'QSO the World'

The aim of this page is to pass on articles of interest to serving & ex-serving Communicators  and interested parties.  I am sure that many of the contributor names listed below will be familiar to other shipmates.

We are now in direct contact around the globe via the Internet and email, so we are truly  QSO the World”

This is not an on-line forum, if you would like Comms related articles published on this page please send me an email.

I update the website regularly and will publish your article (with accompanying photo/s if you wish) as soon as I am able.

Follow this link for previous years QSO.

John Curbishley
Web Yeoman

December 2016

Vale Gary Jon 'Norm' Duscher R96346

JJ has informed us that Norm (Gary) Duscher has succumbed to Pancreatic Cancer and has passed away after fighting the good fight.

Love to JJ, Ben, Sam and families.

Jen Barrett
Very sad news. Our thoughts and best wishes go out to JJ and family.  Lest We Forget.

Gary's service will be conducted by Archer and Sons At 11am next Friday 30 December at Bunbury crematorium Hales road Bunbury WA PH 9721 3191 and afterwards you are invited to a wake to be held at Bunbury Bowling Club Forrest Ave Bunbury from 12-2pm. Numbers attending would be helpful but not essential.
Jenny, Sam Duscher and Ben Duscher.

From Phil & Marion Butler:

Our condolences go out to JJ and family.  We are thinking of them on this very sad occasion.


Ken 'Keghead' Weaver back in Sick Bay

Good Afternoon All,

I have just received a text message from Ruth Weaver advising that Keghead's doctor has recommended he be returned to hospital. Ruth was in the process of calling an ambulance when she texted me.

As many of you may well be aware Keg's health has not improved much since he was discharged from hospital in early November.

Are thoughts are with Ruth, Keghead and his family and hopefully a better outcome can be achieved on this return to hospital.


Ken Eynon
President RANCBA (ACT)
21 Dec 2016
We all hope for a good result, hopefully it will be provided by the experts.

Update from Ken Friday 23 Dec:
I visited Keghead in the Coronary Care Unit at Calvary Hospital in Belconnen this afternoon and Ruth was by his side. Keg seems to be in considerable pain and discomfort and not at all talkative although he knows who is in the room. He will be in hospital over Christmas which is not good, but certainly the best thing for him and Ruth until they can get to the root of his problems. From my observations Keg needs Ruth with or near him almost full time.

As you would expect it is a difficult time for Ruth, who is spending most of her time with Keg and at the hospital and at the same time managing their household and keeping Kegs family and friends aware of his condition.

If you wish to contact Ruth may I suggest you do so via a Text Message to 0403 500 700. This way she will be able to answer you at her convenience.

Ken Eynon

Update from Artie Wyatt Thursday 29 Dec:
Dropped in at the hospital and saw Keg and Ruth the other day, he appears to be picking up a little, but may be some time yet. Gave them both our best wishes, but I left as soon as the Asian SBA came searching for blood. Had a similar experience in Calvary earlier this year, they seem to miss nearly every time and you end with a dartboard for a right arm.

Best wishes to you all for the New Year, and lets all try to stay healthy
Artie W

Reunion for Q Class Destroyer/Frigate Personnel - Penrith March 16th -17th 2017

Train station close handy by cab/bus to Mecure Hotel and RSL.  Cenotaph walking distance from RSL.


Special rate Mecure Hotel ($175 per night) mention ' Q class Navy'.  Big 4 Caravan park handy various other Hotels/motels in Penrith & surrounds.


Thursday 16th meet up Penrith RSL proceed 300m to Cenotaph Memory Park for commemoration and wreath laying 4 wreaths — 1 per ship (supplied) Sunset 7.11 PM - Medals and caps please return to RSL for nibbles and beers.

Friday 17th Meet up at Penrith RSL 11am 1pm-4pm sit down 3 course meal $50 per head pay at door
casual dress name tags- ship.

Main notice Vetaffairs next issue November call for numbers and partners attending Friday lunch for caterers.

Please inform Bryan Burdett if you would like to be there.

President HMAS Quickmatch Association
Email Bryan Burdett
Telephone 03 9872 4443


XMAS Get Together – Sydney Harbour Cruise

On Tuesday, 13th December , some of the NSW Chapter had a great time out on Sydney Harbour, courtesy of a very stalwart Member, Brian Gray.

We started to muster at number 5 King Street Wharf at about 11.30am and by this time the weather was now touching 35 degs C, so what better place to get relief than on the best harbour in the world.  At midday we board our vessel, and we had been allocated the upper deck for RANCBA Members, and we slipped, and about a minute later, most were partaking of a nice cold ale or a wine. Then advised that , should we wish to go and make your selection for the luncheon, prawns, cold meats, salads , various rice dishes to name just a few.

Then settle back, eat, drink and spin yarns (all true!!!!)

Whilst we were cruising Sydney Harbour, we were joined by maxi yachts for the Big Boat Challenge, they are big. This included SCALLYWAG, WILD OATS etc, this being a trial test prior to the Boxing Day Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race . This was not planned, but just added more to a great day.

Some of those onboard, Ken & June Swain, Alan & Dot Murgatroyd, Ray & Sharon Mundy, Dave Turner, Doug & Gianna Calder , Owen Perkins, Sylvia Manners, Max & Cheryl Miller, Dave Sutherland, Don & Jan Ferguson, John Short and friend, Lesley Lalor, Ric & Jan Easom and friends from their Retirement Village, Andy & Jan Mills, Allan & Helen Moffatt, – I do apologise for those that I have missed. I couldn't believe some that joined us on this day and I had not seen for so many years.

It was a great afternoon and with the weather still climbing to 37-38 degs C, it was a relief to be out on the water for 4 hours of cruising, fine food and beverages and enjoyment with friends.

Now, I would like to take this opportunity .



Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW Chapter


On Thursday, 8 December 2016, 20:56, John White wrote:

For those that wish to get the most out of tourism as they travel to Port Fairy for the regional reunion in march 2017, I have the following information for you. Firstly please note that if you would like to travel via the Great Ocean Rd, it is best to travel East to West as all the areas you can pull over to take in the views are on the ocean side of the road - South.

There are two ways to get to Port Fairy from the general direction of Melbourne. Travel on the Princes Hwy towards Geelong - note the new Hwy by-passes Geelong. The first and fastest route is to continue past Geelong via Colac, Camperdown & Warrnambool. This is a simple drive and I recommend Camperdown for lunch. It has some excellent cafes and beautiful large trees throughout the township. After Camperdown keep your eye out for the many stone walls that determine property boundaries, many 100 years old. They have been restoring these walls and some are really beautiful.

For an outstanding drive, take the Great Ocean Road but be sure to allow the whole day. Prior to commencing the drive you could stay at the Big4 Anglesea for a day or two and Rachel and I will look after you. Apart from a good discount we can advise you of further viewing spots and an excellent map of the GOR (One in Chinese if you prefer). If you cannot stay with us, here are a number of options along this beautiful drive. Just before you reach Anglesea, on a stretch know as the mad mile is the GOR Chocolaterie. A massive display of all forms of chocolate with 40 Chocolatiers, 38 French and Belgium plus 2 Aussies being trained. A huge place with a 350 seat cafe. Also if you are travelling the Princes Hwy then I can advise you how to take in this fabulous establishment.

After leaving Anglesea you travel through Aireys Inlet together with Fairhaven. There is a famous pole house in Fairhaven beside the GOR and a beautiful view of the ocean along this stretch. Then the memorial to those that built the road (The Arch) is a popular stop. then as you wind through the bush you pop out in Lorne. A beautiful town very popular with tourists and holiday makers. It has a permanent population of 900 which grows to well over 20,000 in holiday periods. Then comes the bushfire and landslide ravaged small holiday towns of Wye River and Kennet River before you reach Apollo Bay. A good spot for lunch. Once upon a time the good Submarine HMAS Otway did surface just offshore with the boys going off for a spot of lunch, no doubt and a drink or also.

You can then visit Cape Otway if you wish to wander off the GOR, otherwise continue to the 12 Apostles. Next a stop off at the Cheese factory at Allensford is worthwhile, you will notice the site where most of the Western districts milk is processed also. You then rejoin the Princes Hwy to Warrnambool with a further 28 Km to Port Fairy. The park is on the left of the Hwy just prior to the township.

For those that would like a stopover in Anglesea or a visit to the Chocolaterie, or any other information, please call me on 0418 524 067 and I can run through all options with you. There will be further updates in the New Year so until I would like to wish everybody a very healthy and Happy Christmas and new year with your families.

John White

Bill Aylott in Sick Bay

Sonja Hellier advises that:

"I had a phone call from Bill's wife Val advising that Bill has just been transferred to the Peninsular Private Hospital following amputation of his right leg due to major problems with his circulation caused by his current heart condition.

Val can be contacted on 07 3293 0723".

