No. 46 Winter 2012
Official publication for Returned & Services League of Australia Tasmanian State Branch (inc.)
28 Davey Street
Bishop Davies Court
27 Redwood Road
2 Guy Street
89 Club Drive
or visit our website at www.onecare.org.au
From the Editorial Desk 2
From the Presidents Desk 2
Chief Executive Officer’s Comment 4
Vice President’s Reports 5
State Welfare Coordinator’s Report 7
Images of ANZAC Day in Hobart 8
Navy Crew Suspected of Anglesea Cannon Liberation 10
DVA Goes Online in Tasmania 10
VALE Sergeant Blaine Flower Diddams 11
Australian Veterans Honour WWII Airmen 12
Unique Centenary Gift Returns Home 15
Boer War Comemorative Day 2012 15
RSL (Tasmania Branch) State Congress 2012 Table of Motions Considered 18
State Congress 2012 20
Around The Sub Branches 22
Serving Tasmanians 23
They Came To Say Goodbye 24
RSL Tasmania’s ‘Biggest Loser’ 25
Just Ask A Blonde 27
Australia’s Worst Maritime Disaster Remembered 28
Tasmanian Hospitality Association Awards Night 28
Book Reviews 30
The On Service magazine is produced
by the Returned & Services League League of
Australia (Tasmania Branch) Inc and
issued three times per year.
Submissions of articles of around
300 words, with accompanying
photographs (in digital format),
or items for the Notices section
are encouraged. Submissions
should be emailed to
or mailed to:
On Service, RSL (Tasmania
Branch), ANZAC House,
68 Davey Street
HOBART Tasmania 7000
Submissions should be free of personal views, political bias and must be
of interest to the wider membership of the RSL.
Short requests seeking information or contact with ex-Service
members are welcome for the Notices section.
All enquiries relating to On Service may be forwarded to RSL (Tasmania
Branch) Editorial Team of Phil Pyke on 0408 300 148 or to the Chief
Executive Officer, Noeleen Lincoln on (03) 6224 0881.”
We reserve the right to edit, include or refuse any submission. Articles based
on personal views will not be included unless in the form of Letters to the
Editor with name and address of the author.
Disclaimer: RSL (Tasmania) State Branch advises readers who are
contemplating agreements with advertisers in this magazine to seek
independent financial or legal advice.
Phil Pyke – Editor
Mobile: 0408 300 148
Noeleen Lincoln OAM – Chief Executive Officer
RSL (Tasmania Branch) - (03) 6224 0881
Publisher and Advertising Layout
Resilience Marketing Pty Ltd Warren Leahy
Level 1 Leftside Media
19 Magnet Court 76 Wentworth Street
SANDY BAY Tasmania 7005 South HOBART Tasmania 7000
(03) 6224 6888 0404 097 188
General Manager: Gail McCulloch
Cover: A photograph of wreaths laid at the Hobart Cenotaph on ANZAC Day
2012. Photograph by courtesy of David Dickson
RSL On Service
FROM THE EDITORIAL DESK
As we head towards a number of key
commemorations, including Vietnam
Veterans Day (18 Aug), Australian
Peacekeeper’s Day (14 Sept) and Remembrance
Day (11 Nov), it is always easy to overlook
one major date – the 5th of September or
the first Wednesday in September.
While I can image many scratching their
heads, it is the Battle for Australia – an
important commemoration around a
significant series of battles with 2012 being
the 70th anniversary of Battle of the Coral
Sea, Battle of Milne Bay, Kokoda Track
Campaign and the bombing of Darwin.
RSL On Service
The debate has always been about what
constituted the Battle for Australia as it
wasn’t about any single action or battle
but more a series – including Timor.
Critics, including a former Australian War
Memorial historian, believe there was no
single Japanese strategy, or coordinated
campaign, against this country and therefore
the commemoration is not relevant.
In undertaking some research recently, I
found out that the predominantly Tasmanian
2nd/40th Battalion lost 53 members in the
Japanese air-raid on Darwin - 53 casualties
before the Battalion even set foot in Timor,
becoming prisoners of war.
FROM THE PRESIDENT’S DESK
Welcome to the Winter edition of “On
Service”. Firstly I should say that it was
with enormous pride that I was elected to
the chair at State Congress last May. As
I am sure you are all aware, our previous
State President, Bill Kaine MBE stood down
having put in three years at the coal face.
Bill did a great job for the RSL in Tasmania
and the League in general and is still helping
where he can.
I stated in the lead up to the elections that
should I be elected, I would spend this year
concentrating on increasing membership.
By ANZAC Day 2013, I also intend to have
every Tasmanian who reads a newspaper
much more aware of what the RSL is and
what we do.
Currently we have 51 Sub Branches with
a fair number of those licenced to sell
alcohol and conduct commercial activities.
Because of the work done at the State Branch
over the last three years, every one of our
Sub Branches now has Tax Concession
Charity status and is required to spend at
least 50% of their profits on fulfilling their
charitable objects, ie: on welfare or patriotic
activities. All the Sub Branches are happy
with this, and it is a fact of which we can
all be extremely proud. These are the facts
that I intend to have known right across the
State by everybody who is not a member of
As members of RSL (Tasmania Branch) we
can all be very proud that we belong to what
I believe is the best charitable organisation
in the State. As well as fulfilling our
charitable objects it is also a fact that when
someone buys a poppy or an ANZAC Token,
100% of that income goes to the welfare
of our veterans, ex Service and serving
members of the ADF and their dependants.
None of this money goes on administration
costs, fuel costs or to meal expenses as is
the case with many other charities.
RSL (Tasmania) State Branch first gained
its Charter on the 25th April 1917. We are
just five ANZAC Days away from being 100
years old. The awful news is that if we do
not do something serious about increasing
our membership now, we may be in jeopardy
by the time we reach our 100 year mark.
This is because of several reasons. Firstly,
the WW2 and Korean veterans will be very
few in numbers. The Vietnam Veterans
will be mostly in their seventies and will
have done their share “at the coal face”.
Currently, of course, most of the Pension
Officer and Welfare Officer work is done
by the Vietnam Veteran generation. The
next problem facing us is the Peacekeepers
and Gulf war veterans are likely to still be
working an unable to take the reins. Veterans
returning from Iraq and Afghanistan will
want to get on with their lives and may
In many ways
the day is
relevant as it
v e r l o o k e d
Until next time
not join an
for many years
The solution, Chris Munday
as I see it,
is twofold. One; we have to educate the
newer veterans of what we have to offer,
and get them into the League earlier. Two;
we have to bring more Affiliate members
into RSL (Tasmania Branch). By now most
of us will be aware that to be an Affiliate
you must either have a blood relative who
wore a uniform, or are a Police officer or a
member of an Emergency Service. There is
also provision for a Sub Branch committee
to apply to State Branch for Affiliate
membership for somebody outside of these
guidelines. I believe this has only happened
for two individuals to date. Many Social
members of our Licenced Sub Branches had
blood relatives who served, but are reluctant
to become an Affiliate member because of
the “what’s in it for me?” syndrome. These
folk need to understand that by becoming
an Affiliate member they will be helping
keep the RSL in Tasmania alive well into
the future so that we can be there to help
veterans returning from current and future
Only a very small percentage of veterans
returning from recent conflicts will end up
residing in Tasmania. This is simple maths.
A fact is that currently over 80% of veterans
returning from Iraq and Afghanistan,
discharge in Queensland. Factor in all the
other States and that does not leave many
who choose to reside in Tasmania.
So, who will do the pension and welfare work
in the future? It can only be the veterans
who will be interested in such work, a few
of the remaining younger Vietnam veterans,
and the Affiliate members. So to the Social
members I say this – Instead of using your
local RSL as merely a place for a meal and
a beer, think seriously about doing your
part to make sure it survives well into the
future and that the work of the RSL remains
a constant for those who come after us. Not
only would we like to see those of you who
are eligible become Affiliate members but we
would also like you to think about becoming
more involved in the workings of your Sub
Branch. By this I mean putting your hands
up at committee level, and even considering
becoming a Pension and/or Welfare Officer.
I and the many volunteers throughout our
51 Sub Branches would all agree that getting
active and helping out at whatever level and
in whatever way, will make your life a much
happier one. It is a known fact that if you
do a bit of good in your community, you will
be a much happier human being.
So, to all our Social members, have a think
about the good you will be doing just by joining
in and if you fit into the above mentioned
categories for Affiliate membership ask your
Sub Branch Secretary to sign you up as one.
You will get voting rights in your Sub Branch,
you will receive this magazine posted to your
door and you will be eligible for the discounts
that are being offered not only by Tasmanian
businesses, but those discounts offered at
our National membership level such as the
Ambassador Card, Accor Hotels and others.
On that note, we at ANZAC House will be
concentrating very hard over the next three
months on getting Tasmanian businesses,
who we believe offer a good service or
product, to join in offering our members
Tasmania’s own REDLINE is the largest private coach operator in
the state. We offer a comprehensive range of charter vehicles to
business, schools, clubs, organisations and the individual.
Here are some reasons why you should charter our services:
• Accredited Passenger Transport
• Fleet Options from 10 to 62 seats and
2 to 5 star coaches.
• Five star coaches are fi tted with seat
belts, reclining seats, air conditioning,
toilet and video.
• A large coach with wheelchair access
• Our fl eet is backed by the company's
own workshop and mobile
maintenance crews in each of the three
• Drivers are fully accredited and we are
the only operator who employs its own
full-time driver training instructor
Work has already started on this and things
are looking very good indeed.
Lastly, please start wearing your RSL badge
wherever you go. Show you are proud to be
a member of the best organisation in our fair
Keep well and drive carefully.
RSL On Service
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cnr St John & Cimitiere Sts
Launceston 7250 TAS
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Devonport 7310 TAS
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This year I have spent consolidating the
administration behind the project of our Sub
Branches gaining their Tax Concession Charity
status and tidying up the loose ends which
resulted from that. I am very pleased to say
we only have one Sub Branch now outstanding
with its merger intentions and unfortunately
the delay on this one was unavoidable. Many of
you will be aware that the Federal Government
intends to introduce into Parliament a proposal
to form a new Australian Charities & Not-For-
Profits Commission (ACNC) which will take over
from the Australian Taxation Office in all those
areas relating to recognized charities. Our State
Branch lawyer is watching this one very closely
on our behalf and will keep me informed as to
any changes we may need to make in the future
regarding our reporting procedures.
Our State President, Chris Munday has
made mention in his column of bringing
your Social members across to Affiliate
Member status. I will not repeat his words
but wish to add one more consideration.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER’S COMMENT
RSL On Service
When I compile submissions to put to either the
State Government or to our National or other
State Branches which may result in financial
assistance to RSL (Tasmania Branch) it is
increasingly difficult to justify if I cannot show
that we are also helping ourselves.
Before I can request a larger amount of
sponsorship funds from ‘National pooling’ I must
be able to show an increase in our membership
numbers, because this is how ‘National pooling’
funds are distributed. At the end of the day it is
the Sub Branches who benefit from our income,
either directly or indirectly. The bottom line
ladies and gents is – help us to help you.
