peter Doyle passed away on 2 May 2007. He was survived by his three children, Stephen, Jane and Louise, and six grandchildren.