Thanks Sonja.  Our best wishes go out to Val & Bill as well as our for hope for a speedy recovery.

From Bill Aylott ... I am actually in the rehab section of Peninsula Private & all being well, will be discharged in time for xmas albeit wheelchair bound. I am on air re my ipad at or 0418 414 732. A merry xmas & happy new year to all.


RANCBAVIC & Southern Region - Regional Reunion 2017

The committee has decided to respond to a number of requests and hold the next Reunion in a warmer time of the year. Therefore the 2017 reunion will be held in Port Fairy on the weekend of 24, 25 & 26th of march 2017.The venue will be the Big4 Port Fairy holiday park - phone 03 5568 1145. Once again a 10% discount will be given to our group bookings. Please book as RANCBA group and available accommodation includes: Motel style rooms, cabins of all sizes, onsuite sites & normal sites including some oversize sites.

We are working on a number of interesting options for the Saturday. The following are locked in - Meet & greet Friday evening at the park - Saturday morning a complimentary pancake breakfast provided by the park. Daytime Saturday is to be advised. Saturday Evening will be a two course meal at the Port Fairy RSL with bus transfers to and fro and Sunday morning breakfast at the park which includes Reggie Robbins train smash.

This year we have extended an invitation to the EX WRANS association to join us at the Reunion. We are very pleased to welcome those ex WRANS that may join us for the wonderful camaraderie we have built up with these reunions.

Please note that the park has a heated indoor pool for your enjoyment. Somewhere we will slot in a mini golf tournament also at the park, 18 holes with a shotgun Start and a number of prizes. Depending on numbers each hole will start with between 2 and 4 players.

Another change will be the meet & greet - the girls workload has grown enormously as we have grown, therefore we have decided to discontinue the girls catering and will run a system whereby we order say 10 Pizzas or similar and ask each of the ladies to provide a plate. We will send out a number of plate options for the ladies to choose and advise us their option. This does not eliminate bringing a plate that we have not listed. If anybody would like further information or has any queries, please ring me on 0418 524 067.

There will be further updates as we progress as well as advise on the online payment system, bus and meal payments and plate options for the meet & greet. Feel free to arrive earlier and/or depart later as quite a few do always.
We will have further updates as we progress our planning. Don't hesitate to ring if you are not certain of anything at all.

John White


November 2016


Today, the 27th November 2016, this marked the 75th Anniversary of the sinking of the destroyer HMAS PARRAMATTA II by the German submarine U559.

This ship had been Commissioned on the 8th April 1940 and was carrying out duty on the Tobruk Run to supply those at the siege of El Alamein by the German Afrika Corp and sadly was sunk . In November of 1941, it was a bad period for the Royal Australian Navy, as on the 19th November 1941 the Cruiser, HMAS SYDNEY , during an engagement with the German Raider, KORMORAN , a total of 645 Officers and Sailors were lost and a week later, on the 27th November 1941 , HMAS PARRAMATTA II was sunk by U559 with a loss of 138 Officers and Sailors with only 24 survivors. It was indeed a period of great sadness with the loss of so many young Australian Naval personnel

To remember, this Service was held today at the HMAS PARRAMATTA II Memorial, located at the Queens Wharf Reserve, and it is a large piece of granite with 4 anchors , chained in each corner.  It commenced with a very small march and accompanied by a Detachment of the RAN Band and more importantly , a contingent of serving personnel of the current HMAS PARRAMATTA IV. Along with those present, it was very pleasing to see young school children who also marched.

Mr. Russel Jardine, President of the Parramatta Memorial of the Sub Section of the NAA carried out the duty of the MC.  The Welcome was given by Ms. A Chadwick , Administrator of the City of Parramatta Council, who gave a good speech and welcomed all

Following, Chaplain Andrew Lewis RAN , gave the Reading, he spoke how he had been a previous Chaplain serving on HMAS PARRAMATTA IV, and then asked all to join with the Naval Prayer, and on completion, he gave the Address.

The Oration was given by Commander S. Howard CSM RAN, current Commanding Officer of HMAS PARRAMATTA IV , and he spoke of when entering Sydney Harbour on the previous Friday afternoon, he reflected how, he had exactly the same number of Officers and crew who had been on HMAS PARRAMATTA II but many were never to return . His speech was very well received by all.

The Wreath Laying and Book Laying Ceremony then commenced , and the first was by Commodore Lee Goddard CSM RAN , a former Commanding Officer of HMAS PARRAMATTA IV, Ms A. Chadwick, Parramatta Council, along with Mr. Paul Gerrard, A former Lord Mayor of Parramatta, Commander S. Howard CSM RAN, current Commanding Officer HMAS PARRAMATTA IV. This was followed by many and to name just a few, partners and relatives of those former crew who Paid the Supreme Sacrifice, Mr. John Haines AM, State President of the NSW RSL and many surrounding RSL Sub Branches. I had the honour to represent the Federation of Naval Ships Association and was accompanied by my wife Helen, and Mr Ray Mundy the RANCBA, accompanied by Mrs Sharon Mundy.

All were asked to Stand for the Naval Ode & Ode to be Recited by Mr. Ron Smith OAM, Castle Hill RSL Sub Branch.  The Last Post was played by a Bugler of the RAN Band - A Minutes Silence was Observed – and then Reveille by the RAN Bugler

All were asked to remain standing for the Naval Hymn – Eternal Father , and then the Blessing by Chaplain Andrew Lewis RAN and then to all join for the singing of the Australian National Anthem

A very organised and conducted Service and a credit to all concerned, and it is hoped that this Service will continue and those that Served aboard HMAS PARRAMATTA II and gave their lives for their Country will never be forgotten

Lest We Forget

Allan Moffatt OAM

L/R - CDRE Lee Goddard CSM RAN, Ms. A. Chadwick, Allan Moffatt, OAM, Sharon & Ray Mundy, Cmdr S. Howard CSM, CO HMAS PARRAMATTA IV.

Cummins Wreath

Just checked out the website, usually try and do it once a week and thought the photo of Shorty at the Sydney anniversary service with the yellow "gerbera & daisy" wreath was great, I am impressed as I've never seen a wreath like it before.

I am in charge of the wreaths/flowers here in Cummins for ANZAC, Long Tan & Remembrance Days and try to do something a bit different too.

Attached is this year's RD wreath - I used a standard "artificial" round poppy wreath and tied it inside a cane wreath which I then decorated with gum leaves (two varieties), yellow flowering gum and local "wild" Callistemon (bottlebrush) from our property.

Regards to all,
take care,
Meg Haensel-Fuss
Thanks Meg, the wreath looks great.


RANCBA Xmas Luncheon Cruise

Gday Shorty,

I have made a booking for Tue 13th December for the Xmas get together.

Same as last year $55 for lunch and drinks, lunch cruise is 2 hours followed by 2 hour sightseeing cruise so guests can remain onboard for the 4 hours if they so desire.

To book and pay It will be the same procedure as before phone 8296 7296 quote Order Number : 443708

Brian Gray

Enjoy your cruise -13th December 2016 - XMAS AS Cruise

Departure Location

King Street Wharf 5, Darling Harbour

Boarding: 12:00PM Departure Time: 12:15PM Return Time: 02:00PM

Cruise Inclusions

2-hour Sydney Harbour Lunch cruise + Option to extend for 2 hours
Reserved table with restaurant-style seating aboard the Magistic
A great alternative to lunch at a waterfront restaurant
Luxury climate-controlled catamaran with modern amenities
Amazing view of Sydney Opera House & Harbour Bridge
Freshly prepared deluxe buffet lunch
Well-stocked bar with the finest beverages
Spectacular photo opportunities from outer decks
Informative GPS-based commentary


Should you be coming on this Sydney Harbour Cruise, could you also let me know so I can coordinate with Brian and keep a list of the names etc.

For those that came last year, it was indeed a great day/afternoon on one of the world's best harbours. So if you wish, come along, RANCBA Members, partners, boy friends, girl friends are more than welcome. Don't take too long to think about it .

Same as last year $55 for lunch and drinks, lunch cruise is 2 hours followed by 2 hour sightseeing cruise so guests can remain onboard for the 4 hours if they so desire.

It was a great 4 hours last time.

Note: To book and pay It will be the same procedure as before phone 8296 7296 quote Order Number : 443708

Don't forget to let me know also names who will be joining us on this day.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW


Vietnam 'Veterans Remembered' Silver Coloured Men's Watch.


I received the following message and just maybe someone who resides in the Newcastle area may know some one who has lost a Vets Watch.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt
President RANCBA NSW

On 21 October 2016 I seized a watch in Newcastle, NSW that I believe to be stolen and I am trying to re-unite it with its rightful owner.

It is a limited edition 'Veterans Remembered' silver coloured men's watch from the Brandford Exchange company. It was a watch crafted to commemorate Vietnam vets and there was only a limited number of the watches made.