We are moving ahead with our plans to go State
wide with our offers of Corporate Sponsorships.
Brochures have been prepared and will be
distributed widely within the next couple of
We are continuing to bring more local
businesses into our RSL Discount Rewards
Scheme with some new businesses listed in this
Hearing Aid Clinics
I would strongly
all to continue
contacting a variety
of businesses in your
own areas and ask
Noeleen Lincoln OAM
them to come on board.
Only you can grow our list of benefits to our
members in Tasmania.
We continue to be very busy at the State
Branch and wonder what happened to that now
seemingly fictional thing we used to know as
‘quiet time’ which used to appear during June
and July each year. There is no longer any such
thing as ‘quiet time’ as the increased workload
is now very constant all year. At this point I
acknowledge the dedicated efforts of our staff and
volunteers who, despite the increase in workload
still manage to get through it all.
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FROM VIETNAM TO THE SOLOMON ISLANDS
REPORT FROM EASTERN VICE PRESIDENT -
Greetings to you all.
Firstly, I would like to thank all the Eastern
Division members who voted me into the
Vice President position.
I would like to pass on my good wishes
on behalf of Eastern Division to our outgoing
State President, Bill Kaine MBE for
his tireless work while in office. Happy
retirement, Bill. I would also like to welcome
our new State President, Chris Munday,
who I have worked with successfully over
the last five years in our Sub Branch roles.
My first call of duty was to attend a luncheon
at Fingal and present a life membership on
behalf of the State President to Prevost Mills
which was a great surprise to Prevost, and it
proves you can keep a secret in a small town.
Image and text courtesy of Department
P01388A 190x130 CMYK
Defence Service Homes
Not many people can say they have deployed
on two operations over 40 years apart but
I for also Keith attended Moodie, the Primrose it’s true. Sands Annual
luncheon in July which was well catered for,
Army Reservist, Keith celebrated his 61st
A Solomon good day Islands was had some by all. 43 years after his
time as a Tank Gunner in Vietnam.
I must thank your hard working State
He said he could not compare the two
Executive operations. Member for Eastern Division,
Terry Roe for his continuing efforts in
“Vietnam was an undeclared war,” he said.
visits. was an I active will be war attending going on as between many Sub the
Branch north and meetings south. with Here Terry in Solomon as possible. Islands
we are peace-keeping and trying to help the
any problems don’t
hesitate to contact either me or Terry.
During his Vietnam tour Keith was a Tank
Gunner in C Squadron with the Centurion
Keep tanks. well. During two different incidents in
1968 and 1969 his section was hit by land
Harry mines. Jager
“We had our share of good times and bad
times but no matter where you go freedom
costs. The day after the first incident in
1968, one of my mates, Mick Hannaford
was killed by a mine. The following year
in Long Hai, a guy in my tent, Jimmy Kerr
Home & Contents insurance for Veterans (their widows
or widowers) or ADF personnel who are:
• Entitled to use a DSH loan (whether used or not),
• Entitled to benefits under the Veterans Entitlement
Act 1986 (including AASM qualifying service), or
• Using the Defence Housing Assistance Act loan.
also died. War costs lives.”
Following Vietnam, Keith discharged from
the Regular Army but, feeling something
was missing, he joined the Reserves in
1987 and was posted back to C Squadron,
1 Armoured Regt.
“The recruiting officer told me they had
become a Reserve unit,” he said. “I was in
C Squadron in Vietnam — and I was one of
the first guys to go in as a Reserve member.”
Since re-enlisting in the Army, Keith has
spent time at Bandiana as an Everyman,
worked at the Olympics for ‘Operation
GOLD’ and is currently deployed to the
“I’ve been blessed to be able to travel around
with the Army and do different things. I‘ve
had the privilege of doing things others have
never done. The cream on the cake for me
would be to also do a Timor deployment
because of what my dad went through there
during the Second World War. He didn’t
‘Prev’ Mills (right)
talk much about it, but one day he told me
he was ambushed by the Japanese and had
to throw his Bren gun away to escape — and
was lost in the bush for two days.”
RSL On Service
To see if you are eligible
and to compare the
1300 552 662
Hello to all,
As mentioned in my last report, 2011 came
and went and here we are over half way
I hope everyone enjoyed the Easter break.
A great deal has happening around the Sub
Branches with most having had their Annual
Dinners/luncheons and of course held their
AGM’s. I have been lucky enough to attend
some of the AGM’s and Dinners however;
unfortunately due to person commitments
I have missed a few.
To the Secretaries of all Sub Branches I
remind you again to forward the dates
of your AGM’s and Annual Dinners to
the State Branch. It would help the Vice
Presidents in all divisions allocate their time
to give you a visit and attend the various
functions in their allocated areas. Please
assist by forwarding these dates onto myself
or the State Branch.
I was an absentee at the Penguin ANZAC
Day Services this year my son, Jason had
requested for the past few years that I attend
the Dawn Service with him in Melbourne.
I found the event very uplifting standing
outside the Shrine of Remembrance along
with 30-40,000 other people, in the rain. All
you could see were umbrellas and it looked
REPORT FROM VICE PRESIDENT NORTH EAST
DIVISION - GEOFF LEITCH
Lately I have had the pleasure of attending
both the Deloraine Sub Branch and George
Town Sub Branch annual luncheons. I
thank both Sub Branches for their warm
welcome and hospitality and congratulate
all those responsible for wonderful
I’d like to inform all Sub Branches in the
North East region that I plan to visit in the
coming months to carry out the perusal
of Sub Branch documentation, on behalf
of State Branch, in relation to our Tax
Concession Charity Status requirements.
On Sunday 14th October 2012 the Life
Members Luncheon is to be held at the
Longford RSL Memorial Club.
REPORT FROM VICE PRESIDENT NORTH WEST
DIVISION – KEVIN KNIGHT
RSL On Service
League Life Members; please put this date
in your diaries. For more information
please direct enquiries to Peter Woolford
at the Primrose Sands RSL Sub Branch.
A short while after State Congress the
State President, Chris Munday visited
the Launceston RSL and presented a Life
Membership to Mr Graham Pedder who
was unable to attend State Congress.
as though we were standing in a big tent
made of umbrellas. Despite the inclement
weather, it certainly did not deter the huge
State Congress was a great success and I must
express my appreciation for a job well done
by the Ulverstone Sub Branch. The dinner
at the Rowing Club was extremely pleasant
with a number of Junior Rowers waiting on
the tables. I am unaware of whether the
young rowers had waited on tables before
but they were very well organized on the
night. My wife Marlene had her share of
luck when it came to the raffles.
On Saturday the 26th of May the Burnie
RSL held their Annual Luncheon. Deputy
Premier Byran Green and the Mayor of
Burnie, Steve Kons were among the invited
guests along with State President, Chris
Munday and his wife Janet. I also attended
with my wife, Marlene as did the State
Executive Member, North West, Graham
Deacon and his wife Sharyn. I believe there
were about eighty guests in all and it was
pleasing to see some old friends and have a
chat. I noted that one old mate, Tom Wragg
was absent and I hope it was only a short
On Sunday, 27th May I joined State President,
Graham Pedder (right)
Chris Munday at a
special meeting at
the Smithton Sub
Branch with a view
to paving the way Kevin Knight
for the future and
ensuring the Sub
Branch remains viable. There was a good
mixture of members in attendance and it
appears as though a number of members
are prepared to step up and make the effort
to have the Sub Branch continue for the
benefit of all. We wish them well in their
I have reports of a large number of members
on the sick list we wish everyone a speedy
At the Penguin Sub Branch our long time
treasurer and Life Member Ted Howe has
taken up residence at the Coroneagh Park
Home for the Aged. At age 94, Ted still
looks forward to his time at the Penguin
Football Club. The Penguin Sub Branch
has lost two of its long serving members
in Bernard (Peter) Hanson (Life Member)
and Kevin Hunter (a fifty year member). We
pass on our condolences to both families.
As many of the North West members know
I have an interest in the RSL Lawn Bowls.
This year for the first time the AGM was
held outside Hobart at Longford with about
eighty members attending from around
the State - next the AGM is to be held at
Turner’s Beach. RSL Bowls is conducted
around the State at various venues if you
are a member of the RSL and are interested
in having a game of bowls, and enjoy the
friendly company of other RSL members
please feel free to contact me and I will pass
the information onto the contact member
REPORT FROM VICE PRESIDENT SOUTHERN
DIVISION – MEL COOPER
As this is my first article I want to take
this opportunity to thank the members of
Southern Division for electing me to this
position. I am very aware that the RSL in
Tasmania is at the crossroads and where
we go from here is going to take some
serious thought and decisions. If we are to
be effective in representing the needs of Ex
Service personnel we must grow our ranks.
Governments (no matter of what political
persuasion) only react to pressure if the
numbers are big enough. With that in
mind I would ask all of us to look to see if
you know anyone who should be a member
and to see if you can do something about
it. Another concern for me is the large
number of Social Members who could/
should in fact be Service or at least Affiliate
members. It is a fact that a Social member
With the advent of “Carbon Tax”, it is best we
all be sure that all our members know of the
new Essential Medical Equipment payment.
This payment is part of the Governments’
household assistance package, which
provides financial assistance to members of
the veteran and Defence community to help
meet the costs of living impact of the carbon
The Purpose of the payment is to cover the
additional costs of running essential medical
equipment (EME), or medically required
heating and/or cooling that may arise from
the introduction of a carbon tax.
The payment will be available for people
with medical needs or their carers who are
covered by an eligible concession card and
in the area you would like to play. The State
Executive of RSL Lawn Bowls has made
Affiliate members of the RSL welcome. For
an enjoyable social day out come along and
try a game of bowls with your mates.
As your representative on the State
Executive please feel free to contact me if
you have a problem that needs attention at
State or local level and I will do my best to
cannot contribute to the governance of the
League. Like any organization in today’s
world it costs money to do the things that
are required of us to make sure that the
needs of Ex Service personnel are protected.
As a Vietnam Vet I don’t want to see what
happened to us become the same for today’s
Servicemen and women.
As you may be aware it is the role of State
Branch to visit Sub Branches and see how
they are operating. This is not a “Big Brother”
action but simply a way of ensuring that all of
us are operating correctly and in accordance
with our ATO Deeds of Agreement. It
should be noted that even my own Sub
Branch will receive a visit. I am looking
forward to these visits as I am sure that I
will not only be satisfied that we are going
OK but by visiting others I will increase
STATE WELFARE COORDINATOR’S
REPORT – CHRIS MUNDAY
require specific equipment. Examples of
this equipment are CPAP machines, Oxygen
delivery machines etc.
There are quite a few appliances covered and
to find out if you are eligible for the payment,
please ring the Department of Veteran’s
Affairs. City callers please ring 133254, and
country callers please ring 1800 555 354. The
staff at DVA will be only too pleased to help
with any enquiries.
