Makan No. 247
Official Journal 2/30 Bn. A.I.F. Association
Subscription Rate for Makan for both Life and Annual Members per year: $1.50
Registered for Posting as Periodical: Category A
Dates for Your Diary
4th Aug 1979 -
11th Aug 1979 -
Len says that he would like to see more 2/30 Bn.
11/12 Aug 1979 -
An Inter-Unit Bowls Competition is to be arranged. Details to be available later. Bookings to Secretary.
12 Aug. 1979 -
Memorial Committee. All Members of 8 Div invited to attend.
18 Aug 1979 -
Best Wishes from Bruce Campbell and he would like to see a fair representation of the Boys.
14 Oct 1979 -
3 Nov 1979 - Commemoration of Formation of 2nd AIF. Forty years since 3/11/39. All Divisions. March from O'Connell St., Sydney to Cenotaph, lay Wreaths.
On the count of heads on the March we were either one up or down on 100. Your scribe had been honoured by the Executive in being asked to carry the Bn. Banner, but he has to confess, that by the time that we reached Hyde Park South, he was crook, and although he went to the POW Rooms in Clarence St, had some lunch, and had a chance to talk with some of the boys, he does not know if he saw all that were there, and had to ring for his son, Bruce and Bruce's wife, Neryl, to come to get the car home.
Rod Anderson was down from North Queensland and led the Battalion. In outward appearance he appears to be fit, though, you can't tell these days, and we have to remember that he is a three score year and ten and over. I did notice him at the POW rooms, settled into a corner, having a good yarn with different folk, and Noel Johnston told me that Rod rang him on the Thursday, before leaving for Mascot to catch a plane back North, said that he had a good time and enjoyed meeting so many if the boys again.
Noel Johnston was not with us in the City, because he had been asked to be guest speaker at Manly's Commemorative Service and, as the invitation had come from Arch Thorburn's Sister-in-law, the Mayor of Manly, Mrs J. Thorburn, he felt, that he could not refuse. Arch left for Manly after the March, but had brought Bet Collins' sandwiches in the morning. (Thanks, Bet. Ed)
Besides Rod Anderson, other 70 and over, who stepped out in the March were, Ray Simmons at 74, Geoff Alcock 73, Andy Hyslop 72, Sammy Hall 71. Ray Duncombe at 72 made the POW Rooms.
Country folk, who had come to see their cobbers were, Wal Scott from Wollongong District, Bull Cody from Shellharbour and his brother, Horrie, from Bomaderry, Allan Walton from further south at Malua Bay, Norm King from Golspie near Goulburn, then Stan Desmet, whom we have not seen for sometime, and whom we learnt is now in the Commonwealth Public Service at Canberra, while George Kinsela was down from Grenfell, Darcy Pickard came from Chittaway South and Athol Charlesworth from Leura.
We missed some of the regulars, Sandy Christensen, known to be in Concord Hospital, and Ray Body was not down; Jack Boss was unable to be there; Jack Carey told us by phone, that he was not able to make it for the day; Sid Grounds and Con Hedwards another pair missing. "Gentleman George" Ramsay wasn't sitting on the footpath with Chubbie and Max looking after him.
Most of the B Coy boys, who attempted a lunch gathering at a Chinese Restaurant in Dixon St, were not able to come to the POW Rooms. One on the spot reckoned that the Chinese saw them coming. Most of them were hit to leg with the extra high charge.
Some of the others at the real Bn Gathering must have had a good innings, since Stan Arneil was trying to find the owner of a pair of spectacles the next day. No names no Pack Drill, but he was seeking the telephone numbers of a couple of Mortar Stalwarts.
We were accompanied on the March by Ted Barnes two lads, Jack Heasman’s son, Tom Jones’ son and Maurice B1ack, who had come down from Umina with Andy Hyslop as he has done before.
Len Dawson’s grandson, Peter Lawton, had intended coming but had transport problems.
Manly Commemorative Service
As reported by Noel Johnston, the arrangements at Manly were first class. About 200 or more Diggers marched along the Corso to their Cenotaph, along with about a similar number of Scouts, Guides and other Groups, whilst a crowd of approx. 1000 Members of the Public were gathered around the Dais, where the Main Service and Address was given. Noel has let me have his notes:
"Today we commemorate the 64th Anniversary of that first Anzac Day. But do you know what, in fact, we do commemorate? It is, certainly not the Day itself; it was a great event, but not a great victory of any decisive nature.
"It is certainly not a commemoration for all our great military exploits in war (strange as that remark, may seem to some). "We are not a militaristic people. Our Armies were all citizen volunteers. So first of all, I debunk two common misconceptions. At the same time, I ask - In what perspective do we regard this great Australian National Day? I share with you, especially those of our younger generation, my own views.
"First and foremost, we commemorate and pay homage to the sacrifice of over 100,000 Australians, who fell on foreign Battlefields, in scores of great battles, since that first display of valour on the beaches and heights of Gallipoli in 1915 - A truly horrific loss of Australian Manhood over two world Wars and later campaigns in Korea, Malaya and Vietnam.
"In the second place, we see in retrospect the first Anzac Day, as perhaps the most significant day in our history. I well remember, as a boy going to school in 1915, reading the newspapers of the day quoting what other newspapers around the world were saying about the heroism and bravery of the Australians and New Zealanders, landing on a most inhospitable shore on Gallipoli and throwing the Turkish Army back, in what was a really successful landing, despite that the campaign was later abandoned.
"It wasn't the battle, so much as the sheer downright bravery and determination of the Australians and New Zealanders that won renown. It was indeed a great step forward in Australian History. Suddenly we talked in a different language, as it were. We had ceased to be a colony of Great Britain and we emerged as a NEW NATION amongst the group of Allies then fighting the cause of freedom against aggression.
"Looking back 64 years later, I, myself have no doubt that that great historic event on the Gallipoli Peninsula was the most significant event in Australia's history.
"Thirdly, we are given this special day each year to reflect with gratitude on the fact, that, for the whole of our Australian existence, not one alien warrior - bent on conquest or destruction - has ever set foot on Australian soil. Furthermore after putting 331,000 men into our armed services in 1914-18 and over 500,000 men in 1939-45, our potential strength is such as to deter any would be aggressor - provided, of course, we avoid apathy and any stupid assumptions that mankind everywhere will never resort to force to achieve their aims.
"Looking around the world today, the predominant scene is one of change and sudden shifts of power, with almost continuous shedding of blood in the process.
"So, we put our Anzac Day Commemoration into its true perspective. Today we enjoy great benefits in our Australian heritage; we enjoy complete freedom from foreign interference in our affairs; we elect governments of our choice by truly democratic processes and in liberty of judgement, with no duress from any quarter. These privileges are NOT due merely to good luck - they are the rewards of terrible sacrifices over the years since 25 April 1915.
"Those several thousand Australian and New Zealand boys, who landed on Gallipoli 64 years ago today, knew that their task was to show the world, what Australians and New Zealanders were made of. They certainly did that with great honour.
"Let us not forget that they also showed Australians of future generations, that facing a declared foe in defence of all that we hold dear, is the only true course to follow at all times. To quote the famous motto of the Returned Services League of Australia:
"THE PRICE OF LIBERTY IS ETERNAL VIGILANCE."
Anzac Day At Bathurst
Jack Maclay reports on his trip to Bathurst:
"As the Battalion Representative an this occasion I arrived in Bathurst at 12.15 to the 24th in time for lunch and an invitation (accepted) to attend Bathurst South Primary School and the Assumption School for their respective Anzac Services. Two services, carried out, almost entirely by the children, was indeed a surprise. Bathurst R.S.L.'s Secretary / Manager, Col Watson, their President, Treasurer and Bugler comprised the visiting party. Almost every school in Bathurst holds a similar service, prior to Anzac Day. The only assistance given is by the R.S.L. Bugler, who renders the appropriate calls. A pity more schools do not follow this example. It is a very satisfying experience.
"Anzac Day broke - bright, clear and frosty - followed by a warm fine day. I attended a very moving Dawn Service. Breakfast in the Club, followed by the Citizens' Commemoration Service at the Carillon at 10.45. This service was followed by an excellent lunch with our good friends, Marj. and Bruce Pratt.
"Then we went to the Cairns (2/30 Bn and 9 Div) at Kelso for a very moving service, in which Bruce and I contributed in some small way.
"Bathurst R.S.L. had prepared for this year's Service a Brief History of the moves for the installation of the 2/30 Bn Memorial Cairn, a foolscap sheet with Andy Hyslop's poem, which he wrote in August 1970, at the head, the story of its dedication, the appointment of Mr. Herb Pratley and then Bruce Pratt as custodians; concluding with the information of the numbers, from the Battalion of those who paid the supreme sacrifice in other lands, in accordance with that simple inscription carved on the Cairn, "They went from here".
"The Association's Trophy for the most improved member of the Junior Band was presented, this year, to two Members, a boy and a girl, it is now open to both girls and boys to join. The Bandmaster said that he had great difficulty in which of the Band he might consider the most improved, seeing the progress all had made. The decision to honour two Members is to be effected by one having the trophy at home for one period of six months and the other will hold it for the balance of the twelve months.
"Another change is that the Band is fostered by the Bathurst Council, which outfits the boys and girls in neat uniforms, whilst the R.S.L. continues its help in seeing to maintenance of the instruments.
"Your representative skipped the 1700 hrs Service at the War Graves Cemetery, but then attended the 1800 hrs “Retreat Ceremony" at the Carillon.
"All services were an outstanding success - exceptionally well organised and ably assisted by Civic minded Bathurst Organizations.
"Anzac Day, on this occasion, impressed me so greatly that I have promised to return next year, God Willing.