The watch I have is still in its case and has an accompanying certificate of authenticity. I have combed through the NSW Police computer system, State-wide pawnshop systems, I have been in contact with the manufacturer and have even tried Facebook but I haven't had any success.

If your members have any information, they can contact me directly via email or telephone.

On a personal note I would like to acknowledge and thank each and every one of your members for their Service to our nation.


Senior Constable
Special Operations Group
Newcastle City Local Area Command NSW Police Force
ph: (02) 4926 6592
People going in harms way take care.


On this day, 75 years ago, the 19th November 1941, HMAS SYDNEY II encountered the German Raider KORMORAN off the West Coast of Australia.  In the ensuring action, both ships were lost, and sadly the entire SYDNEY's crew of 645 Officers and Men.

The Service to Commemorate this loss was held at the Cenotaph, Martin Place today (Saturday 19 November).  The MC, Mr Maurice Green APM. and music by the full RAN Band.   He Welcomed The Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP, Deputy Leader of the Federal Opposition and Member for the seat of SYDNEY, who gave a very good speech which was well received.

Then on completion, the MC welcomed Commodore Paul Kable AM RAN Rtd, who had been Commanding Officer of the Commissioning in January 1983 of HMAS SYDNEY IV.  Commodore Kable spoke of one of the greatest sights that anyone who has been to sea , is when a ship passes through the Heads of Sydney and enters one of the most beautiful harbours in the world, but sadly for HMAS SYDNEY II when she sailed , on this fatal voyage , she and all her crew were never to return to see this harbour again.

Prayers were given by Chaplain Bob Durbin – Association Chaplain, and many may have known Bob during his time in the RAN, and was a Ex Warrant Officer and is now the Chaplain at the RSL Retirement Village in Narrabeen.

This was followed by the Wreath Laying Service – there were many, so this will be a rather smaller list.  Colonel Michael Miller Official Secretary to the Governor of NSW, The Hon. David Hurley. The Hon Natasha Maclaren –Jones MLC Representing the Premier of NSW. The Hon Greg Donnelly MLC Representing the Leader of the NSW Opposition. Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer CSC and Bar Commander of the Australian Fleet and Representing the Chief of Navy. The Hon Tanya Plibersek MP Deputy Leader of the Federal Opposition, Ms Anne Lewis Representing the Deputy Commissioner for DVA in the ACT/NSW, LieutCommander Barry Purkiss RAN Representing the Commander of HMAS KUTTABUL. Mr. John Haines AM President of the RSL NSW.

There was many more , Naval Association, War Widows, TPI Association, RAAF No 9 Squadron, Australian National Maritime Museum and I had the privilege and honour to Lay a Wreath.

Also then any Relative/ or Descendant or Member of the Public who wish to Lay a Wreath to come forward.

The Naval Ode & The Ode was Recited by Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer CSC and BAR , Commander of the Australian Fleet.

A Bugler from the full RAN Band – Sydney Detachment played the LAST POST.
One Minutes Silence.

The Naval Hymn was sung by L/Seaman Tracey Kennedy and she is without a doubt a pleasure to listen to.  The Blessing and Benediction was given by Chaplain Bob Durbin.  Then the singing of the Australian National Anthem , by L/Seaman Tracey Kennedy and here people came to a stop whilst walking through Martin Place.

On completion, all asked to remain standing for the departure of the Official Party and Guests.

Lest We Forget.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

                                         Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt with wreath.

Review of Services Available to Veterans.

From: Russ Crane

Subject: Review of the services available to veterans and members of the Australian Defence Force in relation to the prevention of self-harm and suicide.

Importance: High


Seeking your support for a very important cause.

You may recall that earlier this year on 11 August 2016, the Prime Minister, the Minister for Health and Aged Care and the Minister for Veteran's Affairs announced a review of the services available to veterans and members of the Australian Defence Force in relation to the prevention of self-harm and suicide. The Government has asked the National Mental Health Commission to conduct the Review. In my capacity as Chair of the PM's Advisory Council on Veterans Mental Health I was asked and I agreed to be a member of a reference group consisting of current and former members of the ADF. The Reference Group is available to the Commission for advice during the review.

The Commission has requested support in motivating those in the retired community to participate in the on-line survey which has been developed. This is an important piece of work which I know we all want to see succeed. From this work new proposals may well come forward to assist with policy formulation and resourcing in supporting those of our serving and retired community in need of additional care. I commend the online survey to you and ask that you forward this to your various networks such that we get an appropriate response. The survey is open to all personnel including friends and families. They also have a large part to play in this work. The survey which closes on 22 November is available at:

Thanks in anticipation
Russ Crane

CERBERUS Divisions Invitation Update for 25th November.

The final information is attached for divisions at HMAS CERBERUS on the 25th November.

Everybody should be in place at the parade ground by 0930 for commencement of Divisions at 10am. I need car registrations and the names in each car no later than overnight on 22nd of November. My number is 0418 524 067 or email

Should you have any queries or to supply the above information
John White

Follow this link for more information.


Bravo Zulu Canberra

Would you kindly put a thank you on the web to all our members, wives and partners and interstate visitors, for their attendance at a wonderfully successful and pleasurable reunion, in particular “Taffy” Eynon, the Committee and especially the Ladies for their magnificent effort and support in assisting and preparing the “goodies” for purchase.

Artie Wyatt

From Dave Jeffrey:
As someone who came very late into the organisation of the Canberra Reunion and had little to do with the final product, I can only back up Artie's words. A much smaller scale from 14 years previous, but a brilliant reunion nonetheless. I want to heap praise on all who attended, because they made it the most social reunion Maureen & I have experienced. I think the Finale Dinner was a credit to the committee and also the Hellenic Club as a venue. The food was great, the room was great, the people were great and I believe that "One of Our Sons" - Vice Admiral Ray Griggs - killed it with a very memorable off the cuff speech.

For all those who couldn't make it - you missed another great reunion and we are looking forward to Regional Victoria for the next National Getogether.

Bravo Zulu all involved
Dave Jeffrey

From John Curbishley:

I would like to endorse what Artie and Dave have said above. It was a great reunion - big enough to make full use of venues and and small enough for members to easily get around at each function to say hello to old friends and shipmates. The use of the Hellenic Club as a central point was brilliant, we were really made to feel at home. Sarah and I kept running in to old friends at different functions and it was a real pleasure to renew acquaintances over the four days. Well done everyone concerned!

From Bruce Spender:
Great to catch up with you and Sarah again at the reunion. I would like to echo the remarks of the previous commentators, The National RANCBA Reunion was an outstanding success. The organisation was a credit to the Convention Committee. I believe everything went off without a hitch (apart from one minor transport problem) and all the respective functions were most enjoyable. Bravo Zulu to all concerned. Great to catch up with old shipmates and to make some new friends.

From Sue Hackett:
Bravo Zulu Canberra

Had a wonderful time catching up with so many of my old mates. Our Navy years were often only short ones, but the friendships have lasted over many decades. Speaks for itself, doesn't it, how strong those early friendships were. A great, well organised and thoroughly enjoyable National reunion.

Looking forward to the next one.


Vale Frederick Ian Mcleod-Dryden R95147 (ORDCO)

Unfortunately this is not good news.

Received the very sad news last night (6 November) that our Founding President of the HMAS Sydney and VLSVA passed away suddenly at 68 . He will be missed by so many of us who joined with Fred in the long, long fight for recognition of our service in the Vietnam War. Fred travelled to Vietnam three times on board HMAS Sydney.

Rest in Peace Fred

Mike Prowse
Lest We Forget.
Fred was categorised as an ORD(CO) while at LEEUWIN, but underwent a change of category to ORDSA shortly after leaving Leeuwin.  He was subsequently rated SAV.


CMDR Ian Fraser RAN Rtd

Hi Shorty,

I am trying to track down news on Ian Fraser. His last job in the RAN was in mind-80s, when he was Controller NAVCAMSAUS and I was OIC NAVCOMMSTA Canberra. He retired to Lemon Tree Passage in Port Stephens.

I called in to see him a few times after he left, but have lost touch. I am not sure if he ever did join the RANCBA, or if he is still alive for that matter as cannot find any contact details for him. But am hoping that perhaps one of your members may know something about him.

If he has CTB, would be interested to know when this happened. Any info you could give me would much appreciated.

Gary Kingdon


On the evening, 10th November, the Premier of NSW, The Hon. Mike Baird hosted a ANZAC Reception at the Cutaway, Barangaroo, Hickson Road, Millers Point.

I received an Invite and accompanied by my wife, Helen we attended and we were joined by Ms Liz Watts, Secretary of the Ex WRANS and also at times by Mrs Rosemary Stockley OAM, President Ex WRANS Assn and her husband Lee.