Finally, we at ANZAC House have a
competition running in conjunction with the
upcoming Veterans’ Health Week. About
now the Secretaries of all 51 Sub Branches
will have received the posters advertising the
event. Just in case the information does not
get out to you, as you may be hard to reach,
the completion is headed “RSL Tasmania’s
I can be contacted on phone
Mob: 0407-917187 or via PO Box 387,
My Email is firstname.lastname@example.org
my knowledge of
how best we can
serve those who
I look forward
to meeting as
many members as possible. Should you
wish to meet with me for any particular
reason when I visit you Sub Branch let your
Secretary know so that a meeting can be
arranged. Good luck for the future to all of
Greatest Loser” and yes,
it is about losing weight.
The competition runs
from the end of August
to the end of October
and the Prize is a beauty.
Call into your local Sub
Branch for details and join in.
Apart from the weight loss competition,
please be aware that the theme for Veteran’s
Health Week is “social inclusion”. So, try
to get out to see any ex or current serving
member who may not get visitors, and if you
don’t get a lot of visitors yourself, have a go
at visiting a friend and getting involved in
any events your Sub Branch may put in place.
RSL On Service
IMAGES OF ANZAC DAY IN HOBART
Dawn Service Service at the Peacekeepers Memorial – Anglesea Barracks
War Widows Guild ‘Field of Remembrance’ Floral tributes at the Cenotaph
RSL On Service
SORELL LAD MISSES LOCAL FOOTY CLUB
Photographs by courtesy of David Dickson (email@example.com)
Two years ago Fred Barratt was wearing the
blue and gold of the Sorell Eagles Football
Club. Now he is in Army camouflage and is
earning his living working with ammunition
Fred joined the Australian Army less than
two years ago, in March 2010, and already
he is on his first deployment to Afghanistan.
Initially, Fred didn’t put too much thought
into a career in the Army.
three weeks of joining the
Army, his brother, Cody
Barratt (two years older),
was also signing up.
After completing their
basic trade courses, the
brothers were both posted
to the 3rd Combat Service
Support Battalion at
as an Operator Supply
within the Field Supply
However, it was Fred
who was lucky enough to
have been nominated for
deployment with Force
“It was a spur-of-the-moment decision - I
was Contingent looking of for the something ship’s compliment different – HMAS and Darwin Support Unit Five. The tri-service Unit
something exciting,” Fred said. But within provides logistic and distribution support
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24 hours a day
“The people are great, really easy
to get along with. You don’t
know what is going to happen
each day – it is always different.”
to Australian force elements across the
Fred is currently based with Force Support
Team Kandahar Air Field, which is one of the
biggest US bases in Afghanistan. His role
encompasses data entry, issue and receipt
of ammunition in support of the Mentoring
Task Force – Three and Special Operations
Task Group. As part of his role Fred will also
have the opportunity to witness significant
amounts of demolitions and ammunition
“I can’t believe how quick things can change.
Almost within one year and I’m deployed to
While it is early days in his eight-month
deployment, Fred’s favourite experiences
so far have been his relationship with his
colleagues and the physical training.
“The people are great, really easy to get
along with. You don’t know what is going
to happen each day – it is always different.”
When Fred does get back home to Australia
next year, he is looking forward to spending
time with his mates in Townsville and also
making a trip home to Sorell during his post
“I just want to catch up with friends and go
to the Sorell Football Club.
Supporting Tasmanian families
in their hour of need
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NAVY CREW SUSPECTED OF ANGLESEA
A small wooden cannon, donated to the Anglesea
Barracks Sergeant’s Mess in 1956 by the HMAS
Wagga, and found two years ago in the Tower of
London before being returned by two Yeoman
Warders has gone missing again.
“The cannon was regularly “liberated” from the
Mess by members of Australian and allied ships,
squadrons and units, gaining a unique history,”
said President Mess Committee, Warrant Officer
Class One (WO1) Graeme Jones.
“It has traveled the world on the USS Missouri
and USS Carl Vinson, been taken on operations in
the Middle East and East Timor, passed between
US nuclear submarines under the Arctic ice and
been on many Australian, UK, US, Canadian and
“The cannon and base are covered with small
plaques detailing its travels and adventures.”
In 2009 the cannon was taken to London on the
HMAS Sydney. It was on board that a Yeoman
Warder liberated it from the Australians, taking
it to the Yeoman Warder’s Mess at the Tower of
London where it remained until it was decided
to return the cannon home after nearly a decade
“In 2010 two Yeoman Warders marched with
the cannon into Anglesea Barracks, presenting
it to the then RSM 12th/40th Battalion, WO1
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The return of the cannon by Yeoman Warders in 2010
John Stonebridge in front of assembled Mess
members,” said WO1 Jones
More recently members of the HMAS Melville
were in the Mess at the time the cannon was
noticed to be missing.
“Senior sailors of the ship’s company are our main
suspects but we know that as the cannon heads
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off yet again, it is not only adding to the history
of this very unique trophy but also raising money
for Legacy as well,” WO1 Jones said.
He said the Mess looked forward to hearing about
the cannon’s whereabouts and receiving the
“fines” of 20 cents per day which will go to Legacy.
which will be progressively rolled out across
Australia in coming months.
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VALE Sergeant Blaine Flower Diddams
Killed Afghanistan 2nd July 2012
Sergeant Blaine Diddams was killed during an
engagement with insurgents on operations in
Afghanistan on 2 July 2012. He was on a mission,
targeting an insurgent commander who was
known to be in the Chorah region at the time.
Sergeant Diddams was a very experienced
member of the Special Operations Task Group
and was from the Perth-based Special Air Service
Regiment (SASR). He was employed as a SASR
He is survived by his wife Toni-Ann, their daughter
Elle-Lou and son Henry, his parents Peter and
Cate, and siblings Nikki, Sian, Christian and Luke.
Sergeant Diddams was born in Canberra, ACT, in
1971 and enlisted in the Army on 24 April 1990 and
after completing his initial employment training
for infantry was posted to the 1st Battalion, Royal
Australian Regiment in Townsville, Queensland on
2 November 1990. Sergeant Diddams successfully
completed his SASR selection course and was
posted to the Regiment in 1995.
This was his seventh tour to Afghanistan since
2001, although he had deployed previously on four
occasions to Somalia, East Timor and the Solomon
Sergeant Diddams, ‘Didds’ to his mates was a
devoted family man and a dedicated professional
soldier. Known for his outwards personality and
quirky sense of humour, he was held in the highest
regard by his mates and comrades alike.
Sergeant Diddams has been awarded the following
honours and awards:
• Australian Active Service Medal with Clasp
Somalia, Clasp East Timor, Clasp ICAT
• International Forces East Timor (INTERFET)
• Afghanistan Campaign Medal
• Australian Service Medal with Clasp Solomon
Islands, Clasp ‘CT/SR’
• Defence Long Service Medal
• Australian Defence Medal
• NATO ISAF Medal
• Meritorious Unit Citation
• Infantry Combat Badge, and
• Returned from Active Service Badge.
During Sergeant Diddams’ service in the Australian
Army he deployed on the following Operations:
• Operation Solace (Somalia) – Jan – May 1993
• Operation Warden (East Timor) – Jan – Feb 2000
• Operation Tanager (East Timor) – February –
• Operation Trek (Solomon Islands) – 2002
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Nov 2001 –
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – May – Oct
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Jan – April
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – May – July
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Jun – Nov
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Jan – Jul 2011
• Operation Amulet (CHOGM Perth) – 2011
• Operation Slipper (Afghanistan) – Feb 2012 –
The members of the Special Operations Task
Group (SOTG) farewelled Sergeant Diddams
several days later in a moving Memorial Service
at Camp Russell.
SOTG Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Colonel
J, paid tribute to a well-respected and highly
experienced Special Forces soldier during the
service in Tarin Kot, Afghanistan.
“Today we farewelled a husband and father, a mate
and brother who will be forever missed but never
forgotten,” Lieutenant Colonel J said.
“He died doing what he loved in the only way he
knew how - to lead his men from the front. Blaine
was the relaxed professional whose quick wit and
sense of humour could turn a smile in even the
worst of situations. Blaine endeared himself to
everyone who knew him due to his quirky sense
of humour and love of a joke. He was a devoted
father and husband who lived life to the fullest.
He thrived on adventure and time with his mates
and he was the type of person that if you were in
trouble or on a winning streak, you wanted to share
the experience with,” he said.
The Memorial Service was held in Camp Russell at
Multi-National Base – Tarin Kot, before his casket
was moved to a waiting Australian C-130 Hercules
Soldiers from SOTG along with Australian,
Afghan and coalition forces personnel lined the
route to salute their comrade.
The Commander of Australian Defence Forces
in the Middle East, Major General Stuart Smith,
said the loss of Sergeant Diddams was deeply felt
by all ranks.
“Sergeant Diddams was an elite soldier, working
with a professional team, on a vital mission to
support security and safety for the people of
Uruzgan,” Major General Smith said.
“As a military family we mourn his loss, but we put
aside our grief to continue on important work in
Afghanistan as our tribute to his dedication and
Troops from Multi-National Base Tarin Kot line
the route to pay their respects to Sergeant Diddams
as members of the Special Operations Task Group
and military dignitaries accompany his casket to the
Chief of Army Blast for
To the Editor,
It was with the greatest disappointment and
dismay that I read Ian McPhedran’s article in
your newspaper this morning, releasing the
name of our most recent combat fatality before
official release by Defence and by his family.
The Army and the Defence Force have well
established protocols for the release of names
and personal details in these circumstances;
protocols with which your journalists are very
familiar but have clearly chosen to ignore.
The family in this instance, whose lives are
currently consumed with their own grief, had
asked Army to wait to release his details so that
they could deal with this terrible loss in their
way. You have robbed them of this right. Such
actions are unconscionable and un-Australian.
Our only concern is a desire to look after those
of the grieving family of a courageous soldier.
Their trust has been betrayed by the selfish act
of a journalist intent on being ‘the first’.
Chief of Army
04 July 2012
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AUSTRALIAN VETERANS HONOUR WWII AIRMEN
A memorial honouring 125,000 brave men who flew with Bomber Command
during the Second World War, including more than 10,000 Australians was
dedicated by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in London in June.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Warren Snowdon said more than 100 Australian
veterans of the campaign are among the hundreds of Commonwealth
veterans attending the memorial dedication.
“Veterans have travelled from across the globe including Canada, New
Zealand and Australia to be in London today for this significant occasion,
many returning to the UK for the first time since the war,” he said.
“I can only imagine what an emotional journey this has been for them; to
be standing alongside mates, remembering the 55,000 comrades who never
made it home to their loved ones.”
“Here in Australia, we will remember the 3,486 Australians killed flying
Bomber Command missions and the 650 who died in training accidents in
the United Kingdom,” he said.
Mr Snowdon said the dangerous missions flown by Bomber Command were
Australia’s costliest combat action of the Second World War.
“This new memorial is a fitting tribute to all those who fell against Italy and
Germany during the ventures of Bomber Command and I commend the
UK Bomber Command Association for its initiative in constructing this
“The Australian veterans and their comrades from across the Commonwealth
are doing us proud in the UK. The service and sacrifice of so many young men
in Bomber Command helped deliver victory in Europe during the Second
World War, and that will never be forgotten.”