"The hospitality of Marj and Bruce Pratt was an outstanding feature of my Bathurst visit. The reminiscing and general conversation that took place was well worth the trip.
"Both Marj and Bruce were particularly interested in the details of the trip back to Malaysia. All three of us became so involved and interested in the cross flow of conversation, that it was reluctantly given up around 22.30 hrs, when Bruce returned me to the Motel.
"Marjorie and Bruce again extend to all members an open invitation to call upon them, when in Bathurst or passing thru'. Nothing either of them like better than to make all callers heartily welcome.
"Bruce, particularly, would like to see some Don Coy chaps next Anzac Day, at least, or at any other time in between.
"My thanks are due to Col Watson and the R.S.L. Club Members for their hospitality and welcome on this occasion.
"To all Members if the Bn, I can say without a doubt, the welcome for any of you to Bathurst shall exceed your expectations. May I look forward to you being with me next year?
NX37631 Pte Raymond Charles (Andy) Knox, 14 Platoon, C Coy, Second Avenue Camp, Singapore Working Party, "F" Force, and Aerodrome Work at Changi.
I received a phone call from Ray's nephew on 19th April telling me that Ray had died at 12.30 that afternoon. The news came as a shock, as we had been kept posted by both Tom Grant and Jock Logan, frequent visitors to Ray, whilst he was in the Tweed District Hospital, and, although he had had to have his left leg amputated below the knee, because of bad circulation of the blood, arrangements were being made to send him to the Greenslopes Hospital, Brisbane, for an artificial limb and the therapy required, and he had been cheerful, whenever they had been to see him.
Ray was a regular attendant at Association functions after the war, until the bad transport facilities to the Collaroy plateau at night, making it a difficult area to reach in the early hours of the morning, led to him curtailing his attendances; that did not deprive him of his interest in the Association, however.
Andy had his ups and downs since demobilisation, but it was said, that "he cheerfully reckons that he has more good days than bad ones," Two doses of pneumonia and Hong Kong flu, a heart attack and a broken leg, arthritis making his fingers "a bit twisted". In 1978 the medicos at AGH Concord told him that his blackouts had undoubtedly been caused on the Aerodrome job, when he had been hit on the head with a pick-handle by one of the Nips, apparently it had not been diagnosed that a portion of his skull had been fractured, so he had lived with that depression and subsequent blockage of the blood flow ever since.
When your scribe made his first trip to the North Coast for the Ex-Ps.O.W. Reunion at Lismore in February 1978, Andy deliberately arranged a postponement of an operation he was to have had at Concord and went up to his nephew, Don Tingcombe, on the Gold Coast, then Don drove him down to Lismore for that Reunion. He was so elated at seeing so many of his old mates up there, that he said "I don't mind putting off that op. This night has put another 10 years on my life."
He had been boarded out from the P.M.G.'s Dept in 1971 after having had 24 years continuous service with it. By late 1975 he was visiting the Medical Centre at the War Vet's Home, Narrabeen, twice a week for treatment and work therapy, through which he tried pottery, then copper tooling, and a little of lapidary. His cheerful nature and readiness to help others was so outstanding, as well as his skill in these arts. It led the administrators at the Home asking him to be instructor to some of the others attending the Centre, and, as was reported in the "MAKAN" for Jun/Jul 1977 he was able to present the Governor, Sir Roden Cutler, with a beautiful example of his work in the form of a 3' x 2' Rising Sun Badge of the A.I.F.
Andy's local M.O. up at Bilinga was a Dr. John Follent, who is also the local C. of E. Minister, and has been spoken of very highly by Jock Logan. He was with Andy, when he died, and he told Freda that Andy had said that he was sorry that he couldn't make it for Anzac Day; as ever, thinking of others and not so much of himself.
The funeral service was held the day after Andy's death, the Presbyterian Minister taking part of the service; Dr. John Follent recited the Ode and spoke very feelingly of the 8 Div. as the Bravest of the Brave. The Australian Flag was on the coffin, with the Slouch Hat at the head.
A Guard of Honour of Returned Men stood on each side of the path to the hearse, and each man was introduced to Freda. She learnt that some came from Casino and Lismore to pay their respects to a mate. Ron Johnston, Ron Sweeney, Jimmy Small, Len Clavan, "Joe" Johnston and Tommy Grant were the six Members of the Unit present, and Tom Grant tells me that a wreath was laid on behalf of the Battalion.
Freda says that she must say, "Vale, My Mate" and wishes through "MAKAN" to express her thanks to all, for being so kind through all her troubles. She closes by saying, with sincere thoughts to all the fellows of 'Galleghan's Greyhounds'.
She also relates a tale so often learnt these days. Poor old Andy had two goes at the Repat. Tribunal to be classified T.P.I. and failed. He did not give up and the result of another try came, 'agreed unanimously', a big shock to all, but, oh so late, as those who knew his circumstances agree.
Thomas Traulsen Jones, Ed - Ex F.M.S.V. and 2/10 Baluchi
Many of the Battalion will not have had the pleasure of meeting Tom, but, just as in some Country Areas, men of other Units have been adopted by 2/30 Bn Men, where the number of their own Unit has been small, since all 8 Div. learnt that they were one, by their intermixing on Jap Working Parties. Tom wished to be able to pay his respects to the dead of his Units on such occasions as Anzac Day, and then identified himself with the Bn in supporting its other activities.
Tom had been in the Indian Army with the rank of Lieutenant in the 2/10 Baluchi; an NCO in the Federated Malay States Volunteers; in civil life before the war had been a Mining Engineer. He spent the years 1942/5 as a Prisoner of the Japanese; resumed his profession with the Mines, after the Capitulation of the Japanese, and then came to Australia to enter into Business on his own account, still in his profession, Mine engineering.
George Winchester tells me that one of his jobs, which took three years to complete, was to oversee the excavation for the bed of a river in a new site; damn the old bed; divert the waters into the new bed, then dredge the old bed for the recovery of the mineral content in the silt.
Tom recently had a spell in Concord Hospital, but the manner of his death was a shock, as he died in his sleep at Albury on 18 April last.
We mourn with his wife, Jean, and the children, Jennifer, Ting, Harry and Garry, in one more of the 'salt of the earth passing to his Maker'.
We welcomed Garry with us on Anzac Day.
Deaths Of Next Of Kin
Ron Stoner suffered the loss of his brother, William, who lived in the Canberra Suburb of Deakin and who died on 8 April.
Henry West of A/A Platoon HQ, Coy, lost his Mother, on 15 April last. She was living still in Dee Why and was 86 yrs of age, when she died.
Mrs. Thelma Doris Dainton, widow of our late cobber, Bill Dainton, died on 7 May. She was living still in the home, which she and Bill had established at 112 Prince Charles Road, French's Forest.
Alex. Campbell of I Section, Bn HQ had been looking after his mother, in his home at Strathfield, after he had lost his wife, Gwyneth, in July last year, but she was over 90 and had lived a good life. She passed on from this life on Wednesday, 16 May and a Family Service was held at the Northern Suburb's Crematorium on 18/5/79. The intimate nature of the service was made more so for Alex. and the family by the presence of Bishop Kerle, Anglican Bishop of Armidale, since the Campbell and Kerle families had been next door neighbours, with the children being of similar ages, so that in conducting the service, Bishop Kerle was farewelling an old and valued friend, almost as dear to him as his own Mother.
Your Scribe and June attended at the Cremation Service to represent the Battalion.
LEST WE FORGET
Kevin Ward reports that
those who have been discharged from the Hospitals, since last report and
as at 24/5/79 are:
Will Members and Wives please advise Kevin Ward, when they are admitted to Hospital anywhere, and, if to Concord please see that Admission Clerk notes the Admission Sheet "2/30 Bn". Experience has shown that the Clerk does not bother to ask the question, "What Unit"? although there is a box on the Sheet for that information. It is not a Repat Hospital now.
Do You Remember?
This story appeared in the March copy of "Tid-Apa", the Journal of the 4 Anti-Tank Association, it concerns the daughter of one of their Members, who did not survive the sinking of the ship, in which he, with others of "A" Force, was being taken to Japan.
“Back in 1968 a letter came to the 4 Anti-Tank Association. from a Mrs Bette Monaghan:- "I was only 14 weeks old, when Dad sailed away to Malaya. All I know of him is that he was drowned, whilst being taken to Japan near the end of the War. I have tried and tried, without success, to learn about him......what he did, what he liked, how he lived, what he was like to know. I am very proud of him, but I know nothing of him."
“The Association commenced enquiries amongst its members and coincidences do happen. She was told to contact two of the Regiment, one of them a Barber and the other a Farmer, both of whom lived quite close to her.
“Almost immediately a reply came back from Bette saying, "I have never been so surprised in my life, as when I received your letter. Ever since my children were old enough, Mr. Crisp of Sea Lake, has cut their hair (and you have most likely guessed - he was one of the two, to whom she was advised to write.) I had no idea that he had been in the Army, let alone one of the 4th Anti-Tank Regiment and one of Dad's best friends."
“So from those two, Bette was at last able to learn much of her long dead father....of training days at Puckapunyal, War experiences in Malaya and Singapore and then POW days in Malaya, and also Burma.
“Little wonder that Bette was able to write in Tid-Apa of 1970: "Thank you all. Dad is becoming much more to me than just another name. I am so proud of him".
“But more - much more - was to come.
“A year or so later this story was being told at a Ps.O.W. Reunion at Numurkah, when one of the listeners - Ray Wheeler, ex 2/10 Aust. Electrical Mechanical Engineers - said excitedly, "I know that chap. I was on the Rakuyo Maru with him, when it was sunk on the way to Japan."