It was hard to judge the numbers but at a rough guess, between 900-1,000 with many young ex Service people, both male and female. They came from all Wars/Conflicts, WWII, Malaya, Borneo, Vietnam, The Gulf, Iraq, Afghansitan and other Peace Keeping Operations.

Speeches were kept to a very bare minimum , with the MC Lieut General Ken Gillespie, who announced the arrival of the Premier of NSW and the Governor of NSW, HE, General David Hurley AC DSC Rtd accompanied by his wife Linda. Music was supplied by a group from the RAN, and definitely not Marching or Ceremonial.
It was a evening for drinking with mates and partaking of a great variety of small food bits.
A good evening.


On 11th November 2016 a big Service to Remember was held at the Cenotaph, Martin Place commencing at 10.30am. Here once again I received an Invite from the Premiers Dept and was joined by Ms Liz Watts.  The MC was Lieut- Colonel John Moore OAM RFD Rtd, with the Catafalque Party from HMAS KUTTABUl and the Band of the Royal Australian Navy.

All were asked to Stand for the mounting of the Catafalque Party and the Flag Orderlies from HMAS KUTTABUL and then the arrival of the Official Guests which included HE David Hurley AC DSC Rtd , Governor of New South Wales and his wife Linda. All were asked to remain standing for the Vice Regal Salute.

This was followed by the Poem 'In Flanders Field' Recited by Mr. Nikita Papastamatis & Ms Amber Frost , 2016 Premiers ANZAC Memorial Scholars.  On completion, the Laying of Wreaths took place. The Governor of NSW, The Premier of NSW, a Representative of the Prime Minister of Australia, The President of the RSL NSW, War Widows Guild, The Leader of the NSW Opposition, Representative of the Federal Opposition, The Lord Mayor of Sydney, 3 very Senior Officers of the Defence Forces, Commissioners of the NSW Police, State Emergency Service, Ambulance and Fire and Rescue. Consular Corps and this also included the French Military Attache, wearing the traditional kepi as worn by the French Foreign Legion. Representatives of ex Service Associations, SAS, Red Berets , and many many more.

The ODE was Recited by the President of the NSW RSL – Mr John Haines AM.

The Last Post was played by the Bugler of the RAN, and then with good timing, A Minutes Silence was held which coincided with the Striking of the Clock in Martin Place for 11.ooam – very well done and then Rouse.

Reflections was given by Air Vice Marshal Bob Treloar AO Rtd - NSW Centenary of ANZAC Ambassador – He had flown in Malaya then Vietnam and other areas of Conflict.

The Hymn 'I Vow To Thee My Country' by the Sydney Male Choir but all were asked to join in the singing
Followed by Prayer by Chaplain Andrew Lewis RAN. On completion, the Australian National Anthem by the Choir and also L/Seaman Tracey Kennedy RAN but all were invited to join in the singing.  The Catafalque Party dismounted the Cenotaph and the Governor of NSW received the Vice Regal Salute.  All stood whilst the Royal Australian Navy Band Marched off.

This brought to an end of a very good Service, and Martin Place was completely packed.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

Movember Mob Brisbane

L to R, Don Ruwoldt, Kev Ruwoldt, Bob Simpson, Trev Percival, Bas Cleary, Tackers Miles, Jim Anderson, Jim Eagles, Gus Dodds, Shorty Turner and John Horton.
Regards, Kev

"God only made a few perfect heads. On the rest he put hair"

Jim Anderson
Innisfail FNQ


102nd Anniversary Commemorate Memorial Service

This Service was held at Bradley's Head, Sydney Harbour at the base of the original mast of SYDNEY.  Sydney Harbour is indeed a beautiful place to hold such a Service, but unfortunately the winds that have caused havoc and disastrous bushfires the previous day arrived, but not as fierce as before.

The Service commenced at 11.00am with the Secretary of the SYDNEY Association, Mr Brian Yeo carrying out the duty of MC.

All were asked to stand for the arrival of the Official Guests which included, Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer CSC and Bar , Commander of the Australian Fleet, and Representing the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett AO CSC RAN. The Honourable, Professor Marie Bashir AD CVO – former Governor of NSW, Mr Adrian Drake and Ms Norma Drew, grandchildren of AB Reginald Sharpe 800, who had served on HMAS SYDNEY I between 1913 and 9th November 1914. Mr. James Glossop, son of Captain John Glossop RN , Commanding Officer HMAS SYDNEY I – 1913 – 1917.
The Welcome was given Professor Dame Marie Bashir and then the Battle Hymn given by Chaplain Colin Tett  RAN.

On completion, the Address was given by Mr Adrian Drake who gave a very good insight of his grandfather who had enlisted as a Boy Seaman Class II in England and through his life when he joined the very young Royal Australian Navy.

The Parade of Memorial Flags in Memory of the 4 sailors killed while serving their country during the Battle with SMS EMDEN on 9 November 1914.

Wreath Laying Service then took place with the Co Patron of the SYDNEY Association , Rear Admiral Andrew Robertson AO DSC RAN Rtd and Dame Marie Bashir AD CVO on behalf of the Association. Mr AdrIan Drake and Ms. Norma Drew on behalf of their family, followed by Wreaths by other family members who had served on HMAS SYDNEY I.

The Naval Ode & Ode was Recited by Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer CSC and Bar RAN.

A member of the RAN Band (Sydney Detachment) played the Last Post , a Minutes Silence and then Reveille. The Naval Hymn - Eternal Father – strong to save was sung by all and then the Blessing by Chaplain Colin Tett RAN, followed by the Australian National Anthem by all.

Here at this Service to which I was invited I was accompanied by my wife Helen and also in attendance was Ms Liz Watts, Secretary of Ex WRANS and NSW RANCBA Committee.

A good Service and a credit to all.

Allan Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

                                      RADM Stuart Mayer CSC and Bar

Vale Glyn William Tomlinson R95477 (ex ABRO)

I would be most grateful if you could place a message on QSO advising that Glyn Tomlinson, R95477, ABRO crossed the bar today. Tommo had been suffering from cancer and was in palliative care for the last few weeks. I will pass on funeral arrangement once known.

Leigh Treleaven (ex LRO(S) - R95480)
Sad news, may Glyn Rest In Peace.
Lest We Forget.

Funeral service will be held at Great Southern Memorial Park, 1774-1794 Mount Cotton Rd, Carbrook, QLD, Australia on Thursday, 10th November 2016 at 2:00pm. Additional details can be found by clicking on the following link.

Many Thanks,

From the Archives:
Glyn William Tomlinson R95477, DOB 10/01/50.  Joined RAN 3/4/66.  Postings - Leeuwin 66-67, Harman 67, Melbourne 67-68, Cerberus 68, Stalwart 69, Cerberus 1970.
JR2 - 3.4.66
JR1 - 30.9.66
ORDCO - 31.3.67
RO2 - 6.9.67
RO - 19.8.68



Today, Thursday 3rd November , accompanied by the MS Liz Watts, Secretary Ex WRANS NSW & RANCBA Committee NSW we attended the KTMW Service which commenced at 10.30am with the MC Mr, John Gatfield The Catafalque Party under WO1 Barry Tully, RSM of the 4th/3rd Battalion, Royal NSW Regiment took Post and Mounted the Guard at the Memorial – all shown on a big screen. All were asked to stand for the arrival of the Official Party.

The MC then invited Mr John Haines AM, Chairman of the KTMW and State President of the NSW RSL to the the stand, where he made the Official Welcome. Once again he showed why as to why he was voted to the Office of State President – he is indeed a good spokesperson

The Opening Prayer was given by The Rev. Paul Weaver – Anglican Chaplain to Concord Repatriation General Hospital, and then this was followed by the singing of a Mr Kent Maddock of the Hymn Jerusalem.

On completion, the Guest Speaker was invited to give the Kokoda Day Address. This was carried out by Professor, The Honourable Marie Bashir AD CVO , former Governor of New South Wales . Her speech was so clear and informative and well received by all in attendance.

A Visual Reflection was then shown on the big screen, and I believe by the AWM, and it commenced with the President of United States giving his speech on the occasion of the bombing of Pearl Harbour on 7th December 1941 , which he termed 'Day of Infamy' and then with the Japanese occupation of surrounding Nations and Islands to the north of Australia, and then after the loss by the Japanese at the Battle of the Coral Sea, the attack on the mainland of Papua New Guinea and Darwin.

The Flag Raising was carried out by Mr, Ray Gentles – 55/53 Battalion and Mr Michael Ali OAM, Helensburgh RSL Sub Branch.

The Wreath Laying Ceremony then followed. First by Mr. John Haines AM and Professor HE Marie Bashir, The USA & PNG Consul Representatives, Representatives from Federal. State and Local Members, Senior Officers from the Australian Defence Forces, which included Captain Paul Goble RAN Representing the Australian Fleet Commander. quite a few RSL Sub Branches and more importantly 3 Veterans from the Kokoda in WW II.