Mr Snowdon said in addition to the memorial dedication, other activities have
taken place to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Bomber Command
including an Australian service at the Air Forces Memorial in Runnymede.
A further service was also held on Saturday at the Australian Memorial in
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AUSTRALIAN VETERANS HONOUR WWII AIRMEN
Tasmanian Veteran Joins Bomber Command
Les Boon RAAF
Les Boon from Howrah joined the
recent commemorations in the
United Kingdom alongside around
100 Australian veterans. Les
enlisted into the Royal Australian
Air Force in February 1943 at the age
of 18. After training in Australia as
a Wireless Operator Air Gunner, he
was posted to the United Kingdom,
where he served with No. 625
Squadron, Royal Air Force, at RAF
Kelstern, and No. 576 Squadron,
Royal Air Force, at RAF Fiskerton,
both in Lincolnshire. Two of his
missions with Bomber Command are
particularly memorable to him. The
first occurred on Anzac Day 1945 (his
squadron’s last operational mission,
although none of the squadron
members knew it at the time) when
the squadron bombed Berchtesgaden,
Hitler’s country retreat.
The second was a mission flown as
part of Operation MANNA to drop
desperately needed food supplies to
starving Dutch civilians.
As Les’s aircraft turned for home after
dropping its load of food supplies, the
crew was moved to see a huge sign on
the ground reading ‘THANK YOU’.
Les was discharged from the RAAF in
December 1945 in the rank of Warrant
Officer and returned to civilian life to
build a career in both the public and
private sectors, as well as being self
employed. Married for 63 years, Les
has three children, ten grandchildren
and four great-grandchildren, all of
whom are very much the centre of
Les has been active over many years
in a number of social, charitable and
service clubs, including the RAAF
Association and the RSL. Of his time
in Bomber Command, Les recalls the
general commitment to service and
the desire to get the job done.
Les Boon - Today
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BARRACK HILL – A History of Anglesea
Barrack Hill is a fitting tribute to the vision
that Governor Lachlan Macquarie had for
the barracks site he established on his tour
of Van Diemen’s Land in 1811. Meticulous
research by John Lennox and John Wadsley,
accompanied by an amazing collection of
24 hours a day,
7 days a week
images maps and plans, has resulted in a
work that comprehensively details each
stage of Anglesea Barracks’ history in a
manner that also pays respect to many of
the individual lives and stories enmeshed in
Tasmanian self-government, as w
events such as the Boer War and
20th Century world conflicts. B
also introduces readers to the
military roles the site has housed
the manufacturing of rope in the
German immigrant rope maker
of schools and a girls’ reformato
Sections of the book on the British
that occupied the site up until
not only how those regiments
to broader military history of
but also introduce us to some of
forgotten individuals of those
including Jeremiah Corbett o
Regiment of Foot who carved det
spent in the Military Prison on h
There is also the unnamed youn
the 18th regiment who marrie
permission and left with his
promising to return to his wife
child when his enlistment was u
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UNIqUE CENTENARY GIFT RETURNS HOME
Charles Elliott and Alice King during WWI
As Australia heads towards the Centenary of
ANZAC, the 12th/40th Battalion, the Royal
Tasmania Regiment (12/40 RTR) has already
received a unique gift direct from the United
In 2010, the then Commanding Officer 12/40 RTR
received a letter from a Dr Chris Elliott in York,
UK offering to return the WWI medals of his
grandfather, Lieutenant Colonel Charles Elliott,
back to the unit.
Tasmanian born Elliott led the 12th Battalion
through WWI after the first CO was killed on
the beaches of ANZAC on that first day. He was
wounded at Gallipoli and nursed by his future
wife Alice King - also from Hobart, on board the
“Here we have an amazing history, which was
more than just medals, donated as part of a very
substantial collection to the Royal Tasmania
Regiment by Dr Chris Elliott,” said CO 12/40 RTR,
Lieutenant Colonel David Hughes.
The collection was passed to Operations Officer
12/40 RTR, who was the contingent commander
for UK based Exercise LONG LOOK in 2011, and
bought back to Tasmania.
“The collection contains personal letters, diaries,
photographs and both the medals of Charles
Elliott and his wife, including their MBE’s.”
“Alice King has her own unique story too – being
on the hospital ships to and from Gallipoli and
working at the casualty clearing stations on the
Western Front. It is rare to have a couple with
such a combined history – and they did know
each other prior to WWI.”
Lieutenant Colonel Hughes said it was a privilege
for the Battalion to be entrusted with this
During an April 1917 surprise attack by the
Germans at Lagnicourt that threatened the
battalion’s headquarters, Elliott quickly organized
the defence using batmen, cooks and signallers
and checked the enemy’s advance, thus enabling
the counter-attack to drive the enemy back. His
action at this critical point turned what might
have been a defeat into a victory.
Charles Elliott married Alice King in London in
1917. However the newly wed Mrs Elliott had to
immediately leave the Australian Army Nursing
Personal diaries reveal key dates of April 25th
1915 and November 11, 1918 – with Charles
having his teeth fixed on Armistice Day.
Mentioned in Dispatches three times, he was
made a Commander in the Order of St Michael
and St George as well as receiving a Distinguished
Service Order and Bar and the Légion d’honneur.
Other operations that Elliott took part in during
1917-18 included Hill 60, Polygon Wood, Strazeele,
Zonnebeke and Broodseinde.
Many times between May 1917 and February
1919 he temporarily commanded the 3rd Infantry
Brigade for short periods. In the post WWI period,
he was appointed the CO of 2nd Battalion, 40th
“This is one of the most complete collections I
have ever seen of two amazing people,” Lieutenant
Colonel Hughes said.
“We have to catalogue it all and I hope that we can
display it somewhere all Tasmanians will have the
opportunity to see it – especially as we reach the
centenary of ANZAC in three years time.”
Chief Clerk 12/40 RTR Warrant Officer Class
Two Tina Rossi shows Ms Airlie Ward from
ABC 7.30 through the collection
“The Battalion has a strong history with many
Battle and Theatre Honours plus stepping up to
contribute to current and future operations and
exercises. But it is important to remind ourselves
of the contribution and sacrifices of our forebears
while at the same time looking to the future.”
The story of the Elliott collection can be found
online at: www.abc.net.au/news/2012-04-27/
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BOER WAR COMEMORATIVE DAY 2012 JU
It’s the time of year when Blondie
is all out of anecdotes, wise words
and details of life’s little moments.
All that is left to do is for her to wish
each and every one of her readers
The annual Tasmanian Boer War
Commemorative Day (BWCD) was conducted
in two centres in June, the first in Hobart and the
second in Launceston. The motto of the BWCD
is simple, “To Honour those who Served”. It was
the tenth time in Hobart such an observance
was held and the sixth in Launceston.
“Nurse Orr was an amazing person. She not only
served with great distinction during the Boer
War, but she was an outstanding nurse during
World War One. On one occasion she was in
charge, as Sister Orr, of the hospital ships at
Gallipoli,” said Mr Watson.
“She was a marvellous daughter of Tasmania
and it was great to see a memorial to honour her
and other nurses unveiled,” he said.
The plaque was sponsored by the Royal Hobart
Hospital Graduated Nurses Association.
In Hobart, the proceedings occurred at the
impressive Boer War Memorial, Queen’s
Domain. The public attendance was high, with a
number a very of wreaths safe, laid. healthy The Clarence and City happy Band
provided the musical accompaniment while re-
Christmas Season and a wonderful
enactors - SSAA Militaria Collectors Tasmania
took and the prosperous salute and filed New a volley. Year. Eight members
of the 22nd Light Horse Association attended
with Until Lone 2012……. Piper being Mathew Driessen. The
MC on the day was Mr Tony Scott. Mr Reg
Watson gave the address.
“The best Hobart event ever,” added Mr. Watson
The Launceston service was held the following
Sunday at the Boer War Memorial, City Park.
In giving the address, Mr Watson spoke of the
bravery of the Australians, which included
Tasmanians during the Elands River siege,
where they held out from overwhelming odds
for a fortnight.
Betty and Marj played cards every day at their Sunnyside Retirement
Home. They had been playing cards every day for years and were
both now well into their 80s. This particular day, as usual, they had
been playing cards for an hour or so, chattering away and laughing as
The they Organiser always of the did. event, Then historian all and went author silent. The silence lasted about five
Mr minutes. Reg Watson, Betty said that said to to herald Marj the “are 110th you alright? You’ve gone very quiet”
anniversary Marj looked of the at ending her of friend The Anglo-Boer with a blank expression on her face and
War (1899-1902) a plaque to the memory of
Nurse eventually Orr was unveiled said “well in Hobart, yes and jointly I by know this sounds awful, but I can’t
himself remember and Alderman your name? Helen Burnett what of is the it again?” There was another moment
Hobart of silence City Council. and then Betty said “how soon do you want to know?”
The Launceston RSL City Band was present;
cadets of the A Coy Tas AAC BT made up the
Catafalque Party, while Mr Gary Fitzallen gave
the scriptural reading with Dr Frank Madill
acting as MC.
Mr Watson said both ceremonies were highly
successful. So as not to coincide with the long
weekend in Launceston next year (2013), the
northern event will be held on the last Sunday
in May and not the second Sunday in June.
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RSL (TASMANIA BRANCH) STATE CONGRESS 2012
TABLE OF MOTIONS CONSIDERED
Amendments to RSL (Tasmania Branch) Inc. State
Constitution (As this motion was very lengthy with
a lot of amendments being simple renumbering of
paragraphs, the intent of the motion is produced in
simplified terms for production in this magazine)
Motion (in simplified terms) - That the RSL
(Tasmania Branch) Inc. State Constitution be
amended to make provision for a Divisional
restructure and change to positions on the State
Executive with effect from 2013 as follows:
There will be three Divisions only; those being
North East Division, North West Division and
Southern Division. Eastern Division will be
The administration of the affairs of the Branch
shall be vested in and exercised by the State
The State Executive shall consist of the State
President, the Deputy State President, the Chief
Executive Officer, the Honorary State Treasurer,
the three (3) Divisional Vice Presidents and two
(2) State Executive Members. The position of
State President, Deputy State President and Vice
Presidents shall be filled only by Service or Life
Members. The positions of Chief Executive Officer,
Honorary State Treasurer the two State Executive
Members may be filled by a Service Member,
Life Member or Affiliate Member of the Branch.
There shall be not more than four (4) members of
the Executive who are Affiliate Members of the
Where an Affiliate Member is a member of the
State Executive the Affiliate Member shall be able
to speak at the State Executive on all matters and
shall vote on all other motions other than those
for the amendment of the National Constitution
or the Branch Constitution.
The position of Honorary State Treasurer or any
State Executive Member position may be held by
a person who is a Service Member, a Life Member
or an Affiliate Member so long as there shall at no
stage be more than four (4) members of the State
Executive including the Chief Executive Officer
who are not Life Members or Service Members.