"And so a second link of the chain fell into place. Ray was able to tell how he, Bette's father and a total force of 3,000 Australians sailed from Singapore as part of "A" Force, on May 29th 1942 (2/30 Men, 15 May). Their ship was a small, very dirty steamer, the 'Toyohashi Maru', and they sailed via Medan in Sumatra, then to various ports on the Burma Coast - Victoria Point, Mergui and finally Tavoy. They worked on airfield construction and afterwards did two weary years on the Burma Railway. They came to know well such camps as Thanbyuzayat, Kun Knit Kway, Beke Taung, Tanbaya Nieke, and the Three Pagoda Pass.
“Then , in mid 1944, Ray and other survivors including Bette's Dad, were brought back to Singapore by way of Nom Peng, Saigon, Nom Pladuk and Bangkok. They were put to work on Palau Bakau, one of a group of islands off the South West Coast of Singapore Island, preparing excavations for a dry dock, which is a reality now. Then on 6 Sep. 1944, they boarded the Rakuyo Maru bound for Japan. On board were 599 British Ps.O.W. and 849 Australians under the command of Brig. Varley. There were 14 of 4 Anti-Tank Regiment included in the Party.
“At midnight on 12 Sep. the Rakuyo Maru was off Hainan in the South China Sea, two days out of Tokyo, when the convoy was attacked by American Submarines. The Ps.O.W. in the holds heard and felt the concussion of torpedoes hitting other ships; then at 2 am their nightmare became a reality and a torpedo exploded in the engine room of the Rakuyo Maru.
“We knew it was coming by the screams of the Japanese, on deck”, said Ray, “We were beautifully silhouetted against two burning tankers and the Japs could see the torpedoes clearly, streaking towards their ship.”
“Minutes later more screams from above heralded a second torpedo, which burst into the forward hold near the anchor. “We were lucky in one sense”, commented Ray wryly, ”They fired a torpedo into each side of the hold, in which we were crammed and a few only of the Ps.O.W. were injured.”
“Despite the two torpedoes, the Rakuyo Maru sank slowly, so slowly that the Japanese were able to take to the life boats and row away for dear life, leaving the Ps.O.W. in possession of the ship.
“The Ps.O.W. came up on deck to a scene that, despite the pitch black night, was as bright as day. Two oil tankers were burning fiercely and a freighter, carrying drums of gasoline, had become a flaming torch. As Ray said graphically, “All of the three blazing ships were close enough for us to see clearly figures running frantically back and forth on the bridges of the three ships.
“The Ps.O.W. were lucky in another respect, the Rakuyo Maru on a previous voyage had carried troops and there were life jackets for all. There were also many priceless Carley floats - 4' x 4' wooden frames with planks across the top and ropes along the sides.
“The Ps.O.W. tossed everything that would float into the water - Carley floats, hatch covers, oil drums, baskets, any and everything.
“Then at daylight, Bette's Dad, Ray Wheeler and a group of about ten Australians stood on deck, looking down at the big groups in the water on each side of the ship. Carley floats hatch covers and drums had been lashed together as well as was possible in the black, oil-covered water and over them swarmed black bedraggled Ps.O.W.
"Well come on boys", said Ray, "It's time we weren’t here. She'll go soon". Ray and a group of friends went to the port side and started to step over; by now the Rakuyo Maru was so low in the water, that it was a drop of barely five feet into the sea. Bette's father commenced to follow, hesitated, then followed his close friend, Rex Auritch, over the starboard rail to join the great mass of men on that side.
“Ray Wheeler was destined to be saved after six days of exposure and thirst on a Carley float; six days constantly awash, in which he saw his comrades die one by one... from thirst, from drinking too much sea water, from hopelessness.. Then towards late evening on the sixth day - like a dream - the United States Submarine, Queenfish, surfaced alongside them; their POW days were over.
“So it was that the 4th Anti-Tank Regt. had been able to trace for Bette the life of her father, right up to that fateful moment, when he stepped over the starboard side of the sinking freighter, destined for another world than ours.
“Thirty four years later a final footnote was added to this story of the sinking of the Rakuyo Maru, when Joe Bates, Executive Officer of the USS Sea Lion - the Submarine that had sunk the Rakuyo Maru - came to Australia to try to bury forever the ghosts of the past, “From the moment that they had learnt that the ship was carrying Ps.O.W., the sinking of the Rakuyo Maru had affected the crew of the Sea Lion very deeply. Their anguish can be imagined when it was ascertained that just on 1,000 Ps.O.W. had perished as a result of their action.
“Joe Bates, in particular, had been haunted by this fact and had said to friends, "I will not rest until I meet some of the survivors and see if we have been forgiven." At a meeting, in Melbourne, in late 1978, Joe was able to meet some of the survivors, and he was moved beyond words to find that any bitterness, that may have existed, had long since vanished and that, indeed, he was regarded almost as hero. The fact that the Sea Lion, along with other submarines, had taken considerable risks to pick up survivors for days on end, was stressed time and again.
“And with the departure of Joe Bates from Australia, possibly the one question that remains to be answered is what was the significance of the brief life of Bette's father? He was born, grew to manhood, loved another human being, fought for his country, finally died for his country. Because he loved and was loved in return, his daughter's first born son, also given the first name of the grandfather, whom he would never know, but whose name he bears in honour if him now grows to manhood in Australia, and bears the name with pride.
As set out in the supplement with last MAKAN, the Members of our Battalion, who were thought to be on this part of “A” Force were:
BAIRD Pte. J.H.
but, if anyone has any more accurate list, we would be glad of the correct information.
NX 36653 Pte, G. Dan Conquit - Sig Platoon and transferred to 8 Div Sigs on 10/11/41
Your Scribe was told on Anzac Day that the Sig. Platoon Manning Chart in last issue of MAKAN was wrong in not showing that Dan Conquit had gone to Borneo with "B" Force and the note "Dx "B" Force" should be shown against his name and also, that the Supplement - "Last Post List of Personnel of Battalion" of last "MAKAN" should show his name in order on page 10 under the heading "Personnel transferred out before commencement of war in Malaya".
The above details should be substituted for those which appear on Page 7 of our supplement of “Last Post List of Personnel of Battalion with the last issue of “Makan”
Mr. Claude Pickford, who had held the position of Staff Captain 22 Bd. HQ advised your scribe that QX24153 Harry Edward John Phillips, was reported to him by the Sig. Officer of 22 Bd. HQ as having been killed by mortar fire on the afternoon of 14 Feb '42, and Capt. Pickford was asked, if he would supervise the burial and conduct the burial service. He agreed to do this.
The body was wrapped in ground sheet and interred in its shallow grave in a rose garden near the servants' quarters of No 11A Holland Rd. Singapore, and Captain Pickford wrote the pertinent particulars, to identify what had been done, in the prayer book, which he carried. One of Phillips' identity discs remained with the body, the other was included with a couple of items of personal property, Pay Book etc., which accompanied a Casualty Return to Div. HQ.
Captain Pickford was informed, on his making enquiries on return to Australia in 1945, that the remains of Phillips had been recovered and interred in a Common Grave, but he knew that there were no other casualties reported in that immediate vicinity in Holland Road, whilst occupied by 22 Bde HQ.
It happened that Capt Pickford was on business in 1963 on a trip to Singapore, Malaysia and other Eastern Countries. He made a point of visiting that part of Holland Road, where 22 Bde HQ was sited. He identified the two cottages, which the Bde had occupied. They had become the quarters of a Nunnery. So he interviewed the Superior; informed her of the reason of his visit, and told her that some variations appeared in the layout of the buildings: behind one cottage had been a double garage, which was no longer there. Yes, she replied, you are not wrong, that building was pulled down last year. Behind the other cottage, he said, were what they took for servants' quarters, but now that building appeared to be larger than when he was there in the wartime. Again, she agreed with him, extensions had been put on to that building. Well, he said, at the end of those quarters had been a path and then a rose garden, and it is in that rose garden that Phillips had been buried.
Army Records were notified of his findings on his trip, with an indication of the exact spot, where the grave was made, and the HQ of the Aust. Army Force in Singapore at the time in 1963 did recover Phillips' body from the spot indicated by Captain Pickford. On 2 May '63 the body was buried at Kranji, Plot 27, Row E, Grave 17 and the necessary record was forwarded to Central Army Records Office, Albert Park soon afterwards.
The reason for Phillips' name being under the heading "Missing believed killed" was because of a report that he and another soldier had lost their way, when sent to join the Bn at Mandai; had gone to the 2/29 Bn position, and that he had been killed on 15/2/42. Such report, however, had not been confirmed at any time.
Some of the amending details appeared in "Makan" No 160 of Nov / Dec 1963, but not as fully as now disclosed.
(Captain Pickford contacted your scribe, when he read the detail, which had been listed in our Supplement, and we have thanked him for his assistance. Ed)
NX26860 Pte F.S. Watts
- B Coy and "F" Force; Died of illness on train between Sonkurai and Niki.
It came to our notice that Reveille of 1 Jan. 1943 contained an item relating to the above Members of our Battalion, viz:
"Mr. and Mrs F.S. Watts of "Ticehurst", Trundle are proud of their sons, of whom there are six serving with the Forces.
"There remain a couple of sons at home, who will go when the harvesting etc. is completed and their services are required. The 2 Militia sons were turned down for the A.I.F. in the early stages of the War.
“Mr. and Mrs. Watts are pioneers of Trundle, having lived there over 40 years, on the property, originally selected by Mr. F.S. Watts Senior, who married early in the present century Miss Lucy Leydon, also of this District.
"Mr. Watts is a farmer and grazier and has a good flock of merino sheep. He is also a breeder of Clydesdale horses and of high class Berkshire and Tamworth pigs.
