B Company 1 RAR REUNION
REG HILLIER HOUSE
BATTLE OF CRETE MEMORIAL SERVICE SYDNEY 2015
With His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC, DSC Governor of New South Wales memorial speech
1RAR Group Vietnam 1965-66 Reunion An observation by Pat Kramer
As our Boeing jet ‘turned a corner’ Melbourne appeared before us! Landed … luggage collected and off to the transit bus where we met the first of our fellow ‘reunion-ites’. We arrived at the Mercure Welcome Hotel hecked in and who was there with a cheery “Hello” Ray Payne, he introduced us to John Arnold as together they have worked tirelessly putting this reunion together for our enjoyment.
Meeting up with others we went to ‘Soul’ cafe for lunch and then went to the ‘Cocoon’ function and bar room for our first event ‘Meet and Greet’. We were told that there was 204 of us, it really looked a lot more. They’d come from WA, SA, TASSIE, NSW, QLD as far as Cairns and Darwin. There was lots of hand shaking and back slapping as old friend were
reacquainted, but it was largely a case of many people with a common goal getting together and yet within four days they were all united as friends, which in itself was a wonderful outcome for a reunion. A warm welcome was given to all by John Arnold and vital information came from Ray. The table layout for Saturday night’s dinner was there, 21 tables x 10 for us to add who we wished to sit with. Ray’s announcement that the 173d chapters had placed $2000 on the bar ensured everyone had a good time. Dinner that evening was by our own arrangement and many of us found great fare down one of Melbourne’s famous quirky lane ways. The daylight saving gave us time to get our bearings in daylight. Others headed for Chinatown which was very close by.
Thursday morning the buses arrived and we were off to Phillip Island. It is a 90 minutes’ drive from Melbourne and the bridge joining it to the mainland was opened in 1928 and the island has 10,000 permanent ‘human’ residents and 16,000 pairs of breeding penguins! In 1928 they held the first Australian Grand Prix. It now annually hosts the Australian Moto G.P. Our first stop was at the Vietnam Veterans Museum, it was an authentic, engaging and enjoyable experience. A plaque was unveiled by the Presidents of the four Southern Hemisphere Chapters of the 173d and then placed in the ‘Garden of Reflexion’. Our reunion organisers arranged for a mobile coffee crew ‘Coffee on Cue’ and we enjoyed hot coffee at no cost to us. Leaving the museum we drove around the Island until we arrived at the Phillip Island Golf Club for lunch … 200 of us sat in comfort and enjoy an excellent two course meal as we watched the golfers enjoying a game as they shared the green with a gaggle of Cape Baron geese! After lunch we drove around enjoying the scenery … scooted past the Chocolate factory with the men ignoring our pleas to stop!! We arrived at the Dandenong RSL for a brief stopover to see a wonderful Vietnamese Memorial outside the club which was a joint undertaking by the RSL and the Vietnamese community, we were introduced to Andy Nguyen the designer. The memorial consists of a raised plinth with two bronze soldiers on it, one Australian and one Vietnamese and a Huey helicopter above on a pole … Spectacular! We then made our way back into the city grateful we were going against the traffic which at times resembled a parking lot!
Friday Morning we had time to explore the city and surrounds before boarding the busses at 2:00pm to go to Seymour to the Vietnam Veterans Commemorative Walk. We were met by the Seymour Vietnam Veterans Association who maintain this site. It is a truly wonderful way of honouring you guys something so richly deserved. We had an excellent dinner at the Seymour Club and then went back to enjoy the Commemorative Wall lit at night. It was very moving and created what will become a lasting memory. Driving back to Melbourne we enjoyed seeing the city by night the ‘Melbourne Star’ observation wheel was spectacular in its ever changing colours.
Saturday morning the ladies were invited to enjoy a High Tea at Bécasse in the Melbourne Emporium, Chapters 23 & 27 shouted the ladies to the High Tea and they came away most impressed. Queen Victoria markets beckoned some … a Yarra cruise for others …do the city circuit on the free tram, visit the Shrine of Remembrance … back a winner at Moonie Valley … the Zoo … our hotel was next door to Meyer and David Jones … Melbourne was your oyster!
At 5.30pm a very smart group assembled in Lonsdale Street, so much so a young lady asked who we all were and on hearing you were Vietnam Veterans she went ahead and clapped you all as you boarded the coaches with tears rolling down her face as she said “Thank you”. We arrived at 501 Receptions at Footscray for our celebration dinner. Graham Woodward was the moderator for the ‘Empty Chair’ ceremony, many a tear was shed during the playing of Amazing Grace.