The new State Executive shall assume office at the
end of the relevant Annual Congress (May 2013).
The State Executive as soon as possible after its
appointment shall appoint two (2) persons as
members of the State Executive. Such persons
RSL On Service
a. be Service, Life or Affiliate Members of the
b. shall, in the opinion of the State Executive,
have relevant skills, qualifications and/or
experience that will assist the State Executive
in the carrying out of its activities. The
appointment of such persons shall be until
the end of the next Annual Congress and such
persons shall be able to be further reappointed
to the State Executive for further terms.
Elections are to be held annually for the following
The State President, the Deputy State President,
the Honorary State Treasurer, and three Divisional
Vice Presidents, who shall be voted by the Sub
Branches in the relevant Divisions.
The Branch is obliged to indemnify a Branch
Officer, members of the State Executive and the
Chief Executive Officer against loss or expense
incurred by the discharge of his or her duties as a
Branch Officer, a member of the State Executive
or a Chief Executive Officer unless such loss or
expense has been incurred by their own willful
neglect or default.
The original motion in its entirety was moved by
State Branch, seconded by Ulverstone and was
Motion - Amendment to State Constitution
Rule 10.9 (h)
Amend Rule 10.9(h) (i) to read:
(i) An Affiliate Member may not be elected to
the position of President (League member) of a
Sub Branch (save and except for the provision of
Rule 10.9(h) (iv). An Affiliate Member may not be
elected to the position of Vice President (League
member)of a Sub Branch, but may be elected to
the positions of Vice President (Affiliate), (if such
a position has been made available pursuant to a
decision passed at an AGM of that Sub Branch);
Secretary, Treasurer or committee person on the
Sub Branch Committee.
Insert new Rule 10.9(h)(iv)
(iv) Notwithstanding other provisions in these
rules and subject to a resolution by a 75% majority
of an Annual General Meeting or Special General
Meeting of the members of a Sub Branch; in the
case of a traditional or remote Sub Branch where
no Service or Life member is able to fill the
position of Sub Branch President (League), the
State Executive may agree to fill the President’s
position with an Affiliate Memberon the proviso
that it is for a maximum term of 12 months, and
during that 12 months the Sub Branch must take
all action possible to find a suitable Service or Life
member to fill the President position for the 12
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Lenah Valley
1. VETERANS’ AFFAIRS MATTERS
1.1 Entitlements for Partners or Next of Kin of
Gold Card Holders
Motion - That this Congress requests the
Department of Veterans’ Affairs make provision
for the partners or next of kin (NOK) of Gold Card
holders to accompany the pensioner at public
expense when the pensioner is required to travel
interstate for operations or treatment if such travel
is for three days or more.
Moved: Tasman Seconded: Glenorchy CARRIED
1.2 Department of Veterans’ Affairs
Motion - That the Department of Veterans’
Affairs be requested to review their employment
guidelines/policy to ensure that personnel who
answer telephone enquiries from members of
the veteran community understand and have
the ability to converse fluently in the Australian
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Launceston
1.3 Retraining Entitlements under MRCA/
Motion - That the Department of Veterans’
Affairs be requested to initiate amendment to
the Legislation/Regulations to provide for past
qualification and potential to be taken into
account, as well as the type of employment
being undertaken at the time of the injury, when
considering retraining entitlements under MRCA
Moved: Launceston Seconded: George Town
1.4 Veterans’ Entitlement Act 1986 – Non
Warlike Operations in Singapore/Malaysia
Motion - That the RSL recommends that
the appropriate legislation be amended to
have the service of all Australian Defence
Force personnel who served on non-warlike
operations in Singapore/Malaysia from 12
August 1966 to 14 March 1975 recognized for
the purpose of obtaining entitlements under
the Veterans’ Entitlement Act 1986.
RSL (TASMANIA BRANCH) STATE CONGRESS 2012
TABLE OF MOTIONS CONSIDERED
Moved: Ulverstone Seconded: Wynyard
2. SOCIAL SECURITY AND TAX
2.1 Indexation of Military Superannuation
under DFRDB and MSBS Schemes
Motion - This Congress strongly supports the
position of Returned & Services League of Australia
Limited that the indexation of all components of
Military Superannuation under the DFRDB and
MSBS schemes be calculated by an indexation
regime matching cost of living increases.
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Lenah Valley
2.2 Incremental Adjustments to Veterans’
Motion - That all rates for Veterans’ Disability
Pensions be adjusted by the same increment that
was granted at the time for the Single Rate of
Service Pension in the 2009 Budget which was
by 2.7% increase of MTAWE (Male Total Average
Moved: Greater Hobart Seconded: Lindisfarne
5. THE LEAGUE
5.1 Inclusion of a Preamble to Standing Policy
Motion - The Returned & Services League of
Australia (Tasmania Branch) Inc. endorses the
extant Standing Policy of the Returned & Services
League of Australia Limited and recommends that
consideration be given to including a preamble to
the Policy along the lines of:
“In no other calling, occupation or profession is
an individual required to perform their duties
24 hours per day, seven days per week, 365 days
per year, go wherever the Government of the day
decides Defence personnel are needed and to sign
a blank cheque, up to and including the value of
their life, in pursuit the National political agenda.
The State has the right to demand the surrender of
the inalienable human rights of service men and
women as recognized in the Universal Declaration
of Human Rights adopted by the General assembly
of the United Nations in 1948 and to which
Australia is a signatory. Military Service in this
respect is unique as is the obligation this places on
the State to look after the interests of members of
the Australian Defence Force both during service
and as a consequence of such service.”
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Launceston
6. ANZAC, COMMEMORATION,
CEREMONIAL and MEMORIALS
6.1 Penalty for Desecration of the Australian
Motion - That this State Congress bring pressure
to bear on the RSL National Executive to address
Federal Government in the strongest possible
terms to ascertain what actions, if any have been
taken against those personnel responsible for the
desecration of the Australian National Flag during
the recent incident in Canberra (tent embassy issue)
and, in accordance with the law, Government must
ensure that such penalty as is legally appropriate
be enforced for future incidents.
Moved: Primrose Sands Seconded: South Arm
6.2 Provision of ‘Out of Service’ Military
Weapons to RSL Sub Branches and Clubs
Motion - That this State Congress supports a
program whereby ‘out of service’ military weapons
are donated free, or at minimal cost to RSL Sub
Branches who wish to display them.
Moved: Scottsdale Seconded: George Town
6.3 Declaration of Sincere Appreciation to
Fallen Service Men and Women
Motion - This State Congress, on behalf of the
members of the Returned & Services League of
Australia (Tasmania Branch) Inc., declare our
sincere appreciation to the more than 104,000
thousand Australian service men and women
who have paid the supreme sacrifice to protect
our nation and the freedoms we enjoy on a daily
basis. Political correctness and culturally sensitive
issues were not part of their agenda and, as we
commemorate the sacrifices they made to secure
our future, nor should it be on ours.
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Launceston
8. CONDITIONS OF SERVICE
8.1 Transportability of Employer Contributions
to Military Superannuation
Motion - That the Australian Government be
requested to remove the current limitations placed
on the transportability of employer contributions
to Military Superannuation compared with that
enjoyed by the rest of the Australian community
by the following actions:
· The Government to transfer a separating
ex-service members full superannuation
entitlements, including the employer
contribution, to a provider of their choice when
they leave the Service;
· Allowing separating ex-serving members of the
ADF and their new employers to contribute to
MSBS for the remainder of their working lives.
Moved: State Branch Seconded: Lenah Valley
12. AUSTRALIAN YOUTH
12.1 Voluntary Emergency Service Training
Scheme for Youth
Motion - That this State Congress encourages the
Federal and State Governments to implement a
Voluntary Emergency Service Training Scheme
Moved: King Island Seconded: Huon
15.1 Hosting of RSL (Tasmania Branch) Inc.
State Congress 2013
Motion - That the George Town RSL Sub Branch
Inc. hosts the 2013 Annual State Congress of the
RSL (Tasmania Branch) Inc. in May 2013.
Resolved, with the dates of Congress to be
Friday, 17th – Saturday, 18th May 2013.
A. Changes to Australian War Memorial Roll
Motion – That the Tasmanian RSL State Congress
supports the motion that the Australian War
Memorial change its criteria for inclusion on the
Roll of Honour from killed in action or, in the
modern bureaucratic sense, dying on war-like
service, to include those who have given their lives
on peacekeeping (non-warlike), post armistice or
Moved: Greater Hobart Seconded: Huon
B. Future Direction of RSL (Tasmania Branch)
Motion – That the Tasmanian RSL State Congress
supports the motion for the establishment of a
working party, under the State Branch, to consider
the future direction of the RSL in Tasmania.
Moved: Greater Hobart Seconded: Lindisfarne
RSL On Service
STATE CONGRESS 2012
There were 37 Sub Branches represented with 73 delegates. There were 15 motions debated, with 10 carried, 4 lost and one withdrawn. A list of motions
carried at the Congress is shown separately. These motions now form part of the National Congress agenda to be held in Sydney in September.
During the Official Opening of Congress the following League Awards were presented:
Mr Stephen Dobson Dunalley
Mr Peter Bruce OAM South Arm
Mrs Marie Kays OAM Lenah Valley
Mr Archie Alomes Sorell
Mr Prevost Mills Fingal (presented locally)
Mr Graham Pedder Launceston (presented locally)
State Certificate of Appreciation
Mr Stephen Cocker OAM
Miss Carol Batten
Results of the ballot for State Executive 2012
State President Christopher Munday
Deputy State President Mr Peter Woolford JP
State Treasurer Mr Wayne Cargill
North Eastern Division Vice President Mr Geoff Leitch
North West Division Vice President Mr Kevin Knight
State Executive Member Mr Graeme Deacon
Eastern Division Vice President Mr Harry Jager
State Executive Member Mr Terry Roe
Southern Division Vice President Mr Mel Cooper
State Executive Member Mr Robert Dick
Bill Kaine MBE
RSL On Service
The 97th Annual State Congress was hosted by the Ulverstone RSL Sub Branch and was held on the
11th /12th May 2012 at the Ulverstone Civic Centre, Ulverstone.
The Hon Scott Bacon MP, State Minister for Veterans’ Affairs officially opened Congress. Other
dignitaries and official guests included Rear Admiral Ken Doolan AO RAN (Retd), RSL National
President, the Hon Warren Snowdon MP, Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Senator Michael Ronaldson,
Shadow Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Alderman Jan Bonde, Mayor of the Central Coast, Mr Ian
Campbell, Secretary - Department of Veterans’ Affairs and Ms Jan Hyde, Deputy Commissioner of
Veterans Affairs – Tasmania.
RSL official guests included Mr Don Rowe OAM, Deputy National President and State President – RSL
NSW, Mr Terry Meehan, State President – RSL Queensland, Mr Jock Statton OAM, State President
– RSL South Australia, Mr Chris Perrin JP, CEO – RSL NSW, Mr Chris McHugh csc, CEO – RSL
Queensland, and Mr Mike Annett csc, CEO – RSL Victoria.