"The Watts' home is noted for its hospitality and the whole family for splendid citizenship and work for patriotic and charitable causes.
"The number of functions held at their home is a solid token of desire to help the boys at the front as well as Ps.O.W. and Red Cross Funds.
"Long live such good
Repat. Doctors Show Their Ignorance Again
One of our reporters has word from one of his cobbers, now in another State, of some of the difficulties, which he has encountered in examinations by Repat. Doctors.
He says, "Most of the doctors here are English and it is hard to get through to them, just what Ps.O.W. conditions were like, especially in Thailand and Burma. Further, it appears that there might not be an equivalent in England to our Repat. and they seem to be anti-pension.
"When I discussed cardiac beri beri with the English M.O. who examined me, he said, "What did they give you for it?" So, I replied to him, "I don't think you realise that there was nothing to give anybody for anything."
"Next, he said, "Did they put you to bed?" to which I replied, "Well, if you call half a blanket on the bamboo slats a bed, then, Yes, they put me to bed."
"This seemed to amaze him."
Your scribe feels that he must add his comment and say that that is the state of mind of the Repat. Doctors, who mouth such piffle as "The increase in physical activity in Ps.O.W. (Jap) is regarded as beneficial, so far as the development of coronary heart disease is concerned."
Medicine is an inexact science like economics and that doctor omitted 5 very vital words in his finding:
They are, "ALL OTHER THINGS BEING EQUAL"
It is all very well to decide on any conclusion, if one is working in a vacuum, but to come up with the correct answers requires that the facts of life should be taken into account; in the circumstances of all Ps.O.W.(J), to what do these theorists, who never experienced their life, seek to equate P.O.W. torment of a life that had nothing normal in it. Increased activity, as exacted by brutality, of men, who in many cases were already at the end of their tether, sick, starved, mentally tortured by a life so foreign to their nature, can never be of good.
It would seem that these doctors forget the mental side and its effect on the body and that the soldier has to sabotage anything he can of his enemy, that is his military training, all 'increase in activity' goes against the grain.
Annual General Meeting was held at Public Service Association Club, Kent St. Sydney at 7.30 Pm Friday, 30th March 1979.
Arch Thorburn (President) in the Chair and 14 Members were present, whilst apologies were received from 5 Members.
Minutes of last General Meeting were endorsed.
A silence was observed in respect of battalion members who had died since last annual meeting.
Your Executive has met regularly and applied itself to the conduct of the Association in a manner which, I trust, meets with your approval.
You will be aware that the health of our Patron is still the cause of great concern. I take the opportunity to extend to him very best wishes from all Members of the Association.
Apart from the usual matters that are the concern of the Executive, we this year undertook:
A) A Reprint of the Battalion History.
B) A tour of Malaysia and Singapore under leadership of Ron Maston. I would like to congratulate Ron for his initiative in organising this most successful tour, also George Aspinall for his work as photographer and his work in compiling a Pictorial Record of the Battalion, which, it is expected, may be available for viewing in the coming year.
I should scarcely need to mention the sterling services given by Alex Dandie and his helpers in connection with “MAKAN". Also Kevin Ward and Garry Evans in Hospital and Welfare work, John Black in shouldering the organising of Reunions and the Members of the Executive in general for giving their time and attention to the Association.
Subscription rates have been held steady. I am pleased to note MAKAN Editor's success in contacting Members of the Bn. who, previously, have not been in contact with the Association. As a result, Membership has been maintained at a level higher than we might have had reason to expect.
The Association is indebted to Mrs Lamble and Dr. Sands for their generous donation of the full cost of a supply of Makan covers.
The Reunion in November, "B.J." Memorial Bowls at Bankstown R.S.L. Bowling Club and "Gemas Day" all turned out to be successful functions.,
The Association this year renewed its affiliation with 8 Div Council and Service Associates.
The thanks of the Executive go to Regional Representatives in Country Areas and to those people who organised functions and engaged in activities which had the effect of promoting the welfare of the Association.
We look forward to achieving equal success in the forthcoming year.
And Treasurers Report
We have examined the above statement with the records of 2/30 Bn. A.I.F. Association and, in our opinion, the statement is a true record of all monies received and expended by the Association during the year ended 31 December 1978.
Duesbury, Johnston & Marks Chartered Accountants.
A Contingent Liability exists in respect of the cost of reprinting "Galleghan's Greyhounds".
The Treasurer commented: It has been a satisfactory year for the Association from the financial point of view; the amount of cash at Bank at our disposal is $500 less than at the same time the previous year. It has to be borne in mind that we hold deposit payment amounting to nearly $1,200 for pre-subscription to the reprint of "Galleghan’s Greyhounds". When this commitment, which could materialize at any time now, is taken into consideration, we still have approximately $1,000 cash available. In addition, we have $7,000 in Special 2F Bonds, maturing in 1983.
These figures do not take into account the subscriptions which have been paid in advance, which cannot be counted as recurring income.
Your Executive authorised an advance of $350 to the possible expenses of the Malaysian Tour in January 1979. You will be aware of how highly successful was this tour in all respects. It is a great tribute to the hospitality of the Singapore / Malaysian people, whom the tour party encountered (and the grand organizing of our official representatives) that of the $350 advance, $237.80 was not used. That is, the party was involved only in an outlay of $112.20. Ron Maston has provided a very detailed accounting of the expenditure. Although the prime objective (the plaque at the bridge) was not achieved, the results in all other respects seem to have been most successful.
Our 1978 Annual Reunion was a splendid get-together. Unfortunately, some of our Members, who had indicated their intention of attending, and sent in their subscriptions to it, were unable to come along on the actual date, other kind members sent in a double sub., just in case somebody had problems. Others very kindly sent in "just a little extra". The net result was, that after a very good evening together, all paid, we were $55 to the good, vis-a-vis our expenditure.
It will be seen from the years accounts that by far our greatest outgoings were, obviously, connected with the preparation and postage of "MAKAN" and its ancillary publications. I am sure that you will all agree that this is as it should be. Thanks to the wonderfully generous support given by the Sands' family, we have been greatly assisted in defraying such costs. Our Editor/Chief Correspondent will, no doubt, elaborate in this regard in his Annual Report.
A generalised breakdown of the expenses for the year for production and distribution of "MAKAN" is:
It should be pointed out that our Editor assumed full control of the typing / setting up, etc. of the production, thus eliminating all of the external typing costs - which were by no means inconsequential. Since March of 1978 this has saved the Association a very considerable amount, as well as involving our Editor in a great deal of extra work. The production costs of MAKAN would have been considerably greater had it not been for our Editor assuming the role of the previously employed typists.
At the end of the financial year, approximately $1,200 was on hand for pre-subscription to the projected reprint of "Galleghan's Greyhounds". This, of course, is monies held, so to speak in trust for advance purchases and, in some cases, postage of the reprint, when it comes to hand. In considering the financial circumstances of the Association such trust monies must be born in mind in considering our Savings Bank Balance of $2,235.
During the course of the year I experienced an illness, which made it prudent for your Executive to appoint a Deputy Treasurer - Committee man, Mr. Jack Black. In this capacity Jack has readily and willingly been available at all times. My thanks to him for his stand-by. In the circumstances it might be considered advisable to continue such an arrangement during the ensuing year.
Your Association gave donations and subscriptions totalling $115 to various organisations during the course of the year. Details are to hand should any Member wish to know them.
Interest credited to our Savings Bank Account in respect of our Bonds and Current Bank Balance amounted to $719.
At the time of preparation of this report, all commitments and accounts, brought to my notice, have been met. That is there are no unpaid accounts.
Once again, I express my thanks for the very co-operative and valuable assistance given me by our Editor / Chief Correspondent, Mr. Alex. Dandie and our Honorary Auditor, Mr. Andy Noble. They made my task so much easier and each of them has done a grand job in their own sphere of the Association's activities.
Chief Correspondent's Report
was also adopted, as splendid, and climaxing a magnificent years work. At request of Ron Maston, it is hereby recorded Alex. Dandie's dedication and assistance with the organising of the Malaysian tour and in the printing a booklet on the tour.
Report of "Makan" Editor / Chief Correspondent for 12 months 1st Jan to 31st Dec. 1978.
In the 12 months under review we have published 6 Makans.
The average size has been 46 pages, which result is obtained by taking into account the King size Christmas issue with its supplement on Padre "Paddy" Walsh.
The contributions from Members over the year total 372. Of course in some cases more than one from the same Member, but then in many cases the one letter often refers to the activities of quite a few others, so that the purpose of “MAKAN” is being fulfilled as a newssheet on Members of the Battalion. The help from Area Representatives in this regard is very thankfully received.
The circulation has increased over the year from 437 to 459. In most cases of deaths, which total 11 Subscribers and 4 other of Battalion Members, who had died and had not been Subscribers, the Next of Kin have requested continuance of the magazine, so that their numbers have increased by 10; 19 Battalion Men have either joined or renewed membership after an absence, and Specials, i.e. Sister Unit Associations in 8 Div as well as some people, who are paying only for a copy of MAKAN, increased by 4, a total increase of 33.
I am very grateful for the assistance that I have received over the twelve months with the duplicating, addressing of envelopes, collating pages of each issue, stapling, folding, inserting; in envelopes. Such assistance has been given cheerfully by a band of helpers- Jack Maclay, Ray Rickards, (my chief stand-bys), Garry Evans, Jack Carey (until he was caught up with his move to Budgewoi), Fred Johnston and his son, Ken, "Doc" Wilson and Edith Berman, not forgetting my wife, June, and has helped immeasurably in getting "MAKAN' out to Members.