Ray Payne was honoured by receiving a certificate from the USA’s Secretary of the Army granting him ‘Honorary Membership of the 503 Infantry Regiment’ few have ever seen Ray lost for words. He also received a presentation from the Kiwis in attendance, we were ALL very proud of him. Groups of friends gathered for photos in front of the flags, wine and beer flowed as we enjoyed a seven course banquet. During the night we were enthralled by a young group of Vietnamese dancers who performed traditional dances for us … which we all enjoyed.
Time seemed to go so fast and the final speeches were made and then it was time to draw the three raffle prizes. First prize was won by Julie Payne, second prize by Ray Hughes, third prize by Bronte Kramer.
Sunday morning breakfast was accompanied by farewells as we all began to make our way home. We left as Ray being coaxed by the majority to do more Group reunions.
This Reunion didn’t ‘just happen’ it was a lot of work for the organizers, Ray Payne, John Arnold and Jim Harper … all those who came added something truly special. All in all, it had everything, great organisation, an excellent program that provided free time and special attention to the ladies. Well done and thank you.
Ray Payne OAM receiving the award
Brian Granlands, John McDonough, Bill Richards and Fred Fanna
Fred Fanna, Bill Richards, John McDonough, Neil McLean and Lance Chaffey
B Coy Reunion 2014
B Coy on parade, Bob Cockerill and Terry Loftus, Peter Peddie and friends and Bar Service
1st BATTALION ROYAL AUSTRALIAN REGIMENT AUSTRALIAN ARMY CATERING CORPS MEMBERS INAUGURAL DINNER, OPAL COVE RESORT, COFFS HARBOUR SATURDAY 16th NOVEMBER 2013
Meridee and Ron Jorna
Ken Young, Dino Polese and Kev Shorrock
Diane and Greg Clark
Sharon and Dino Polese
Troy and Melinda Stephens
Eric and Karen Gillett
Ken Young, Jack James and Eric Gillett
Bob Humphreys and Reg Hughes
Anzac Day Sydney 2013
Anzac Day Port Clinton SA
ANZAC DAY 2013 IN PORT CLINTON SA
Port Clinton SA is a small fishing town on the Yorke Peninsula approximately 130km North of Adelaide with only a small permanent population which increases on weekends & holidays, because of its proximity to Adelaide.
Anzac Day 2013 saw about 50 people attend only the 3rd Anzac ceremony held in the town and was the launching of a new Mural, obtained with a ‘Saluting Their Service’ grant from The Department of Veterans’ Affairs’.
The crowd then enjoyed a morning tea supplied by Kathy Behrendt and her “Monday Movers” exercise group. Plans are now afoot for a bigger & better day, in 2014.
Among the wreath layers, were Ray Behrendt (3pl 1RAR 67-68) & Kathy Behrendt (Legacy).
Anzac Day 2013 WA
Col Evans Daughter Sue and Graham French
Jim Cruickshank, Jack Panosssian, Tiny Stansfield and Scottie Alcorn
Assembly for the march
Assembly at the Waterfront
A Coy Reunion 2013
Harry Mimi and Friends, Forming up and The Service
A Coy ANZAC Day Reunion 2013
The reunion was held at Mittagong this year. We would like to thank our hosts Ray and Lynne Kuschert for arranging a memorable reunion. We had people there as far north as Rockhampton, south as Deniliquin, west to Dubbo and all places in between.
We were thrilled to see Clive Williams (Pl Comd 3 Pl) on the 23rd at the meet and greet as he was flying overseas next day.
On 24th we all went for a look and see to Bowral where the gents went to the Bradman Museum and the ladies did what ladies do best, SHOP. We met up for morning tea and decided we would have a look at Berrima. Looked around and had lunch and returned to Mittagong.
On the evening of the 24th we had a formal dinner and were joined by some local returned exservicemen. It was wonderful to see Lorraine Easton (Peter Gillson’s widow) who gave an address and an insight into her life. “Well done Lorraine”.
It was also a special ANZAC Day for Lindsay Dalton as his whole family came to see Lindsay march. This was the first time ever.
Any A coy fellows out there feel free to join us. Forward notice for next year 2014 when the Reunion will be held in Wauchope with Col and Fay Stigworthy as your hosts.
In Friendship Tineke Dalton
THE POZIERES COMMEMORATION SERVICE SAINT COLUMBA CHURCH, WOOLLAHRA
This service is part of the history of the 1st battalions.
Pipes and Drums of the Scotts College 2010
Colonel Austin taking the salute before the service 2010
The Colours are laid on the Altar at the beginning of the service 2010
The Colours being marched out of the church 2010
Roger Perry (President 1/19th), Major General “Sandy” CMI Pearson AO, DSO, MC (Rtd), CDF General David Hurley AC, DSC 2011
The Pipes and Drums of the Scotts College outside St Columba Church 2011
The 1st Battalion flag on the Altar with the Rev Dr Allan Russell presiding 2011
CDF General David Hurley AC, DSC reading the names of the fallen under the Pozieres Cross 2011