On completion, The Lords Prayer was sung by Mr Kent Maddock, and then all were asked to stand.

The Ode was Recited by Mr. Jessie James, State Councillor RSL NSW, and the Last Post was played by a member of the NSW Corrective Services Band – A Minutes Silence and then Rouse – His playing could not be faulted.

Commemorative Prayer was given by the Rev. Paul Weaver.

Brigadier Phil McNamara CSC ESM OAM was then Invited to the dais to give a Thank You all and also to the Schools that had attended.

Then the National Anthem's of Papua New Guinea and Australia were then played, and here the Australian National Anthem was sung with great pride by all

This brought to and end of a very conducted Service and all were invited to partake of refreshments. Here we had the pleasure of meeting others from different Associations

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA (NSW)

Governor Generals Divisions

RANCBA has been invited to attend Governor Generals divisions on the 25th of November 2016 commencing - time TBA. Please note all guests must be seated by time of commencement.

Captain Steve Bowater, senior naval officer Victoria has issued this invitation to all members of Rancba, which includes all states should anybody be visiting Victoria and would like to attend.

It also includes friends of the Navy and your guests. Yes friends that you might like to bring along. Dress should be neat - slacks and shirt plus jacket. Please note that full medals should be worn. It will be Captain Bowaters last divisions prior to departing Cerberus in January 2017.

Captain Bowater is the Patron of RANCBAVIC.

Access to Cerberus will be via the West gate and I will require the names of each person in the vehicle as well as registration as soon as possible.

On completion of divisions, the Governor General will officially open the new HMAS Sydney room which is close to the parade ground. He is connected to HMAS Sydney, as whilst a young Captain in the Army he was posted to the ship during Vietnam.

On completion of this opening, all guests will be invited to join the Governor General and Captain Bowater for morning tea, most likely in the covered parade ground.

There will be further information re this day as it grows nearer. This will include entry to the depot and divisions start time.

There will be an update to this information once Cerberus has firmed up all details. Please keep a lookout for this information.

Any queries, please call me john White on 0418 524 067 or email me on

John White

Greetings from the Great West !

Just a note to say THANK YOU all so much for helping me to locate/contact Genny Humby, my former cabin mate. Gen’s whereabouts had been a bit of a mystery – as she had moved to Canada some 15 years ago !

Thanks to your QSO “heads up” and responses from “Scoops” Cooper, and Sue Hackett ( nee Halpin ).

It was a great surprise to finally open my email to find a “Hello from Canada” message from Gen !

Also this lead from RANCBA crew enabled me to find “Jai” (Jenifer) Beazley, and amazingly to learn that Sue Halpin has lived approximately 2 kms from my home for 15 years or more and we didn’t know, we were almost next door to each other !!!

So – it’s all been a fabulous treat – our get togethers have been great fun, and felt like we had just seen each other yesterday, which is amazing as it has been almost 50 years since we shared our last Pims !!!!

So again THANK YOU ALL – “Scoops”, Sue, Jai and you ”JC” for passing on the original search message !

Sadly I cannot travel to ACT for the Reunion, which I know will be a resounding and brilliant smash hit.

Do have a chilled Moet for me, and those of us who are with you in spirit if not in person !


Kind regards,
Robyn L Hunt ( Jacka )

October 2016

Vale Kevin Patrick Mongan R52629 (ex LRO (S))

Dave Jeffrey has advised that Kevin crossed the bar yesterday morning (31 Oct).  He had been in ill health for some time.  Dave will advise funeral details when known.

Sad news, Lest We Forget. Our sincere condolences go to Kaye and family.  Kevin was a stalwart of the RANCBA ACT, always there when you needed him.

Funeral Details:
Kev Mongan's funeral will take place at St Thomas Acquinas Catholic Church, Charnwood, ACT, on Monday 7 November 2016 at 1430. He will be privately cremated.

From the Archives:
Kevin Patrick Mongan R52629, DOB 24.05.1934, Joined RAN 14.01.57, DEE 14.01.66.
DEE 14.01.63 at HARMAN, Re-entered 15.07.63, DEE 14.01.66 AT HARMAN.

From Shorty Moffatt OAM:
It is with very sad thoughts I read that Kevin had 'Crossed the Bar'. I served with Kevin for many years and will always remember our time at COONAWARRA – DARNAVRADSTA in 1960, the good old smokie joes at The Log or down at Howard or Berry Springs.  Kay he was indeed a great hand and will be sadly missed by all that knew or served with him.
Lest we Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM

From Trevor Lloyd Percival:
Very sorry to hear of Kev's passing as I really enjoyed his company at Harman. He used to tease me each time I headed to Sydney for a break and told me to look up Nuff Nuff while I was in Sydney. Kev will be sadly missed by his family and all of the Navy family. RIP old friend.
Trevor Percy Percival

From Ken Eynon:
Very sad days for us here in the RANCBA ACT Association. We know that Kevin had not been well for some time, Both Kevin and wife Kaye have been actively involved in the upcoming RANCBA National Reunion and on the local RANCBA ACT Committee. Kevin will be sadly missed and our thoughts are with Kaye and the extended Mongan family at this time.
Ken (Taffy) Eynon President RANCBA ACT.

From Ollie Lewis:
Very sad news to hear of the passing of Kev, I never met him in the Navy, but I had the privilege of working with him for over 20 years in Comms at the Dept Foreign Affairs and Trade. I will never forget his sharp wit and sense of humour. My deepest condolences go out to Kaye and family.
RIP Kev. Lest we forget.
Regards Ollie Lewis

From Joan Henstock:
Very sad news re the passing of Kev Mongan. Kev was the leading hand of my watch when I posted to Harman.
Condolences to Kaye and family.
Lest we Forget
Joan Henstock (aka Biscuit Reynolds)

From Artie Wyatt:
It is with sadness, that I and my fellow members of the RANCBA (ACT) committee and membership, acknowledge the passing of our shipmate and compatriot Kev Mongan, RIP old friend.
Artie Wyatt.


Vale Keith Henry Conway P29549 OAM (ex PO/TEL, SGT NDP)

Dear Allan,

I wish to inform you of the death of my father, KEITH HENRY CONWAY OAM of Erskine Road, Macleod. He passed away on October 16 just a couple of weeks ago. His funeral on October 20 included the Naval Service which would have pleased him very much.

Dad enjoyed receiving your newsletters and frequently referred to himself as a 'Communicator'. He talked with nostalgia of his time as a wireless operator in the Navy.

Frances Sullivan

Lest We Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

From the Archives:
Keith Henry Conway, DOB 27.1.1926, Joined RAN 12.3.46, Free Discharge as PO/TEL on 13.2.57, Re-entered 20.2.57 as Constable, Naval Dockyard Police. Promoted to SGT NDP on 1.9.57.  Re-engaged for 8 years from 20.2.69 to complete 20 years continuous service.  No further information available.


HMAS SYDNEY - EMDEN Memorial Service

The following has been passed on by Shorty Moffatt for the interest of members:


Good morning all Members

This is a reminder that the HMAS SYDNEY - EMDEN Memorial Service marking the 102nd Anniversary Memorial Service of the sinking of the German cruiser EMDEN off the Cocos Islands in 1914. This is a very important anniversary and will be attended by Adrian Drake and his family, from the UK. Adrian is the grandson of Petty Officer Drake one of the four sailors serving in SYDNEY to be killed that morning.

A huge amount of time and effort has gone into organising this Ceremony by your Committee and official guests will include the RAN Fleet Commander, Honorary Life Member and great supporter of the Association professor Marie Bashir, the Mayor of Mosman and many EX Service Organisations.

It is a Sunday morning and there is not many other places on Sydney Harbour to spend a couple of hours participating in the service, singing a few tunes and listening to the Navy Band perform.

It would be great to see you there supporting your Association.

Details and travel options are attached, seating will be provided.

Brian YEO

Extract from Flyer:

Honouring all who sailed in an HMA Ship SYDNEY and Escorts.

Co-Patrons Rear Admiral Andrew Robertson AO DSC RAN Ret’d & Commodore Nick Helyer MBE RANR.

HMAS SYDNEY I – SMS EMDEN ENGAGEMENT 102nd ANNIVERSARY MEMORIAL SERVICE – Bradley’s Head 11.00am Sunday 6 November 2016.

On Sunday 6 November 2016 the HMAS SYDNEY Association Inc. will hold a Memorial Service to remember the 102nd Anniversary of the engagement and subsequent sinking of the German cruiser SMS EMDEN by HMAS SYDNEY I near the Cocos and Keeling Islands. The Memorial Service will take place at Bradley’s Head Reserve commencing at 1100. Below I have detailed the transport options.

FERRY: The following ferries leaving Circular Quay (check information boards for departure wharf as this sometime changes) that will get you there on time, all will be met at the bus stop opposite the Zoo wharf by a “shuttle bus” that will take you the site.