As Chief Correspondent copies of the minutes of Meetings of the Executive have been duplicated and posted out to Area Representatives, to let them know and pass on decisions of the Executive.
One of what Phil Schofield used to say were, 'self inflicted jobs' will be out shortly, that is a list of all deceased Members of the Battalion. I know that it is not, at this stage, a full list, because my figuring shows that there are 222 Members of the Battalion not Members of the Association. Different folk may be able to identify some as still alive, when comparing this list with the Alphabetical List of Members, but I feel that there may be many, who may have died, and such fact has not come to notice, especially where we have not heard of them for years or not at all since demobilization. Some of my details are not full enough to indicate the exact date of death, e.g. where we have only the year, where Members can fill in those sort of gaps we would be glad, if you would let us know. The idea in making this list arose from a remark of one, who said that he found him self talking of old comrades, only to have someone else in the group say, “Oh, So-and-So died”, and he had not known.
A second Self-Inflicted job is collecting together a set of all "MAKAN" that have been published. Great help has come from "Gentleman George" through Mrs Ramsay, from Noel Johnston, "Sluggo" Jones, Bert Hodges and Wally Scott. There are only a few outstanding now, mainly very early copies, the foolscap ones before introduction of the covers, and are No's 4,5,6,7,8,10,69, 83,95,97,99 and 125. If anyone has these and would lend them, for copying, we would be glad to do that and return the original.
Speaking of covers leads to the acknowledgment of the very generous donation of $507.16 from Mrs Lamble and Dr. John Sands, paying far the printing of the "MAKAN" Covers, as an endowment in the memory of their brother, Dick Sands, of C Coy, who was Killed in Action at Gemas.
One other Member of the Association very generously sent in a cheque for $200 towards meeting expenses of the production of MAKAN. This Member's name may not be divulged, as he wishes to remain "Anonymous" and his wishes have been respected. There have been many donations also of money from other people, these were also thankfully received and faithfully applied.
Expenditure by MAKAN Editor/Chief Correspondent will be set out in the Treasurer's Statement. Adding a few incidentals, Office Expenditures like typewriter ribbons, rubbers, sticky tape etc., the average expenditure in production of each issue is about $200, but the comments and thanks expressed in many letters, although not detailed throughout the pages of the MAKAN are heart-warming to the Editor and his Gang, and lead us to believe that Makan is indeed a link in the comradeship of the Association.
The venture of reprint of the Battalion History is set to come to fruition. There has been a delay due to troubles in the printing game, which could not be foreseen at the commencement of the project, and although it was hoped to have the books in the hands of those who have ordered and in many cases have subscribed for it already, the layout of the pages for the offset printing, or as it is called, the artwork, has had to be taken to bits, so that it may be recast for use on smaller machines than those originally intended to be used. This work is being undertaken by one of our Members at home, in order to contain the costs.
One other matter, which may be referred to by our President, but nevertheless has come to be through "MAKAN" and for which thanks is due to Mr. Ian Hamilton, and Mrs Helen Bell, is that Mr Hamilton has made a donation of his Father's copy of "Purple and Gold", the History of the 30 Bn A.I.F. 1st World War, as a Memorial to his Father, who was commissioned on the field, No 184 Lt. Frank A. Hamilton, and Mrs Bell, who has made a donation of her copy of "Galleghan's Greyhounds" as a Memorial to her Son, Wally, NX29925 L/Cpl W.L. Bell, 8 Pl. A Coy, 2/30 Bn. The books will be held by the Association and passed to the 17 Royal New South Wales Regt., especially its "A" Coy, the Successor to the NSW Scottish Rifles and all Units, known as 30 Bn. of A.I.F. and C.M.F.
Election Of Office Bearers is as set out on Page 1 of "MAKAN"
1. The Meeting carried a vote of thanks to Ron Foster for arranging the venue of the P.S.A. Club.
2. Flowing on from the highly successful tour of Malaysia and Singapore in January, it was resolved to constitute a Sub-Committee for the purpose of fostering friendly relations with these countries and particularly the Ex-Service Associations.
The Sub-Committee has power to co-opt and will report to the Executive in due course.
Ron Maston requested there be placed on record the sincere appreciation of the Tour Party to George Aspinall for his conduct as Official Photographer on tour.
3. It was decided to deal with Correspondence in hand. Arising therefrom:
a. Payment of subscription, to Australia-Malaysia-Singapore Association was approved.
b. Correspondence in connection with a request from St. Patrick’s School, Singapore, for donations towards a gymnasium. We are to reply to request that we are circulating the Appeal. The matter will be circulated in MAKAN and also referred to Ex-Ps.O.W. Association.
St. Patrick's School Development Appeal - St. Patrick's School, Katong, Singapore, 15.
The school is one conducted by the Christian Brothers. The first permanent buildings for boarders is now used as a canteen and further school buildings were constructed and came in to use before the War.
The school was used by the 10th Australian General Hospital, after it was moved on to Singapore Island.
It was used as an Oka Butai by the Japanese Air Command for Malaya and Singapore, and as an hospital again by the British Army after the Japanese Capitulation and during the Emergency in the Fifties.
Since it's reoccupation by the Christian Brothers a Primary section was moved to other buildings, St. Stephens, which had been built by St. Patrick's at a cost of $604,000 (Singapore Dollars).
This Appeal has quite a programme in view, but the immediate scheme is for a gymnasium to replace a Japanese built hall placed right in the middle of the school's playing fields, preventing the best use of the grounds.
The uses to which the new hall is to be devoted are:
- Enable increase in
effective field area of playing field by as much as 50% to be made.
The full development is to be spread over the years 1978-1985, the estimated cost of the first phase, the new gymnasium building, being $750,000 (Singapore Dollars). It is said that the pupils have raised the funds to meet one third the cost of projects, which have been completed already, such as construction of three cement tennis courts, air conditioned the library, provided theatrettes and an audio-visual centre, produced one of the finest music centres in South-East Asia.
A letter from one of the Committee for the Appeal to the Australian High Commissioner in Singapore has been sent on to our Committee. It mentions that the writer had learnt that the R.S.L. in Australia might be prepared to assist, since the Australian Troops had been temporary occupiers of their school, however the R.S.L. would like to know what Units were involved, and they had learnt that the 10th Australian General Hospital was one such Unit, however it was desired to know which other Units were involved, so that the Appeals Committee might be enabled to take up the matter formally with the R.S.L.
Whilst the 2/30 Bn is mentioned as a Unit, which had some relations with the school at the time of our being in both Singapore and Malaya in 1941- 42, the writer of the Committee letter may be construing work by some Members of our Unit as drivers for the 2/10 Field Ambulance in delivering wounded to the Hospital in the last weeks of the campaign on the Island to be that of the Unit as a whole.
We have a copy of a letter from the High Commissioner to the National Secretary of the R.S.L. at Canberra, by which the information set out above is passed to him, and commenting, "that there is a great deal to be said for spontaneous and private contacts between groups as this and bodies such as the R.S.L. in Australia”.
As set out in the Minutes of the Annual Meeting advice of this Appeal is circulated, but at present the Executive don't propose to do anything else at this stage. However, if the Appeal is taken up by the RSL and contributions are sought from any of the 8 Div., you may know something of the background in the information we have given. It is a matter, which is felt could be left to individuals, either on a National basis through the R.S.L. or some may feel inclined to involve themselves personally, in which case they might like to write to The Secretary, St. Patrick's School Development Appeal, Katong, Singapore 15, direct.
News, Views and Who's Who
Alan Charlton - HQ. Coy
Alan reports, "the door bell rang one recent Saturday Morning and there was Ron "Zipper" Charlton." Alan says that they don't make them any better than "Zipper". "He and Pearl were on the North Coast for a holiday, so we teamed up on the Monday evening for a good old yarn. My brother and his wife were over from Gunnedah, so there were Charlton's all over the town.
"A week or so later the chimes went again one evening, there were Angela and Wally Scott from Wollongong way. It is certainly good to gee old mates.
"We haven't had much rain aver March and it is very hot, but beautiful and green still. It is lovely on the golf links between 6.30 to 7 a.m. I am an early riser at 5.30 a.m; have a breakfast and go and play my idea of golf. It sets me up for the rest of the day. I am not early to bed, but I have a little nap about 2 pm of just about a half-hour or so.
"I saw a new (to me) ophthalmic surgeon in Lismore recently for a check up. He did a test on my eyes, that has been done only once before by an eye doctor at Grace Building, This new man then told me that the trouble, that I've had ever since returning from overseas, diagnosed and treated for 30 years as "Bepto Conjunctivitis" and caused me to be retired early by my employers, 'medically unfit', thereby losing me my superannuation rights, which I would have had, if they had kept me on for another 4 years, and the better pay in my job, instead of being on the pension, was not that at all but actually, dryness of my eyes, caused by malfunction of the tear glands (they are rot producing enough fluid) and he has prescribed artificial teardrops, which are helping quite a lot.
"So much for Doctors - of course this should have been known to the Repat. but they won't tell what they find. "Anyway, "Au Revoir" for now and Best Wishes to the “Gang", Alan."
Fred Newlands - A Coy.
Fred is reported to be keeping reasonably fit these days, and able to down his share of the 'amber fluid.
Doug McLaggan - HQ Coy.
Doug sent in a brief note. His main comment was that his memory is not so good these days. (Overwork, Doug? Ed)
Claire apologies for being late with a little news this time (not that we think it is late. We are glad to be kept in touch. Ed) and says, "Time has flown this year, with holidays away and then our Big Fishing Day for Legacy, at which we cleared One thousand one hundred and ten Dollars, $1110 on the day. Not as good as last year, but good for the day, seeing that it was raining in the morning of the day. (I'd say, wonderful and in a good cause too. Ed)
"Please remember me to all Cyril's Mates, Yours very sincerely, Claire Pluis."