There were 37 Sub Branches represented with 73 delegates. There were 15 motions debated, with 10
carried, 4 lost and one withdrawn.
A list of motions carried at the Congress is shown separately. These motions now form part of the
National Congress agenda to be held in Sydney in September.
Delegates and guests during the Business Session of Congress
STATE CONGRESS 2012
The Congress Dinner was held at the Ulverstone Rowing Club. We pass on
our congratulations to the kitchen staff and volunteers for a superb meal and
service. We also wish to sincerely thank all the junior rowers who provided
outstanding table service during the evening.
At the close of Congress former State President Bill Kaine MBE stood down
after a three year term in office. Bill was presented with a framed Sydney
Swans jumper signed by the 2012 team and his wife, Margaret was presented
with a sheath of flowers as a thank you from the State Branch team.
Pictured below with Mr Don Rowe OAM, Deputy National President, and the Hon Scott Bacon MP, State Minister for Veterans’ Affairs
are the recipients of Life Membership
Mr Stephen Dobson – Dunalley Sub Branch Mr Peter Bruce – South Arm Sub Branch
Mrs Marie Kays OAM – Lenah Valley Sub Branch Mr Archie Alomes – Sorell Sub Branch
RSL On Service
AROUND THE SUB BRANCHES
An afternoon tea was held at the Lindisfarne
RSL clubrooms on the 29th May 2012 which was
well received by all who attended.
Mr Keith Farrell gave a very interesting address
and visual display on his time on Catalina’s
during the WW2 and the Catalina Museum at
Lake Boga in Victoria.
During the course of the afternoon the Sub
Branch President, Mr Robert Fisher presented
Long Service Awards (50 Year Certificates) to
a number of members. Receiving the awards
were Mr Max Arnold, Mr Alan Reed, Mr
Geoff Farrington, Mr Robert Oliver and Mr
John Viney. Mr Colin O’May also received the
award but unfortunately was unable to attend
What: 40th Reunion of the 42nd Intake
When: 8-10 February 2013
Where: Canberra - Eastlake Football Club
Varies - visit http://42ndintake.homestead.com/
RSL On Service
Contact: Don Hogarth
What: 40th Reunion of the 42nd Intake
When: 8-10 February 2013
Where: Canberra - Eastlake Football Club
Contact: Don Hogarth via email
firstname.lastname@example.org or 0438 641 043
The 12th annual Reunion of the First Frigate Flotilla (1946-1956), HMAS Condamine, HMAS Culgoa, HMAS Murchison, HMAS Shoalhaven will
be held in Canberra on the 2nd – 5th November 2012. All ex-crew members plus their relatives and friends are warmly invited to attend.
For further information please contact George Franki on Ph: (02)9955-9444,
or mail at 9/6 Waverton Avenue, Waverton NSW. Email: email@example.com
(L-R) Mr John Viney, Mr Max Arnold, Mr Rob Oliver, Mr Geoff Farrington, Mr Alan Reed
7 Wellington (Wellington's own) Hawkes
Bay Battalion Group
Alpha Coy 7 WnHB Reunion
5 – 7 October 2012
Open to all past and current serving Regular and Territorial Force members posted or
attached to Alpha Coy. Interest can be registered with SGT Su Gingles on 0064210383835 or
email firstname.lastname@example.org for a registration form.
HMAS Leeuwin - 42nd Intake Reunion
HMAS Leeuwin -
42nd Intake Reunion
PLAYING AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE MIDDLE EAST POEM
“Ogilvie High School is the first school in
“I like it best when up on the bridge doing
the State to book the Avenue Discovery Box,
The and following I’m sure poem the students was written of Ogilvie for the will be
warfare manoeuvres with other naval ships
Captain Bryce Duffy was killed on operations
Anniversary amazed in Afghanistan on of their the journey Bombing
on 29 of of
October discovery Darwin
via voice or Morse code light.”
WW2 the ultimate by Andrew sacrifices Guild. these brave young
Captain Duffy was a member of the Mentoring soldiers Task made,” Force Mr – Three McKim and said. was from the
Thomas 4th Field completed Regiment, his schooling Royal Regiment at St of Australian Artillery (RAA) based in Townsville.
Virgil’s High and Elizabeth College before “The THOSE State Government WHO FOUGHT has AT been DARWIN a strong
Captain Duffy is survived by his partner, parents
joining the Navy in 2009.
supporter and of family. the restoration of the Soldier’s
Captain Duffy was born in Sydney, NSW, in ‘Twas 1984. Memorial on He the was Avenue 19th educated February over in Brisbane. ‘42 time, and He today’s joined
“I joined the Australian because at Defence the time Force three Academy of my in That launch January the deadly represents 2003 Japanese and completed a reaffirmation struck a Bachelor of our of
mates Science. had been He in graduated for a while from and the I liked Royal Military Catching support, College our and in soldiers of December the unawares program’s 2006. He educational was then
what posted I was hearing to 1st Field every Regiment, time they Royal came Australian value
Poor Darwin Artillery in the Tasmanian
was based out of in luck Brisbane. community.
home He on served leave, with cashed the up 1st and Field full Regiment of stories between “I’d 2007 like and to 2010. pay He tribute was transferred to the RSL to the for
Nick McKim MP with school students Gabrielle Jacobs about and Tuscony 4th their Field Ohl.
travels Regiment to places in Townsville like Japan in and January Planes their 2011 with valuable as the red discs Assistant contribution bombed Operations and strafed in making Officer,
Tasmanian students are now able to access America.” - A before replica his Australian second deployment Infantry Force to Afghanistan Killing
this in important September.
a reality and
a new education kit to teach them about
also to the Tassal Group Ltd, which has
Sinking defenceless ships in the harbour
uniform Captain Duffy was a well known and highly-regarded young officer. He was recognised
local war history thanks to the efforts of Anzac departed on 14 July, for a generously supported the project. This
by his commanders for his strength of character, And at determination the city itself they and did diligence. strike His peers
the Friends of Soldiers Memorial Avenue six-month - Rations and deployment a personal to kit the (cutlery Middle and East really is a fantastic resource and I’m sure
remember him as an officer who maintained the highest possible personal standards.
and the RSL.
Area sewing His of Operation selfless kit)
will be the inspiration for historical studies
dedication (MEAO) to where duty the was demonstrated Our by Tasmanian daring by young the fact students men that ran he to for their had many volunteered
guns years to
The Minister for Education and Skills, the ship’s - Medals, for company his badges second will and tour conduct other of duty artefacts maritime in Afghanistan
To come.” at short notice, after a fellow officer was
shoot at the Japs with their flak
Hon Able Nick Seaman McKim Thomas MP, Sherrin, recently who launched grew security - Biographical wounded operations in information action. that include about maritime soldiers To knock down those planes right out of the sky
duty in interception commemorated Captain operations Duffy on has the been as Soldiers’ part awarded of Memorial the following Who honours had dared and to come awards: and attack?
a variety of resources for schools including
the Middle East as a member of the crew of Operation Avenue and Slipper. photographic resources
a replica Australian Infantry Force uniform, •Australian Defence Medal
rations the Royal and Australian a range Navy of posters, frigate, medals, HMAS - Materials on commemoration through the
The ship will support missions involving Over a few weeks, the Japs returned
•Meritorious Unit Citation – 1st Mentoring Task Force – Afghanistan 20 January to
badges Anzac. and other memorabilia.
30 October counter 2010 piracy and
And served it to us quite rough
Thomas “In Tasmania plays an we important greatly role value as history theatre - A tree security round from operations a replaced as part dead of tree the But the Aussies determinedly fought back
•NATO Non Article 5 Medal with clasp – International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
as one a of discipline the ship’s and communicators want our students and to Australian Defence Force’s contribution to And showed that they too, were tough
showing tree rings
understand the really important events and
is responsible for maintaining the operations
in the MEAO.
dates in history, why they have occurred and Mr McKim said that the important historical Later on in New Guinea we met
ship’s computer network, general voice •Australian Active Service Medal with clasp International Coalition Against Terrorism
how decisions were made,” Mr McKim said resource would be a valuable addition to
But this time we bloodied their nose
at communications the launch at New systems, Town Primary the satellite School. the resources available for schools studying
And fighting the Japs on a battlefield green
“We connection also want and history communications to connect students with the During Great War Captain from Duffy’s a Hobart service community in the Australian Army he deployed on the following
The legend of Kokoda arose
to other their ships. local communities and help them perspective. operations:
understand history within a real life context. “It also •Operation adds to the SLIPPER awareness (Afghanistan) of the Soldiers – January 2010 – October 2010
The “It’s Avenue pretty rewarding Discovery when Box, you developed have the by
We remember the brave men of Darwin
Memorial Avenue – which is the largest
the knowledge Friends of that Soldiers what you Memorial are doing Avenue, is is surviving
– February Those who 2011 bled for us in forty two
another keeping fantastic the ship connected opportunity to for the students outside It’s also •Operation the second SLIPPER largest (Afghanistan) Memorial Avenue – September To our heroes 2011 – of October the North 2011. who fought and died
in the in Australia where trees are planted for We A replica offer a military heart-felt uniform salute is to worn youwhich
significance of war from a local perspective.”
student, Nick Golley.
maritime environment,” Thomas said.
those who died. It will be extremely useful
The Discovery Box – contained in a 1917 for students undertaking inquiries into Andrew Guild
pattern Medical Kit – includes:
World War One, Australian and Tasmanian
LEST WE FORGET
RSL On Service
03 6248 5383 Studio Rear of 22 Newtown Road Hobart
RSL On Service
be of particular value in the context of
the Australian History curriculum, which
schools have started to implement” said Mr
The kit will be made available to schools for
a week on a basic booking system, with the
contents varying depending on age group.
Are the proud service providers for
Sitro, Gasmate and Chimeneas Chapala
RSL On Service
THEY CAME TO SAY GOODBYE
On the 10th June 1966, 5 RAR were on patrol
with National Policemen and South Vietnamese
soldiers. A pair of enemy mortars were engaged
and destroyed. When 10 Platoon neared the area
they were engaged by another enemy mortar.
The location of the mortar was observed and
the patrol radioed for an air strike, which struck
the mortar’s location with cluster munitions
and napalm, but not before Corporal Brendan
“Danny” Coupe and Private Les Farren were
killed and four soldiers were wounded. For his
leadership in this and the action on the 3rd June,
Second Lieutenant (2LT) Dennis Rainer was
Mentioned in Despatches.
After the noise had stopped and the dust had
cleared, Corporal Brendan “Danny” Coupe and
Private Les Farren of 10 Platoon, D Company, 5
Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (10 Pl, D
Coy, 5 RAR) had been Killed in Action, 10 June
1966. Four other members of the Platoon had
been wounded and the young soldiers, mostly
National Servicemen had tasted to worst part
10 Pl continued the remaining 10 months
of the 12 month tour with many successful
actions against the enemy. Unfortunately, the
Platoon lost another member, Private Graham
Warburton, Killed in Action - 1 October 1966.