Circular Quay Wharf Number 2 Departs at 0900 Arrives Taronga Zoo 0912
Circular Quay Wharf Number 2 Departs at 0920 Arrives Taronga Zoo 0932
Circular Quay Wharf Number 2 Departs at 0940 Arrives Taronga Zoo 0952
Circular Quay Wharf Number 2 Departs at 1000 Arrives Taronga Zoo 1020

BUSES: Plenty of them (244) from Stand A, Carrington Street (Wynyard Park) but unless you change at Mosman it is a kilometer “Stroll” to the Zoo. Recommend the ferry is the best bet.

CAR: Drive to and park in the Taronga Park Zoo car park. The “shuttle bus” will run from the RTA bus stop at the south end of the car park to the site. (you can “walk” down the hill). There will be National Park and Wildlife Service Rangers to direct you.
DISABLED: There is no parking in the park itself but if you need to “drop off” then you will have to give me details of your motor vehicle make and rego. NPWS will let you enter and then return to the Zoo car park.

Shuttle buses will also be there after the Service to take you back to the wharf or your car.

Brian Yeo, Secretary

The Secretary, HMAS SYDNEY ASSOCIATION Inc., Post Office BOX 423, GLEBE NSW 2037.
Email address: Mobile 0439414543.


Hope that I may see some Communicators there
Allan Shorty Moffatt OAM

Keghead Weaver still in Sick Bay

I thought you may like an update on Ken for the website if you think it’s appropriate. Ken is still in hospital, been there since 5th October and is not making any progress as unfortunately everything that is being done to him doesn’t work. It is very disappointing and frustrating for him and me.

Thank you to everyone who has been so kind in getting me to and from the hospital.

Today in Canberra the sun is shining and it feel like spring not the wintry windy weather we have been having.

Take care and best wishes,

Ruth Weaver
Thanks for the update Ruth, it must be very exasperating for you both, please get well soon.

Follow this link for a previous report on Keghead.

Bob Cody in Sick Bay

Some of you may know Bob - We send him our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Hi Sonia,
Bob asked me to please extend his apologies for not attending the AGM, he is at the moment recovering in St Andrews hospital Brisbane after heart surgery. He is doing well & I hope to take him home soon.

Judy Cody

Vale Barry Charles Jackson R95432

As posted on Facebook by Alan Frapper Lehman.

Hello folks. It is with great sadness that I let you all know that Barry "Jacko" Jackson, ex Navy Sparker of great repute, passed away tonight (25 October) at Hollywood Hospital in Western Australia. When I know any further details, of Funeral arrangements, I will pass them on.

Funeral Arrangements:

It is with great regret to inform our members of the passing of Jacko Jackson today 26th October 2016.
The Funeral arrangements have been organized by the North Perth Naval Association, of which Jacko was a member.

The Funeral is on 1400 Wednesday 2nd November at the Pinaroo Cemetery, it is also with regret I will not be able to attend the funeral as I fly out Monday 31st Oct for Queensland.

Norma can you please arrange the necessary requirements for the Funeral and the Newspaper Notices

Thanking You All in advance
Arthur Large

Sad news, Lest We Forget. Our best wishes and condolences go to Leeanne.  May Jacko RIP.


Vale Bob Doyle - ex CPORS

As posted on Facebook by Andy Dennis.

It is with great regret that I am posting this very sad news...Bob was a CPORS prior to joining DSO and was one of life's true gentlemen - RIP Bob.
Andy Dennis.

Lest We Forget
I could not find Bob's Record of Service card in Archives, but he may have joined after records went to EDP in 1970.  If anyone can furnish more details of Bob - DOB, Date Joined RAN, Official Number, DEE date, family or next of kin, it would be greatly appreciated.
Web Yeoman 26/10/16.

Funeral  Arrangements for the late Cranston Robert Doyle (aka Bob):
As most of you are aware, Bob passed away last week.

Bob provided 42 years invaluable and dedicated service to the Department of Defence. He joined the Navy on the 1st of April 1974 and was posted to Her Majesty's ships and establishment Cerberus, Harman, Swan, Kuttabul, Coonawarra, Lonsdale, Parramatta, Stuart, and Creswell. Bob retired from the permanent Navy on 1 April 1998 and continued as a Reservist from 2 April 1998 to 7 December 2015.

Bob's next chapter in his working life was at the Defence Spectrum Office from 14 Oct 1999 where he contributed immensely to provide the spectrum required in support of Defence trials, experiments, exercises and operations in addition to the support he provided to other government organisations.

The details of the funeral arrangements are as follows:

Date: 9 Nov 16
Time: 1030
Location: Norwood Park Crematorium, 65 Sandford St, Mitchell ACT 2911 (02) 6241 3177
Funeral Director: William Cole Funerals (POC Richard) 02 6253 3655
Wake: Old Canberra Inn (BYO food and drinks) @ 195 Mouat Street, Lyneham ACT 02 6134 6000

Hope you can make it there to celebrate Bob's life however I know some of you are much too far away to make the journey which is absolutely understandable.

Kind regards,
Merv Beergah | a/Principal Technical Officer Spectrum Management Operations | Defence Spectrum Office | Tel: 02 6144 4767

From Paul Cashman ex CPORS:
Vale - Cranston (Bob) Doyle
I was very saddened to hear the sudden passing of Bob last weekend. I served with Bob both at sea and ashore, in particular HMAS Coonawarra - DARWIN in 1980 -81. We were all young back in those days and we had some great moments. Lots of laughs together. What I will remember of Bob is - he always conducted himself as a true gentleman. He was liked by everyone who came in contact with him.
R.I.P. Bob (Cranston - as I would call him).
Paul Cashman ex CPORS


El Supremo - 50 years and still got it!

It's El Supremo, aka Charlie Rigg, young and old. Charlie is showing the young blokes how to do it at a recent open day at Sig School. You will note there is no light coming from the business end. I doubt whether it was plugged in and turned on!

Doug Marsh
Tks Doug

                                        BZ Charlie, you don't look a day older!

Vale Colin Robert Ware R93154 (ex CPORS SM)

From: Jennifer Ware
Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2016 6:24 PM

Subject: Colin Ware : Funeral Arrangements

Dear Friends & Family

Thank you for your messages of comfort for Paul, Shaun and myself, and for those of you who are able to come and celebrate Colin's life with us, details are as follows:

Friday 4 November 2016 at 10.00am: Castlebrook Memorial Park Crematorium, Garden Chapel Windsor Road, Rouse Hill.

Colin wanted no flowers please but if you would like to make a donation to the Westmead Institute for Medical Research you would be helping to make a difference:

Please then join us to give Colin (Wallaby) a true Submariner's Send Off and to help with catering (Navy Issue Hard Tack Biscuits), can you please let us know if you will be able to attend the Wake … 12 noon (sun will be over the yard-arm) until around 5pm at The Mean Fiddler, Cnr of Commercial & Windsor Road, Rouse Hill.

Look after yourselves and each other.

Love from
Jenny, Paul & Shaun
Lest We Forget


Today, Sunday 23rd October 2016 I was invited to attend and Lay a Wreath at the National MN Memorial at Wendouree Drive Kings Park Canberra. It was also to Commemorate in Honour of those Australian Merchant Navy who gave their lives for their Country in WW I & WW II and those who have 'Crossed the Bar' since the end of WW II

Mr. David Field FAICD, Chairman of the MN War Memorial Fund was MC, and all were asked to stand for The Royal Anthem, and on completion he introduced Sister Mary Leahy OAM, Chaplain and Mr John Kewa, Mission to Seafarers, Port Kembla. Once again Sister Mary with nice Irish brogue was a pleasure to listen to.

The Psalm – God is our Strength and Refuge followed and the the Reading of Matthew 8 23-27 by Mr. Stan Shardlow , MN WW II Veteran, and then the Hymn 'From Around the World'.

Sister Mary then introduced Mrs Meg Green, National President War Widows Guild of Australia who then Read the Reading Isaiah 43 1-3.

The Hymn of Her Majesty's Armed Forces – Eternal Father Strong to Save by all

Then Mr. Peter Sinclair AM CSC RAN Rtd Director Merchant Navy War Memorial Fund, who spoke and then introduced the Guest of Honour, Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett AO CSC RAN. He told how he was in the year ahead of Vice Admiral Tim Barrett during their Middies training at RANC, HMAS Creswell and their friendship that has remained

Vice Admiral Barrett gave what I would say, one of the best speeches that I have heard.

On completion, Mr Don Kennedy MN WW II Veteran and President MN RSL Sub Branch, Recited the Naval Ode and Ode. then the Last Post, A Minutes Silence and Reveille was played.