Frank Webb - HQ Coy
"Spider" is also full of apologies. A brief note. "As well as can be expected". "My Regards to the Boys. Thanking one and all. Frank."
Phil Schofield - C Coy
Reports are that Phil's progress is such that both eyes have been operated upon. He has a pair of temporary spectacles with the lens for each eye set for the time being and till Phil is more used to them. Phil is satisfied to date I'm told. He was in a little trouble the other day I learnt. Boy Friday, giving help with the groceries, locked Phil's and the keys in his car, in the boot.
Vi expects that it will not be too long before she is at home. We wish both of them that they may improve and soon be back to normal.
Harry Teasdale - D Coy.
Flo sent word, "Harry enjoyed watching the Anzac March in Sydney and seeing his mates on T.V. and he hopes you all had a good day.
"Harry is keeping well and is about the same still.
"I had a very nice weekend for the wedding in Newcastle and Max brought his wife, Lyn, up home here for Easter and we really enjoyed their company.
"Anne and Brian Hayes paid us a visit recently, while on their annual holidays at Yamba.
"Alex and Mary Olley have returned home, just lately, from a well earned holiday in Perth to visit their son, Malcolm. "Kind regards to All, from Flo and Harry Teasdale."
Alice writes, "Mark is attending Ballina High still, he is in his final year, (year 12). He was 17 on the 6th March. He tried to get an entry to Duntroon Military College at Canberra. He had two trips to Sydney, but was cut out in the final selection, and, of course, is very disappointed. At present, he is concentrating on a good H.S.C. pass and is applying for everything that "bobs" up, hoping for something suitable to come.
"My other son, Jeff, is teaching at Bulahdelah. All last year he taught at Waratah High in Newcastle and was sorry to be moved from there.
George Lister - B Coy
Alice Larkin also reports on her brother, George Lister, saying, "George keeps fairly well. He and his wife have bought a mixed business recently at Mummulgum and seem happy with it.
"Their daughter, Marie, is teaching Primary School at Warwick Farm. Her brothers, Ray and Donald, live with her. Ray is attending University and Don is working.
"George and Nessie's eldest son, Bill, lives at Toowoomba. He is married and his wife has presented him with a daughter. He is in the R.A.A.F.
"All the Best and Kind Regards, especially to Phil Schofield, from Alice Larkin."
"Joe" Johnston - D Coy.
Joe's information is, "I and Syb were invited to a surprise 30th Wedding Anniversary for Bob and Bet Wells, Gresford, so we took a few days off and went down. It was indeed a surprise. Bob looked like a stunned plover, when he saw all the guests and me, also Ray and Mavis Godbolt, who had travelled up from Merewether. I was Bob's Best Man, so I would not have missed being there, if I could have made it some way or another.
"We had a wonderful Bar-B-Que in the evening, plenty of good food and fellowship and a good time was had by all,
"Unfortunately Sid and Isobel Grounds, who were to have attended, had to cancel the trip up, because Sid was not feeling Al at the time.
"While staying at Bob and Betts place we took the opportunity to call and say hullo to Dal Oldknow at Singleton.
"Dal looks well and, after 25 years of supervising a C. of E. Boys' Club, is giving serious thought to retiring.
"We spent a couple of hours with Dal, viewing some of the cuttings from the local papers and also invitations, which the chaps received, when first in camp. His dear old Mum had kept them for him and put them in a scrap book, so if anyone wants to see some of those old photos and paper clippings from early days, just call in on Dal. He would love to see any off the men, who are passing through; Singleton is so much on the Highway to many Districts in the North and North-West. He feels that he must miss a lot. His address there is 13 Edward St. Singleton. He has a very comfortable Batchelor's flat at the back of his home, in which he has a young nephew, his wife and baby living.
"After leaving Bob and Bet, we called in to see Jack and Phyl Carey and say Hullo to them. It was good to see them seemingly looking so well. When we called in, was the opportunity for Jack to switch off his mower and have a breather. They had us stay for lunch, as time passes quickly, when people are talking. Their home is right on the main road through Budgewoi and very easy to find. In fact it is, No 70 Scenic Drive and would you believe it, they have 'Batu Pahat' on the front wall. (Well, it seems Jack has found his 'Shangri-La' for his retirement. Ed) His invitation is out. Do drop in.
While we were away Brian and Anne Hayes called to see us. Sorry we were away, Brian and Anne.
"Till next lot of news, Best wishes to all, 'Joe'."
Dal Oldknow - D Coy
Dal himself put pen to paper, "I had a very enjoyable surprise with folk having a family party for my birthday."
"I am keeping well and still take an interest in the Boys' Club.
"A week ago I had a visit from Bob Wells and "Joe" Johnston, also their wives and we had an enjoyable several hours.
"Yours, Dal Oldknow."
Ron Stoner - C Coy.
Ron flew over to the East in the middle of April; then had business to attend to in Canberra; flew back again almost straight-a-way, and reported that he hopes to be over again either in June or July and will have a longer period here.
Ron tried to get in touch with your scribe both coming and going, but failed to find me in. (My apologies, Ron. Better luck next time. A.D. )
Edith is being well looked after by the War Widows' Welfare side of Legacy, in that her Legatee is supervising a major operation by carpenters on the floor of her back room.
She herself went into Concord Hospital for plastic surgery to the skin surrounding her eye. She is able to say she is improving, but she has to catch the surgeon for more work.
Reg Nossiter - B Coy
Reg comments, "As you can see by the address above, we have moved from Epping to Eastwood.
"Please give my regards to the Members of the Association. Sincerely, Yours, Reg Nossiter.
Noel ("Snow") Hampton - B Coy
Noel's words point to the fact that there must be a good story untold. He says, "Find enclosed one 'lost cheque' for my Life Membership and Association Badge. (It must be a case for 'All's well that ends well! Thanks, Noel. Ed)
"I'm having quite a bit of eye trouble and will be on treatment for the rest of my days. Naturally, I'm working on the supposition that they will extend for years to come.
"We had "Zip" Charlton and his charming wife drop in, as they were up here on the North Coast.
"We also had Allan and Elsie Walton call in on us, while holidaying.
"I'11 be in Sydney at the end of May for State Congress and hoping to see some of the Boys. (Preparations are in hand, Snow, at this end. Ed)
"Best regards to all the Boys, "Snow" Hampton."
Ashley Pascoe - B Coy
Last MAKAN led Ashley to ask to be given the address of Dudley Alford, Hon Sec. Near North Coast Branch of the Queensland Ex-Ps.O.W. Association, saying, "Dudley and I were Mates in Changi, when "F" Force was away on the 'Railway'. Fact is, we were booted out of Hospital to the Con. Depot, when the human wrecks entered the courtyard. Dudley and I stood and watched as they were unloaded from the trucks. The picture remains with me to this day. Men, who should have been 13 or 14 stone, wrecks of 5,6 or 7 stone. Many minus limbs, several covered in tropical ulcers; and the colour of their skin - Dudley and I looked at each other. We were robust compared to these frail creatures. We exclaimed how damned lucky we were. (But Repat. Doctors don't believe that Ashley. They never saw it. So, they claim that there was no strain on the heart in that condition or the reverse, when under better conditions and they can write 6 pages to an unfortunate widow, to tell her that their theories, outweigh fact, and cause them to disallow her claim for a war widow's pension, as they consider that the death of her husband from a heart attack was not attributable to war service. Ed)
"Dudley and I used to correspond for a while, after we came back, but he was engaged in well sinking in the hinterland of Queensland (he was in 2/26 Bn. Carriers) and we lost touch.
"Thanks so much for the latest "MAKAN". I find that even though I don't know, or cannot recall, many of the people mentioned, nevertheless it is good to read many of their stories and to realise that so many have made a success of life in so many ways.
"I commend you and the team for the comprehensive supplement included in the current MAKAN. It is a sad and revealing list of those, who had gone before, and further reminds one how fortunate one has been. It has been said, 'One shall be taken, the other left'. Makes one think. (Thanks from' the team for your commendation, Ashley. Ed.)
"There are two or three comments I would like to make:
Firstly, as regards Pte. A.E. Hodges - I think that must be whom we called 'Fred', whose sister afterwards married Alan Gilbert. Fred was killed in a truck accident somewhere on the Lower North Shore. The truck went over an embankment. I remember calling on Mrs Hodges to express my condolences, and, as I wrote you last year, he, Terry O'Rourke, Hilton McLaren, Neil Sellers, and I spent quite a deal of our time at Changi working in the garden.
Secondly, Clem Jobson was working on the staff of Concord Hospital, the last time that I saw him. He was a good bloke. He suffered badly with amoebic dysentery, but was a damned good worker. He was one of the unfortunates to come home to a broken marriage.
Then, Arthur Reilly was a neighbour of mine, when we lived at Uralba near Alstonville. He was a cane cutter, among other things. What you might not know, is that his brother, Wal, was killed in New Guinea, I think that he was in the 2/4 Pioneers, whilst his brother-in-law, Greg Morris, was 'Missing believed killed' in Singapore. He was in the 2/20 Bn. What tragedies some families suffer during wars. I do not think his parents survived long after the war.
"With Best Wishes to All, Regards, Ashley Pascoe."
Dick Tompson - HQ Coy, Carriers
Dick writes, "I still keep myself fully occupied in my retirement and often express the sentiment - how did I ever have the time to go to work.
"I continue a good deal of fishing and went surf fishing only yesterday.
"I wish All, every joy and, most of all, good health. Regards, Dick Tompson."