Since returning to Australia, the remaining
members of 10 Pl have taken the opportunity to
formally farewell Privates Les Farren and Graham
Warburton, but have never been able to assemble
for Corporal Danny Coupe’s farewell. Last year, it
The Original 10 Pl, D Coy, 5RAR. Colin Illman, Launceston, 2nd from the left. Dennis Rainer, MC
RSL On Service
was decided that an all out effort should be made
to formally farewell Danny. During this year’s
Queen’s Birthday weekend, those of the original
10 Pl and partners, where possible, came from all
over Australia to do so.
The group stayed at the Marriott Courtyard Motel,
North Ryde; close to Macquarie Park Cemetery
where Danny now lies. The commemorative
weekend started on Friday evening with a “Meet
and Greet”. This was followed by a sumptuous
Candle light Memorial Dinner on the Saturday
evening, and on the Sunday morning, a Memorial
Service was held at Danny’s grave site at 1100hrs.
That afternoon, the group then met at the
Chatswood RSL Club for Danny’s Wake.
The weekend was full of laughter, tall tales from
the past and, at different times, heavy hearts and
tremendous emotions. During Saturday evening’s
dinner, Frank “Doc” Donovan (Company Medic
1966-67) informed those attending how his
recount of Danny as a father, soldier and great
mate was one of many contributing factors in
establishing the VB “Raise a Glass” appeal. It
was the embodiment of this uniquely Australian
spirit as exemplified by Danny which led to the
unbelievable amount of money raised (nearly
$5 million to date) by the appeal. Doc’s speech
finished with an emotional toast to “Fallen
Comrades”. Guest speaker, Roger Wainwright
(Platoon Commander 8 Pl, C Coy 5RAR 1966-
67), toasted the Royal Australian Regiment and
Graeme Ashton gave a toast to the “Ladies”.
The after dinner address was given by Dennis
“The Skipper” Rainer, MC, (MID). Dennis was
the Platoon Commander during 10 Pl’s tour of
On Sunday morning at 1100hrs, members of
the Platoon and Danny’s family and friends
gathered at his graveside to formally farewell him.
Chaplain (Colonel) Peter Hayes from Victoria
Barracks, Paddington and Bugler Lance Corporal
Tim Dain from 23 Field Regiment Band, Royal
Australian Artillery added to the occasion with
their kind attendance and professionalism.
Eric Leask, OAM (PTE Regular 1966-67) read
the Regimental Ode, Ross Hore (PTE National
Serviceman 1966-67) followed with the RSL Ode.
Colin Illman (PTE National Serviceman 1966-
67) led the service with the Regimental Payer.
At the completion of the service and after many
photographs, the gathering adjourned to the
Chatswood RSL for Danny’s Wake.
Col Lee and Col Illman at memorial dinner
Special thanks go to the management and staff
of the Courtyard Motel, Chaplain (Colonel) Peter
Hayes and Lance Corporal Tim Dain who kindly
volunteered their services on a Queen’s Birthday
long weekend, their presence was so welcomed.
The former members of 10Pl D Coy 5RAR farewell
their mate, Danny
Thanks to the Chatswood RSL for their wonderful
hospitality and a special thankyou to Mr Bruce
Tyrell, AM from Tyrell’s wines and Mr Clinton
Taylor from Taylor’s wines, their kind donation
helping keep the cost of the weekend under
This was, indeed, a great weekend and a fitting
manner to farewell Danny.
“Lest We Forget”
RSL TASMANIA’S ‘BIGGEST LOSER’
Veteran’s Health Week begins on Monday, 22 nd October 2012 and finishes on Sunday,
28 th October 2012.
RSL State Branch has decided to bring a little fun to this year’s Veteran’s Health Week with a
competition to see which Ex- Service person can lose the most weight between the 28 th August
and the end of Veteran’s Health Week. Current serving members are eligible and welcome to
These posters have arrived at all RSL Sub Branches on the same day so nobody has any
advantage over anybody else.
The idea is simple. Get yourself Weighed-in at your local Sub Branch, Doctor’s Surgery or
Chemist. There must be two witnesses attesting to your weight. The witnesses cannot be your
relatives. Similarly, at the Weigh-out date there must also be two witnesses who both sign. Any
document stating your weight at the beginning and end of the period will be accepted. The two
signatories attesting to the “Weigh-in and Weigh-out” need not be the same two people. The
sooner you are weighed, the better chance you have of winning.
Weigh-in begins any time after Tuesday, 28 th August 2012 and “Weigh-out” (to see how much
weight you have lost) must be on or not later than Sunday, 28 th October 2012. All entries must
be received at the State Branch by close of business on Wednesday 31 st October and the State
Branch decision is final.
All participants must be weighed in socks, trousers and shirt (or dress/slacks and shirt for the
girls) only. Any person found with “weights” in their pockets or on their person at “Weigh-in”
will be disqualified.
You could win a one way trip for two people on ‘The Ghan’ railway, in a Gold
Class twin share compartment. The trip can be from Adelaide to Darwin or from
Darwin to Adelaide. The trip has been donated by Great Southern Railways and is not
transferable. Nor can it be exchanged for a return trip for one. Travel costs between Tasmania
and the point of departure and the point of return for the rail trip are the winner’s responsibility.
The trip can be taken any time within 12 months of the date of winning.
So, after Weigh-in - get walking and eat healthily to maximize your chances of winning.
Please, let’s not forget that the theme for this year’s Veterans’ Health Week is “Social Inclusion”.
You may consider calling in on somebody who may not receive many visitors as you go on your
Let’s have a go at losing a few kilos and have a bit of fun doing it.
Get healthy and keep well.
Your State Branch Team
RSL On Service
FOR THE CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN
OF EX-SERVICE MEN AND WOMEN
The Australian Veterans’ Children Assistance Trust is a
not-for-profit organisation. AVCAT administer
scholarships to help children and grandchildren of the
Australian ex-service community with the costs of
full-time tertiary education. The most deserving
candidates are selected on merit and who, without our
help, would be unable to start or complete studies
without financial difficulty.
For more information or to apply, contact
T 02 9213 7999 or 1800 620 361 (voicemail)
E email@example.com www.avcat.org.au
APPLICATIONS OPEN AUGUST 18
RSL On Service
Photo courtesy of the University of Adelaide
IT ALLOWED ME TO
BEST DOCTOR I
THE PROPOSED NATIONAL WORLD WAR I AND
WORLD WAR II MEMORIALS IN CANBERRA
After nearly 100 years, Canberra is likely to have
memorials dedicated to World War I and World
War II. The Memorials Development Committee
was established in 2005 to achieve this goal. After
an international design competition, a stunning
design from architect Richard Kirk was chosen.
The memorial design and further information can
be seen at: www.mdc.org.au
Australia’s greatest wartime casualties occurred
during World War I and World War II when over
101,000 servicemen and women paid the ultimate
sacrifice while serving our Nation. This represents
98% total wartime casualties in all conflicts to
The memorials themselves are to be very personal
and intimate, as they will contain etched excerpts
from diaries, poetry and letters. This information
is meant to tell the very personal story of the war
through the eyes of those who participated. This
JUST ASK A
As I’ve aged, I’ve become kinder to myself, and less critical of myself. I’ve
become my own friend.
I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they
understood the great freedom that comes with aging.
Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4
AM or sleep until noon on Sundays? I will dance with myself to those
wonderful tunes of the 60’s & 70’s, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep
over a lost love, I will. I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched
over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose
to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old.
I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as
well forgotten - and I eventually remember the important things.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and
to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face.
group includes (but is not limited to) soldiers,
sailors, airmen, merchant mariners, POWs,
nurses and those who remained home.
It is these particular experiences, recorded in
letters and personal papers that will connect
strongly with descendants of veterans and their
families. Data for the memorials is being procured
through a range of sources including many
In addition, the Memorial Development
Committee is seeking letters, diaries and
poetry of those touched by World War I and
World War II for possible inclusion on the
proposed memorials that you may have at
If you would like to have your relatives or friends
documentation considered for inclusion on the
memorials, here is the process.
Step 1. Send only copies of material….not originals.
Step 2. On the document, please write the
following sentence and sign your name.
“I certify that this copy is authentic and give
permission for the Memorial Development
Committee to use its contents for the proposed
Send WW ONE documents to:
PO Box 226
FRANKLIN, TAS, 7113
Send WW TWO Documents to:
PO Box 1024
MAWSON, ACT, 2607
So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair
could turn silver.
As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other
I don’t question myself anymore. I’ve even earned the right to be wrong.
I like getting old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I
am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste
time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be.
And I shall eat dessert every single day if I feel like it!!
RSL On Service
AUSTRALIA’S WORST MARITIME DISASTER REMEMBERED
A new memorial marking Australia’s worst
maritime disaster, the sinking of the Montevideo
Maru during the Second World War, was
unveiled at a ceremony at the Australian War
Memorial at the beginning of July.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Warren
Snowdon, and Minister for School Education,
Peter Garrett, said today marks 70 years since
1,054 Australian prisoners of war (POWs) and
civilians lost their lives in the tragedy.
“I encourage all Australians to take some time
today to pause and reflect on the service and
sacrifice of the Australians who lost their lives,
and the grief and suffering of the families and
loved ones left behind,” Mr Snowdon said.
“To ensure the families of those lost have a
place of solemn reflection to forever honour
their loved ones, the Gillard Government
has provided $100,000 towards a national
memorial. The sinking of the Montevideo
Maru is a tragic chapter in Australia’s wartime
history and I hope, through this lasting tribute,
Australians will continue every year to honour
TASMANIAN HOSPITALITY ASSOCIATION AWARDS NIGHT
Over the past two years all RSL Tasmania
Branch licensed Sub Branches have joined the
Tasmanian Hospitality Association (THA).
THA provides the committees of our Sub
Branches with excellent advice and information
on all facets of Licensing & Gaming, Human
Resources and Work Safe practices, to name
On the 14th May 2012 the Association hosted
its Awards night which was held at Wrest Point.
This Year THA introduced a new Award for
Excellence under the category of Best RSL Club.
The award was judged on the presentation of the
venue, service and quality of meals, friendliness
of staff and there were several ‘mystery visits’.
RSL On Service
On 22 June 1942, 1,054 Australian POWs and
civilians in Japanese captivity at Rabaul on the
island of New Britain (now known as Papua
New Guinea) boarded the Montevideo Maru.
Unaware that the vessel was carrying Allied
prisoners, on 1 July 1942 the Unites States
submarine USS Sturgeon fired torpedoes at the
Montevideo Maru, sinking the ship and killing
all those imprisoned on board and most of the
crew. It was not until after the war in October
1945 that a nominal roll of those on board was
uncovered. These records were presented to
Australia by the Japanese Government earlier
Mr Garrett represented the Prime Minister
at today’s event in his role as Patron of the
Rabaul and Montevideo Maru Society. “My
grandfather Tom Garrett was one of those on
board who lost their lives. He owned a coco
plantation near Rabaul, the capital of New
Britain, and was imprisoned by the Japanese
army after they gained control of the island in
January that year,” he said.