The Laying of the Wreaths was then carried out, with first 5 all asked to come forward, all Veterans of the MN, this was followed by CN Vice Admiral Barrett, and Mr Peter Sinclair. Following was very Senior Naval Officers from the UK, USA, NZ and the Consul Office of PNG. Many Naval Associations were then named to come forward when their name was called out and their Wreath was given to them by Sea Cadets I had the pleasure of being in one of the early groups.

On completion , the Hymn Amazing Grace was sung by all and the all the Australian National Anthem

This brought to close of very well organised and conducted Service and a credit to the Merchant Navy.

Refreshments were then available to all should they wish.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett AO CSC RAN addressing all at the Merchant Navy Memorial Service.


Vale David Claud Wheeler (ex WWII Tel)

Hi Allan,

Thank you for speaking with me today, please see below for the info you asked for concerning Dad.

David Claud Wheeler served the Full duration of WWII with the majority of action being seen in Papua New Guinea. A Naval communications Morse and radio operator David was inserted behind enemy lines to perform recon and report on enemy movements (mainly via signal lamp) calling in observations which were instrumental in preparing allied forces to successfully defend attempts of air raids on Australian territories and invasion of New Guinea territories. David (like many veterans) never talked much about his service finding it to traumatic, however he served with absolute pride and selflessness giving up everything to join the fight!

Born 1917 David "wimpy" Wheeler was a successful vaudeville entertainer prior to his service however injuries sustained during action prevented him from resuming his career after 1945. David passed away 6 months short of reaching 100 and he lived at home with his loving wife and primary carer Hassiba before he passed away in palliative care as a result of a fall some weeks earlier. He passed peacefully with a smile on his face always surrounded by his extended family, his wife Hassiba (73) and his two children Paul (38) and Eve Wheeler (40) and grandson Billy (7 months).

Many thanks in advance
Paul Wheeler

I always remember Dave at the NSW ANZAC Day March, regardless of the weather, he would be there in a wheelchair and along with another stalwart, ArthurTugboat Shiplee, would on the left & right hand side of the front line of the RANCBA Contingent. It would be hard to judge the number of times he had his photo taken by both the Media and the Public.
RIP Dave – you were a great hand.

Allan Shorty Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW


Vale Ronald James 'Nullarbor' Baker R58946 (ex-CPORS)

Bob & Karen Vonarx have advised that Nullarbor crossed the bar yesterday.  More detail will be published as it comes to hand.

May he rest in peace.
Very sad news.  Our thoughts and best wishes go to Ron's family.
Lest We Forget

As posted on Facebook:

Jamie Wilson Baker

It is with a very heavy heart that I am writing this. Our father, Ronald James Baker,  AKA "Nullarbor" passed away tonight 17/10/2016 at 19:00 Qld time. It was wonderful that all the immediate family were with him when it happened. He is at peace now.  He had a great life. He loved his Family, including his extended Navy Family. R.I.P Pops. We love you. Tiffany Baker-Schaefer, Ron Baker, Felicity Baker-Schaefer, Kimberley Baker-Schaefer, Sam Duke, Penny Baker.

From Dave Jeffrey:
This is very sad news indeed. We passed messages for his birthday less than a fortnight ago. Nullarbor & I shared a first sea posting together in HMAS Sydney. To say a run ashore was NEVER boring is an understatement. I was there watching him throw the Bosun's Mate off Anzac into the harbour one night with the Docky Coppers chasing him!!!!  He received 60 days @ Holdsworthy for that one. We had many other exciting runs ashore, including one to his home in Cabramatta. He took me down to the Stardust Hotel to meet his pre navy mates. A tough crowd!!!
He will be missed. He was larger than life and fought a great battle against the dreaded C. Smooth seas old mate

Thanks for the photo Dave, circa 1963.  Who'd have believed Nullarbor was this young!

From RADM Tony Horton AO RAN Rtd:
Thank you for the very sad news that Nullarbor has "crossed the bar. Over the years, I saw him, and communicated with him, quite a lot. When Chief of Navy Personnel, Nullarbor was my right hand man at various times. He was onboard MELBOURNE when we collided with FRANK E EVANS in 1969. Seen at various MELBOURNE/EVANS reunions, and very much instrumental in organisation, last seen at the 45th year reunion in 2014, when apart from the formalities of the occasion, he dined with Margaret and self. He was held in very high regard by the hierarchy and members of the USS FRANK E EVANS Association.

From Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt:
Ron Baker but as most knew him, Nullarbor. He was a great hand during our era, nothing seemed to worry him, and lived life to the full.  Sadly he has now left us, but will be missed by all that served/knew him.  'ave a good stand down now mate.

From Harry Firth:
Very sad on the passing of Nullarbor. Knew him too and as u all said great bloke.. Good hand
RIP mate.

From Ken Swain:
I knew "Nullarbor" as most did. Very good hand and a pleasure to be with at "ALL times' Both the good and the bad. He will be missed among us Communications. Obviously gone to man the great B40 in the Sky with his morse key right beside him.

From Trevor Pike:
RIP Nulla, he will be sorely missed by all that knew him especially the members of the USS Frank E Evans Assn. A good hand and a good bloke to have on your side.

From Dave Dixon:
I know this is a little late, but I just wanted to say how sorry I am to hear of Nullarbor's passing on the 17th of October. He was a 'larger than life' character, and I have many wonderful memories of 'all day darts' in the Tourist Hotel (Queanbeyan). I once dated his sister, and was told in no uncertain terms to 'behave myself or else', and as we all know, if Nulla told you to behave yourself, you did, or suffered the consequences !!!
Again, my condolences to his family and friends.
Gone, but never forgotten.
Dave Dixon


Dedication of Memorial Plaques & Federation of Naval Ships Association Service

This combined was held today in the Chapel of Remembrance, Garden Island on Sunday, 16th October 2016 commencing at 1000am with approximately 90 in attendance.

All were asked to stand as the Australian White Ensign was paraded into the Chapel and the PO, who was the Flag bearer presented the AWE to the Chaplain and it was then draped over the alter.

All were then asked to be seated and then Chaplain Colin Tett RAN, who was conducting the Service made a welcome to all , and also with the Opening Prayer, this was followed by the Lord's Prayer – said by all Following was the beautiful singing on L/Seaman Tracey Kennedy, accompanied by some of the RAN Band – Sydney Detachment and she sang 'The Lord is My Shepherd', without a doubt, she would have to be one of the most accomplished singers one could listen .

The Reading of Psalm 107 23-32 was given by Ms Liz Watts, Ex LWRRO, Vice President of the FNSA, Secretary of the WRANS NSW, and RANCBA Committee person. Actually she was only given about 10 minutes notice of this, but she did not falter.   The Lesson (Romans 15 5-7) was Read by Ken Swain AM, Vice President RANCBA NSW, and Secretary of the Battle of the Java & Coral Sea Committee .

Then all asked to stand and the singing of the Naval Hymn. Following was Family Reflections and this is where, family, friends or former ship mates come forward and speak on behalf of those deceased RAN personnel having a Plaque Dedicated in the Chapel for all time.

A Prayer of Commemoration was then carried out by Chaplain Tett and then the Reading of the Names
L/Seaman Cameron Acreman 27 years – Signalman Donald Aldred 91 years, LCDR Ronald Bagley VRD 99 years – AB Thomas Burns 90 years –  PO Stoker Douglas Childerstone 78 years – Stores Asst. Stanley Doyle 88 years – CPO Lindsay Kidd 51 years – Commodore Kenneth Taylor AM RFD 70 years – AB AB Joseph Wilson 88 years – CPO QMG William Youngs 90 years.

All were asked to Stand and the Naval Ode and Ode was Recited by Allan Moffatt OAM – this was followed by the Last Post – A Minute Silence - Reveille . The Bugler of the RAN Band could not be faulted.

A Prayer for our Navy, by Chaplain Tett and then Benediction.

This was followed by the AWE Parade Party slow marching down the Aisle and the AWE was then presented back to the Petty Officer Flag bearer and slow marched past all.  Following was then the Australian National Anthem which was sung by all – and with great pride.

All were then invited to the Navy Historical Bldg where morning tea is provide by some great volunteers, Ray & Sharon Mundy RANCBA, Philip & Mary Bell FNSA, Ric & Jan Easom RANCBA, Liz Watts FNSA/RANCA/WRANS, Ken Swain FNSA/RANCBA, Helen Moffatt RANCBA – here they really show their MKR skills I cannot cook so I keep out of this!!!

Others in attendance, RADM Tony Horton AO RAN Rtd, Patron of the RANCBA NSW, and accompanied by his wife Margaret. John Short RANCBA, John Brynes President SYDNEY Association and Bill Ross President HOBART Association who willingly assisted in setting up and mingling with the attendees.

This is a very unique Service and the number of times , people when speaking at the Reflections, could not thank the Navy enough for this Service and the support they have been given.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President FNSA & RANCBA NSW Chapter

Vale Carol Inall

Just letting those who knew my wife Carolyn (Carol) that she passed away peacefully on Wednesday evening after a four year battle with Sjorgens Disease (immune system problem).