Marty Wallwork - HQ Coy
A short note from Betty says, "At the moment we are all keeping well."
Horrie Cody - A Coy
Horrie reports, "Ron and I had a very nice day on Anzac Day in Sydney. It was great to see so many of the fellows, whom we had not seen for so long.
"We are keeping well down here at Bomaderry, although the arthritis in my neck and spine takes it out of me. "Zelma sends her kind regards to all 2/30 Boys.
E.W. (Bill) Wallis - C Coy
Bill remarks, "I am keeping well. I see Sid Stephens fairly often. We had a few days fishing together before Easter and, I’m happy to say, that we had a good catch each time. No need to tell the old story of 'the one that got away'.
"I also see Freddie Hume occasionally. He appeared to be quite well the last time I saw him.
"Trusting all the old boys are keeping fit. Kindest regards to All. Bill Wallis."
R.E.J. (Bob) Surtees - C Coy
Bob commences, "Greetings: I have received my "MAKAN", with which was enclosed the long list of the Bn. Personnel, who, in one way or another, and over the intervening years have passed on. I was extremely glad to get this, for it awoke in me my Bn. job of Orderly Room Sgt for "C" Coy. To me it made very sad reading indeed, especially coming across many names of men, whom I knew so well, not only in my own Coy, but in the other Coy’s as well, and of whom I hadn’t heard for a long time. How true are those last few words, "At the going down of the Sun and in the Morning, We will remember them". It makes one realise just how strong are the bonds and ties that bind comrades in arms together. Men, who have lived, fought and suffered in conditions that only fighting men and particularly Ps.O.W. can share, is an experience, that time can never erase, and even though we do not see ever again those, with whom we lived and suffered, our affinity never dies.
"I had intended to write following receipt of the Dec. MAKAN, but never got around to it. However the day it arrived, I spent many sentimental and nostalgic hours going through all the bits and pieces, which I have relative to those days of 1941 -1945: photos, diaries, some menus and papers, as well as the official history of the 2/30 Bn: it was a journey down memory lane I will long remember.
"For the sake of those, who may be interested, the following is a brief summary of my experiences, since being de-mobbed. I was married in Feb. 1947 to my pre-war girl friend, Sylvia Foster. We have had four children, 2 girls and 2 boys. All except Geoffrey, who will be 21 years old at the end of May, are married and happily so. Judith, our eldest, between Forster and Taree and has a girl and a boy. Donald is a school teacher and lives with his family at Yagoona though they will be moving to Leura soon; he has a girl and boy also. Patricia lives at Toongabbie, she is a Pre-School Kindergarten Director. and to date has no children. Geoff is a cabinet maker at Chiswell Furniture Factory. All are healthy and all are actively engaged with their partners in Church work. I am thankful to God, that we are a close-knit family - and share many things together and in common. Our grandchildren are super; but then all grandparents think alike, don’t they.
My first job, after returning to Civvy Street, was to go back to G.J. Coles at Burwood for a few weeks. Then Ray Simmons asked me to go and start work with him as a carpet and lino layer. I stayed with his firm, called Celesco Pty Ltd, for 18½ years, After this I went to work at "Castle" Caravans Pty Ltd at Wahroonga for 13½ years, where, by the way, one or two of the 30th boys, called to see me. There I became the Manager of the large fleet of modern hire vans and later Mgr. of a Spare Parts and Service Dept. I retired from "Castle" on the 1st Dec 1977 at the age of 63 yrs. This was an early retirement, brought on by eye problems.
"Nearly six years ago I suffered a detached retina in my right eye and was immediately bundled into the R.P.A. Hospital. The first operation was a failure, largely owing to the fact, that I had an advanced cataract on the eye. However, a second operation fixed the retina, but left me with double vision, which I still have. Furthermore, I have a cataract on my left eye.
"'Despite all this I can still do very well at seeing - one gets used to almost anything and learns to live with disabilities with God's help. Time for me does not drag. I cannot read for very long and comprehension is bad. My memory is poor, but I can use my hands and, since knocking off work, I have been very busy making and selling quality wooden toys and wood craft generally. In between times I am making an old time model sailing ship.
"All in all I get along fairly well. My general health is satisfactory. In fact, only last year, I was doing 50 push-ups each morning.
"I have learnt from the copies of the journal, sent to me, that a few of my close comrades are up and about and still with us. If I were to mention names it might be to leave out some, purely from lack of memory - however, to all, who remember me I say, "Cheers"..
"I will look forward to receiving all future copies of “MAKAN" and, who knows, but that some day, I will see some of you again.
"Keep up the good work of the Association. Your old Comrade-in-arms, Bob Surtees."
Florence Bennie - Widow of Cliff Bayliss, ‘I’ Section Bn HQ
Florence has congratulated the MAKAN team for providing '"an excellent way to keep all members of the Bn in touch.""
(Thank you very much, Florence. Ed)
Jack Black - HQ Coy, Carriers.
Report has been received that Jack's youngest son was to be married on Saturday, 5th May and that the event was satisfactorily carried out. We wish the young couple every happiness.
George Aspinall, - HQ Coy
George tells that the Centre Point Tower, where he has been working for some time, has reached the stage that his type of work is completed and he is now out at the new ICI Project at Botany, where his work is as site co-ordinator for electrical work on site. He has to have a knowledge of the various stages, to which the different electrical teams have brought their separate tasks, by them reporting in at the end if their day's work, so that he can keep coordination between teams and know that each one will reach the tie-in point with another one on scheduled date, with no hold up. As there are about 200 electricians there now on the 9 hectare site, he has some job to keep things working smoothly.
Alex Snow (Lt) Deceased.
Your scribe was a sitting shot for Eric Stone on Anzac Day. "Ah-Hah,." he says, "I've caught you out, why did you leave Alex Snow out of your list?" I smugly thought he's wrong this time. But, no It was not the list of the deceased, but that of the Sig. Platoon. I had to admit it. Eric was correct. By a chance Alex. was one of those, able to fill in on several jobs. He was on the Platoon HQ. team, I'm told and could fill in wherever any of the regulars of Switchboard or Wireless Operators were absent, and his name was omitted in error. I'm sorry.
Eric and Alex. were cobbers, a common love of Soccer and other sports, with a difference in ages of a mere 3 months, drew them together.
My thanks to Eric for telling me of my mistake. I hope that anyone else, who finds me out in an error, will quickly let me know.
I would rather that an error be corrected, than that it be left and create more errors later on.
Graham McLeod - Bn HQ
Our Reporters have also discovered that Graham McLeod's wife and daughter are touring overseas and that, on Anzac Day, were to be in Amsterdam, after a time in the U.K. commencing a sojourn on the Continent, with the coincidence of meeting there Ron and Lesley Ollis, whose tour in Europe would have been at an end by then.
One other news item is that, daughter, Vicki, may decide to remain in England to further her career.
Ray Duncombe - HQ Coy
Ray rang to see if we had any Battalion ties left, as he wished to sport a new one on Anzac Day. Unfortunately I had to disappoint him, since the Executive had decided against obtaining a fresh supply. He says that he is not too bad healthwise, considering his age, and that he helps himself through the winter by having an anti-flu injection. His son-in-law has urged that, as it works with him, he ought to have it twice a year, in August and February, in an effort to ward off all colds and flu’s. Ray was one of those, waiting at the POW Rooms to greet the Boys, as they came along from the March, on Anzac Day; he was his usual debonair self. He also had the addition to our Last Post Supplement with the name of Dan Conquit, DX Borneo.
Jack Carey - D Coy
A phone call from Jack, who said that he would have to be disappointed by not coming down from Budgewoi this year, the first after his move up there, as he had treatment to his nose since it was haemorrhaging and the treatment had been to cauterize it. He was not A1 yet, even although his son-in-law was to have driven him down and made apologies to Don Coy men.
He also says, "The house is painted inside and out and I'm looking forward to some of the Boys calling. There will be something in the fridge, always. The house is on the main road through Budgewoi and no one should have to say they missed it."
Ron Eaton - 1Bn HQ
A third 'phone call and Betty Eaton gave me news, first family-wise, that their daughter had come back from overseas; their son and his fiancée had announced their engagement. They plan to be married in July. Ron was in Perth, at a ceremony in connection with Overseas Containers Australia Pty Ltd's 10th Anniversary of the date of the Company's Office being opened there.
Betty also mentioned a Dress Parade, which was to be held on the Thursday immediately following Anzac Day, and which was being arranged by the Ladies' Committee of the Australia-Malaysia-Singapore-Association, which had been fostered by "B.J.". It had established the "Sir Frederick Galleghan Memorial Award" in his honour, providing for one selected Malaysian and another Singaporean to make 28-day visits to Australia for the purpose of conferring with Australian colleagues in their field of work., It requires continual fund-raising efforts to raise finance, so that those gaining the awards, would have fares to and from Australia and accommodation costs paid by the Association.
Whilst notice of this particular function was too late for the last 'MAKAN', the request is made; would anyone at all, who sympathises with the aims of the Association, either seek donations, or arrange any local function in their own District for the purpose of raising money for the Association and send any proceeds to Betty Eaton or to Lady Galleghan, remembering, of course, that such appeals are directed not only to 2/30 Bn. or even to 8 Div., but to all in Australia, since "B.J." worked for Australia as a whole, not for any one Unit or Div, solely.
Alan Penfold - Bn HQ,
Another one of our Reporters has come up with the news amongst old "I Section" Men that Alan and Marjorie Penfold, having completed the task of moving back to a Unit, actually in the same building, in which they were earlier, are set to journey to the United Kingdom again in the coming August.
Ian and Olga Pryce left for overseas a month ago. Let's hope that Ian does not let their touring around be disturbed by any sicknesses this time; it may be remembered, that it was reported in 1976 that he caught pneumonia in Switzerland.