“Like many other families, my family was
not given the details of the sinking until the
The winning RSL venue was the Lenah Valley
RSL Sub Branch.
Mr Michael Glidden, State Manager of
HOSTPlus (left) presented the award.
Accepting the award on behalf of the President
of the Lenah Valley RSL is the Sub Branch
Treasurer, Noel Sargent (right).
war had ended. They lived with three years of
uncertainty before learning of my grandfather’s
death. It’s hard to imagine the grief and trauma
of those families who had no knowledge of
their loved ones’ fate and no way of mourning
their loss. Now 70 years on, it is fitting that
we remember and honour those 1535 souls on
the Montevideo Maru, who lost their lives a
long way from home, and whose memory and
sacrifice the nation can now cherish.”
The complete list of missing prisoners from the
ill-fated Montevideo Maru has been digitised
and will be available on the National Archives
of Australia website www.montevideomaru.
naa.gov.au from today.
The translation of the list by the National
Archives of Australia, over the past months,
has revealed an additional civilian internee
believed to have been onboard the Montevideo
Maru, bringing the total number thought to
have perished on board to 1,054.
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and. In the bitterly cold winter of 1944 came
An Australian Fighter Pilot’s Story by Peter
e surprise attack against the Western Allies.
t break. R. Fitton They fell back, held the line, then
The story of a young Australian, a country
snows boy began from New to thaw South and Wales. the skies to clear.
the reckoning. The Russian Armies were adst,
theHe Allies was had one of amassed the many a mighty thousands invasion who
rged forward. journeyed The to Canada war ravaged to train and as a depleted fighter
ce of pilot. this onslaught. He was good, It very was good, a country fmally joining facing
Australian 66 Squadron was caught R.A.F. up in Belgium in this frantic at the end drive of
from the Author
The German High Command was desperate.
ilot's The Flight Wehrmacht Log, the Operational needed more Records fuel and of
f Lesmore Streete, time, conversations believing their and official Vengeance war
hter pilots' experience. Peter has placed Les's
Weapons could still turn the tide for them.
ron into the strategic overview of the fight
From numerous bases they were firing
een Hit presents the training, the pranks, the
thousands of VI flying bombs, V2 rockets
bat, the triumphs, the losses, the despair and
morable and presentation artilleryagainst of the targets experiences in Britain of and an
final months Holland. of In the war bitterly in Europe. cold winter of 1944
came the Battle of the Bulge, a massive
78-1-4771-2356-0 surprise attack can against be purchased the Western byAllies.
at: www:amazon.com, www.x1ibris.com.au
Their lines crumpled, but did not break. They
fell back, held the line, then slowly moved
Winter gave way to Spring. The snows began
to thaw and the skies to clear.
With the weather improving, came the
reckoning. The Russian Armies were
advancing from the East. In the West, the
Allies had amassed a mighty invasion force.
An Australian Fighter Pilot's Story
Peter R. Fitton
RSL On Service
It crossed the Rhine and surged forward. The
war ravaged and depleted Germany could
not stand in the face of this onslaught. It
was a country facing total chaos and defeat.
Our young Australian was caught up in this
frantic drive to victory.
A Note from the Author
Author Peter Fitton has used the Pilot’s
Flight Log, the Operational Records of 66
Squadron R.A.F., the diaries of Les Streete,
conversations and official war records to pen
this account of a fighter pilots’ experience.
Peter has placed Les’s experience and that
of 66 Squadron into the strategic overview
of the fight against Nazi Germany. Never
Been Hit presents the training, the pranks,
the adrenalin pumping rides into combat,
the triumphs, the losses, the despair and
Les’s eventual salvation in this memorable
presentation of the experiences of an
Australian Fighter Pilot during the final
months of the war in Europe.
The book, Never Been Hit ISBN 978-1-4771-
2356-0 can be purchased by phoning 1800 618
969 or on-line at: www:amazon.com, www.
x1ibris.com.au and at www:barnesandnoble.
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DUST, DONKEYS AND DELUSIONS
The myth of Simpson and his Donkey
By Graham Wilson
Publisher: Big Sky Publishing.
400 pages with many photographs.
Book Review by Reg. A. Watson
John Simpson (Kirkpatrick) and his donkey
are enshrined in the Gallipoli story. There
are however, according to author Graham
Wilson, many myths surrounding the man.
It is time for them to be exposed. This comes
at a juncture when his supporters are pushing
for a posthumous Victoria Cross (VC). Mr
Wilson hastens to add in his “Introduction”
that his research has found Simpson to be
“a likable young man and deserving of much
respect” and is aware that his book could see
him as a “Simpson Basher”. What Wilson
really sets out to do is to set the record
straight. There are many ‘myths’ surrounding
Simpson, such as the number of men that he
‘saved’. There are various stories about him
providing the image of Simpson as a likeable
larrikin disrespectful of authority, in other
words the typical image of the World War
One Australian soldier.
There are other myths that he was at the time
recommended for a VC and only bungling by
the authorities destroyed his chances. Other
stories abound how he was well known by
all Australians at Gallipoli and that when he
was killed, a hush fell over the battlefield.
One belief is that if he was in the British
Army he would have been court-martialled
and probably shot. The perceived work done
by Simpson overshadows to a great degree
the work of the ambulance corps and the
stretcher-bearers in general.
The status of Simpson (who was born in
England) has grown to saint-like proportions
even to the extent that it was said he had an
unusual affinity with animals.
The author states, “I wrote the book as an
attempt to, firstly strip away the layers of
mistruths, half-truths and lies that surround
Simpson and reveal the real man.” And he
does that very effectively. He exposes the
impossibility that Simpson achieved what
he is supposed to have achieved. The
author also examines the many witnesses to
Simpson’s work promoting the myths and
legends with his well-documented research
and thoroughness. He discovers that many
who said they knew Simpson were not even
there at the time when Simpson survived at
Gallipoli. Why would people make up what
essentially are lies? Simply, it is a human
trait to be recognised with someone who
has a commendable reputation surrounding
him. Many of the photographs held even by
the Australian War Memorial, supposedly
of Simpson and his donkey are simply not of
him, even one being that of a New Zealand
Simpson and his donkey operated at ‘The
Valley of Death” or Shrapnel Valley for 24
days before he was shot in the heart by a
sniper. It was for a relatively short period of
time that he and his donkey brought down
wounded men to the beach. It is said that he
‘saved’ about 300 men. Taking into account
the amount of time expended, the distance
required to bring back the wounded and
other factors. Wilson says the actual figure
would be around 100, certainly a lot less
than 300. And he queries how many men
he ‘saved’. It is quite logical – as he points
out – that Simpson possibly never ‘saved’
anyone. Those who he did bring back were
the “walking wounded”; those seriously
wounded were retrieved by the stretcher
bearers who could actually be more efficient
than a man who had a cantankerous donkey
to deal with.
A badly wounded soldier could not mount
a donkey and remain seated. The book
contains photographs of men who are able
to sit upright, some even smiling and the
possibility of the donkey taking two seriously
wounded soldiers at a time is cast aside.
Dust, Donkeys and Delusions sets out to
correct the historical records surrounding
Simpson and rehabilitate the memory of
others soldiers whose bravery and sacrifice
at Gallipoli has been overshadowed by the
myth of Simpson.
I found it a dash good read. It is controversial
and may upset some readers, but Wilson puts
a great case forward with his well-researched
and honest approach. It is a good read indeed.
Let the reader come to his own conclusions.
Big Sky Publishing. PP $34.99. 400 pages
with many photographs.
REG. A. WATSON.
RSL On Service
The Minister for Defence Science
and Personnel, Warren Snowdon, has
welcomed the arrival of an historic WWII
Spitfire aircraft found in northern France
in November 2010 to the RAAF Museum
“The conservation work is essential
to ensure the aircraft’s long term
preservation and prevent further
deterioration of this special piece of
our wartime history,” he said.
at Point Cook, for extensive conservation
The Spitfire aircraft was flown by Flight
Lieutenant Henry ‘Lacy’ Smith from Sydney,
NSW, when it was shot down by anti-aircraft
fire on 11 June 1944.
The information in this document is general in nature and does not consider any of your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting
on this information, you should consider obtaining advice from a licensed, financial product adviser and consider the appropriateness of this
information, having regard to your particular investment needs, Canberra objectives and financial ACT situation. 2600You
should obtain a copy of the HOSTPLUS
Product Disclosure Statement and consider the information contained in the Statement before making any decision about whether to acquire an
interest in HOSTPLUS. Issued by Host-Plus Pty Limited ABN 79 008 634 704, AFSL No. 244392, RSEL No. L0000093, HOSTPLUS Superannuation
Fund ABN 68 657 495 890, RSE No. R1000054. For further information on Chant West ratings visit http://hostplus.com.au/info/chant-west-disclaimer
HOST7085_RSL TAS_190x130mm_RSL_01.indd 1 29/06/12 4:40 PM
Job No: Scale:
“The Spitfire MJ789 crashed into the River
Orne, near Caen, in northern France, where
it was recovered almost 70 years later,” Mr
“The wreckage of the aircraft will now
undergo extensive conservation before being
placed on display at the RAAF Museum at
Point Cook, Victoria next year.”
A team of RAAF Museum technical and
curatorial personnel will mechanically clean
all items of the aircraft, to ensure maximum
desalination of the engine and fuselage, a
process that is expected to take more than
“The conservation work is essential to ensure
the aircraft’s long term preservation and
prevent further deterioration of this special
piece of our wartime history,” he said.
Once the Museum is satisfied with the
desalination process, the wreckage will be
prepared for display.
IFE MEMBERS ASSOCIATION END OF WW2 – BRIDAL TRAIN
MANIA When you’ve served the hospitality I’m a journalist and tourism with industries the Fairfax for over Sunday
very disappointing 24 years, to you travel can’t all help the but develop newspapers an appreciation (the Sun Herald for the importance in Sydney and
Sunday to come
ng only to have sixteen members turn researching a story on women who caught
was decided at centre the meeting in-house that when the many the others so-called are bridal being train outsourced. across Australia So our at
ation be wound members up next year are if assured you, as they’re the end always of World speaking War to 2 so a they HOSTPLUS could meet
ers don’t support
And with offices
with their American
I would like to find some women who were
12 Annual General our employer Meeting services will be team part anytime. of the journey To find as a out story more for ANZAC visit
t the Longford RSL Memorial Club.
and dates will
be forwarded at a
or Day call next 1300 year. HOSTPLUS (1300 467 875).
date. If any member has any idea
to keep the association viable please
e to contact me.
People can contact me at this email address
firstname.lastname@example.org or in a letter
email@example.com or phone addressed to:
55674, Mob 0437-589718.
nput will be appreciated.
The Sun Herald
ent, RSL Life Members Association
New South Wales (NSW).
RSL On Service
Cancer Council Tasmania
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Helpline Odds 13 & Ends 11 20
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Over 45,000 young Australians will be homeless tonight. Please don’t wait for the Doorknock. We need your donation now.
01 Finished Art
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