Alex Campbell's second son, Andrew, who married a Highland lassie in 1975, has brought her out to Australia in the last couple of months and has found himself a suitable job here in Sydney.
Jack Mathews - D Coy
Jack rang your scribe from the Zebra Motel, Elizabeth St. Sydney, near Hyde Park, on 29th March, to let me know he'd come down to Sydney with a team of Bowlers from the Main Roads Board Men in Brisbane, playing their opposite numbers here in Sydney. A circulating activity in that one year, Brisbane men are here in Sydney and the next year the Sydney men go to Brisbane.
The team had been down in Sydney for a few days at the time Jack rang and had been to Bargo on the Tuesday and to Wollongong on the Wednesday for matches against Main Roads' Bowls Teams in those two Districts. The programme provided for a Thursday match at the City Club in College Street, with one more match at Randwick on the Friday, and they were leaving on the return trip to Queensland on the Saturday.
A few phone calls and, although they were not able to get in to see him, I understand some of his cobbers were able to have a chat with him over the phone.
F.R.B. (Snowy) Stevens - HQ Coy
We learnt that Snow and Evelyn are another pair touring round to see this world of ours. Their trip this time was over to New Zealand, which they found very attractive.
Sid Stephens - HQ Coy
Sid and Joan Stephens are leaving Sydney mid May on a trip to China. They enjoy seeing conditions and the sights of other countries and Australia too, and budget with the bawbees for such trips as seem worthwhile.
Andy Noble - D Coy
The travel bug has certainly bitten quite a few, here's another couple. Andy and Betty left on a World Trip towards the end of March, but Andy did the right thing by the Association to vet the accounts for the Annual Meeting before they left. Your scribe had to deliver a Receipt Book to him for checking and as Artie Power was to be in Sydney for a check-up at Grace Building and had sought assistance from me getting round the City especially after drops were put in his eyes, we both wandered down York Street to where Andy's Office was. The receptionist told Andy on the inter-com that he had visitors and, when Andy came out through the swing doors, his face revealed the welcome, but he could not name Arty, although he tried, so Artie had to tell him who he was. We are all the same, remember the faces, but stumble on the names, so that we have to beg forgiveness.
Artie had two appointments, one in the morning and another in the afternoon. His eye appointment was for the afternoon, and it was not a hit and miss affair. He had a lady doctor, who carried out the examination, and Artie had three trips into the consulting room over a period from 1.30 to 4 pm to be told that the nerves of his eyes had long since died and that that was the reason why his sight was so bad.
E.E. ("Curly") Heckendorf - Bn HQ
Curly and Rose were down in Sydney early April in order to watch the King's School Eight in the G.P.S. Regatta on the Nepean, since one of their boys, Tony, was rowing in the Eights, King's was not one of the first three, but they certainly put up a good fight.
Other news is that Curly’s daughter, Joan, has presented Curly with a grandson, Cameron David, to spoil, if she'll let him
Bet is hoping to be able to travel to England in order to pay a visit to her sister, whom Bet has not seen for 59 years, but, she has to get three doctors' certificates for the airline office, on her fitness to go on the trip. She is a good battler but is experiencing trouble still with her hand and had to go to Mona Vale Hospital for another operation to it. One of Or grand-daughters is there as a nurse, so she was well looked after. However, Bet feels that the hand will never get better.
She asks to send her regards to all Len's old mates.
Bruce Upcroft - D Coy
Bruce was the victim of light fingered gentry during the week before Anzac Day. He was only away from the house for a short time, but his habits must have been so regular as to have been noted. The burglars souvenired his T.V. Set, Jewellery and some other valuables; included amongst these was one of his most prized possessions, or even if he did not classify it as such, he should have, that was his Bn. Association. Badge. So it was your scribes DUTY on Anzac Day to see that he was properly dressed, with another one for his coat lapel.
Mrs Ing is a niece of Harry, who is at present a patient in Concord in Ward 34. She advises that Harry will be transferred from Concord to a Nursing Home, when his present illness is cleared; which Nursing Home and when the transfer will take place, is not known at present, but he will not be returning to his flat at Manly. Mrs Ing has given her address for correspondence to Harry in the meantime, but naturally, she says, that Harry will welcome any of his old cobbers to look him up at Concord in Ward 34, while he is there.
George Gough - BHQ Band
George's open heart surgery at St Vincent's Hospital is now proving of great benefit to him. Nevertheless he is not racing round, nor carrying the Big Bass Drum in his Band at Liverpool; but he tells me that they asked him to put on his uniform and join some other of his old cobbers, who were the originals, when the Band was started up about 30 years ago; and to be at the Cenotaph at Liverpool, when the Band arrived, the only duty for George was the laying of their wreath at the Memorial, and then to lunch with them.
He commends the care, that St. Vincent's Hospital takes in after operation checking of such patients, as he was, sending out a taxi to take George and Nan to Darlinghurst for his tests.
Harry Holden - B Coy
"Reveille" for May/Jun carried a list on page 7 of the Nominations for Election of 1979/80 State Council of the RSL. Many positions were filled, where only one Nominee's name was received for the post, but for the Monaro and Far South Coast one other besides Harry was nominated, so that a ballot was required to be decided amongst the Sub-Branches in the District. Harry will be at the Conference as a Delegate however.
Ron ("Jacko") Jackson - B Coy
One of Jacko's mates at work rang the other night to let us know that "Jacko" had not arrived at work on time as usual, and that, when they rang his home to find out what was wrong, it was learnt that he had left at his usual time for work; not knowing, if he might have had an accident to delay him, a couple of men from the works set out to back-track over the route that he would have taken and ultimately found that he had gone no further than his garage, where he had collapsed. He is at present in Royal North Shore Hospital. On the previous Sunday he and Ron Johnston, who was down from the Gold Coast to attend a wedding of a nephew, had one of their infrequent games of golf, since Ron has forsaken Sydney, and was his usual self. (Here's hoping you'll be on your feet in short time, Jacko. A.D.)
Andy Hyslop - Bn HQ I Sect.
Andy tells me that he will be going into the Gosford Hospital on Sunday, 27th May, for some surgery and expects to be up and about shortly afterwards. He reckons that few would equal his record of 50 years without a major sickness and no Hospitalisation. At 73 last November he is certainly very active for his age.
Jack Maclay - B Coy
Jack is going to try out the new Hospital at Westmead for the operation on his second eye, as his specialist is satisfied with the success of the op. on his other eye. He also has his marching orders, but next Sunday. As he is to join the ranks of the three score years and ten Brigade come next Aug. he is another who carries his age well. I wonder if this game of Bowls that they play has anything to do with it?
Ken Crispin - Bn HQ I Sect.
Ken is one of those, into Concord for Clinical Tests and out again. I understand that Ken has been having Blackouts, for which the Medical Team has not yet diagnosed the cause,
Eric Arps - A Coy
One of our Reporters has informed us that Eric and Rhona enjoyed a holiday tour to Singapore and Hong Kong, with 6 days in Singapore and 5 days in Hong Kong, Eric returning to work on 24th January last. Bookings had been made with a group tour, before arrangements with the Bn Visit to Malaysia were defined.
"Hank" Massey - HQ Coy, Sigs.
Ray Rickards and Jack Maclay constituted themselves as a visiting Committee and called on "Hank" the other day. They found him the old "Bushie" of old. Ready to put the kettle on and settle down for a good old yarn over the teapot, and to see that the pot had a good brew and plenty for another "Cuppa".
Marty Pearce (Tom's Brother)
Marty was on the North Coast at Ballina; then Nambucca Heads, but the family wanted him to be closer to them, so he has moved down to the above address at Bateman’s Bay, where he would like any of the Battalion, especially of the Transport or C Coy, to look him up and talk to him about Tom’s Army life. Marty was in the Middle East himself. Arnie Ainsworth, you'll be the nearest of the old Transport Platoon, can you help, please?
Stan Coultas - C Coy
Elsie has sent in to change Stan over to Life Membership as well as his sub for 'MAKAN", and says that an Aunt had died (We are sorry to hear of your loss, Elsie) and that she had been up in Brisbane far the last three months settling the affairs of the Aunt's Estate and arranging to take her Uncle down to Cootamundra to live with her and Stan, as her Uncle is 80 years of age.
Elsie concludes her letter, "I was away for three months. "Kind Regards and Best Wishes to All the Battalion. Elsie Coultas."
Jim Saunderson - C Coy
Jim was on deck on Anzac Day marching with us. He always carries himself well and, as Alan Pryde has commented, is well over 6 ft tall, outwardly appears to be very fit, although the malnutrition on "A" Force has resulted in blindness.
Jack Stuart - HQ Coy, Transport Pl.
Sid Stephens has given the above address for one, who has not been seen for quite a while, but he was not able to give a lot more at the time, I was on S.T.D. but we will be glad to get more news later. Apart from Transport men, who will be glad to get in touch with him, I have been able to answer a query from Les Davidson's widow, from Anzac Day 1978, old Maroubra mates.
Little Brown Lamb
A stray in the flock, a
little brown lamb,
Identity and past buried
Though I'm unwanted as
part of the flock,
He'll lead me through the
gates of His mighty fold,
I'll know the love of
Ted Rickards (1972)
I'm Fine Thank You.
There is nothing the
matter with me
Arch supports I have for
The moral is this as my
tale I unfold -
How do I know that my
youth is all spent?
Old age is golden, I've
heard it said,
When I was young, my
slippers were red,
Now I am old, my slippers
Some doggerel, which Allan Venn forwarded, saying that it had appeared in the T.P.I. Magazine, but that the author's identity is not known