Funeral is being held at Pinegrove Crematorium, Minchinbury, West Chapel, at 10.30am on Tuesday 18 October 2016.

Gympie Inall
Sad news Gympie, our thoughts are with you and your family.


HMAS Hobart Round the World Cruise

I wonder if you might add the attached Newspaper article onto 'QSO the World'.

This is the best way that I know of, to get the info to all those Communicators on board during that particular trip.

Cheers matey, see you next month.



VALE – Michael Darby R62096 ex ROS(S) DOB 19-9-42

I have received the following sad news from his wife Rosie and many may have known him. He joined in early 1963 and served on HMAS SYDNEY, VENDETTA , HOBART and appears there was another ship. On completion of full time Service, he served in the Naval Reserve for many years.

Michael Darby, Radio Operator (Special ) died at 74 years of age on 19th September, 2016 after suffering from metastases from the original - prostate cancer and sadly this attacked his bones and then he had difficulty breathing due to lung cancer and was admitted to Caboolture Private Hospital where he passed away and I am most grateful to Doctors and Staff for this sympathy and care.

He is now in a better place.

Rosie Darby

Lest We Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW


1. Herewith another quick update to supply some further information that could be of Interest to anybody interested in joining the group departing from Sydney on 21st Aug 2017 for 12 days. I have also supplied the names of those booked below.

2. On the 17th of October all Helloworld travel agents, which includes our agent Helloworld Rowville, will be running a cruise week special for 1 week. This special is different to our cruise company specials which come from the cruise line direct to Helloworld Rowville for our group. These remaining specials will be advised when they are due. But nobody knows what this special involves until day of release on The 17th. This is to advise anybody that may be interested this cruise to call Kath or Karen at Helloworld Rowville on 03 9764 8487 from the Monday to obtain the benefits And whether or not to wait until our 3rd cruise special - the girls will be able to advise anybody interested.

3. Kath and John Williams and Myself will be visiting our ship in Melbourne whilst here for the Melbourne cup. I have some questions for them and also will be doing a tour for further information. I shall post plenty of photos in the following few days along with further information. For any further queries please call me on 0418 524 067 or Kath on 03 9764 8487.


John & Rachel White
Roy & Lyn Barber
John & Margaret Barwood
Michael Palmer & Karen Howard
Rick & Jan Easom
Ray & Sharon Mundy
Peter & Michael Mundy
John & Kath Williams
Stan & Bev Bee
Frank & Lorainne Lawton
Bruce & Margaret Maher
David & Violet Kelleher
Andrew & Janet Mills
Don Parsons & Geoff Hickling
William & Carol McClean
Rodger & Lysbeth Stuart
Sue & Andrea Thompson
Thomas & Ann Eastcott
John & Caroline Finlay
Robin & Colwynn Tapp

John Nokka White


Will be conducted at the Queensland Maritime Museum, South Bank on Saturday 29th October 2016
11.30 for 12 noon.

Good Food and drinks and great company. $25 pp. Must register as this is a catered event.

For further information, call Sonja or Alan on 07 3397 2663 or

Many thanks

Commemoration to mark the Vietnam Conflict

I received an Invite to attend this Service which would be held at the ANZAC Memorial Hyde Park, Sydney on Thursday, 24th September 2016 . To put it mild, I was having second thoughts about attending due to the weather, but on arrival there was a brief rain down pour and it cleared to a nice day, though overcast.

The MC was Mr. Darren Mitchell, who first off welcomed all, and then advised that the Guest of Honour, HE The Governor-General of Australia, Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC Rtd and accompanied with his wife, would now not be attending, as they had to leave Australia urgently and attend and represent Australia at the Funeral of Mr. Simon Peres, former President and then Prime Minister of Israel the following day and Lieutenant – General Campbell would be his Representative. Also he advised that the National Flags flown at half mast was in Honour of all Police as this was National Police Remembrance Day.

The Official Welcome was given by Mrs Meg Green, who is now the National President, War Widows Guild, and then following was the recital the Table of Remembrance by the RSL Rural Commemorative Youth Choir. These young children from across NSW country are a credit and should you have the chance, stop and listen to them.

The Hymn Requiem for a Soldier was sung by Soloist Mrs. Alexandra Dalman, Military Wives Choir and accompanied by the full Band of the RAN –Sydney Detachment .

A Prayer was then given by the Reverend John Tinkler who served with 1st Australian Task Force Vietnam 1967 – 68, and he was without a rather different Clergy that I have heard or known, and you didn't know what he would come out with next!!

Following was the Poem The Long Tan Cross , recited by two young school children in school uniform, Miss Alexandra & Annabelle Green.

Then the Hymn Nearer My God to Thee by the Soloist Mrs Alexandra Dalman and once again accompanied by the full RAN Band.

The Commemorative Address , was given by Lieut-General Campbell, representing the Governor-General.

A big Wreath Laying Ceremony followed and there were many, the National War Widows President Mrs Meg Green, Lieut-General Campbell, both Federal and State Members and also from Local Government Members, 3 Senior Officers of the Australian Defence Force, DVA Representatives , Ex Service Organisations and RSL’s to name just a few.

The ODE was Recited by Mr John Haines AM, who at that time was the Acting State President of the RSL – later on that day he was elected as State President RSL NSW.  The Last Post was played by AB Phillip O'Neill Bugler with the RAN Band – a Minutes Silence was Observed and following Rouse by AB O'Neill.

Closing remarks were given by Mrs Narelle Bromhead OAM, National President, the Partners of Veterans’ Association of Australia.

This was then followed by Benediction by the Rev John Tinkler and the singing of the Australian National Anthem by Soloist Mrs Alexandra Dalman and the RAN Band.

This brought to close of a very well and conducted Service , especially with the bad weather that had been forecast, so full credit to all concerned. Light refreshments were then available to all .

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW Chapter


Following received – keep in mind

Allan 'Shorty Moffatt' OAM
President RANCBA NSW Chapter
HMAS SNIPE 1965 - 66

Subject: Indonesian Confrontation War Memorial

Selamat petang Ladies and Gentlemen,

As many know, 11 August this year marked the 50th Anniversary of the Cease Fire and Declaration of the End of the Indonesian Confrontation with Malaysia. The commemoration of this anniversary was conducted in Kuching and the Bau District of Sarawak. The overwhelming success of the tour is a lasting tribute to our Sarawak colleagues, the former Malaysian armed forces members, the people of Sarawak, the officers and members of the Australian Air Force Cadets and the Australian veterans who were able to join the tour.

The Memorial tablet and site are the second only of it's type to be permitted in Sarawak. The other is to the Australian SAS members.

The annual Malaya & Borneo Veterans' Day commemoration has been conducted in Adelaide in the City of West Torrens War Memorial Gardens for the last 5 years. The City of West Torrens has provided the necessary logistics to make each occaision a great success......and makes a substantial donation towards the makan and beverages for the After the Service dining.

I have been advised that the City of West Torrens has voted to underwrite the construction of a Memorial to the Australian Armed Forces members who Died on Operational Service during the Indonesian Confrontation. The memorial will be sited in the garden area adjacent to the Cross of Sacrifice and the similar Memorials for other conflicts including WW1, WW2, Korea, Greek servicemen, and National Service veterans.

The unveiling date and other details are yet to be discussed, however, a date of significance that is suitable and not that far off may a few days prior to ANZAC Day, 2017. The memorial will consist of a large granite block with a bronze plaque detailing specific dates and information relevant to the Confrontation. Tillett's Memorials will be the supplier.

Keep your diary open please....terima kasih.

Brian Selby

Navy Week Victoria

All RANCBAVIC members and their families are reminded that during Navy week HMAS Cerberus will be open to visitors on Sunday 23rd of October from 10 am to 4 pm - Entry will be via the West gate only.

LCDR Hoctor the OIC of the Communications school has advised us that all ex Communicators and families are most welcome to visit the Communications school and make themselves known during the day. There is a large range of interesting activities planned for the day.

Anybody that would like further information please call me on 0418 524 067 or contact Gary Swanton on our website or ring him on 0430 339 921.

John Nokka White

V360 Australia Ltd.

V360 are proud to announce the first NATIONAL FREE CALL number for veterans, their families and friends to contact our Outreach Team and seek information or assistance for any ex-service personnel who are vulnerable, at risk or experiencing homelessness.

1800 838 360 will be manned 24/7 by our experienced operators and link callers directly with Outreach staff.


Barry Jackson in Sick Bay

Jacko has been diagnosed with cancer on and under his tongue. It is pressing on his middle ear and is causing pressure on his ear drum. He is not well enough for chemotherapy or intensive radiation. Consequently the doctors have decided on mild radiation treatment with three sets of four days and then a month off to rest. They believe they can reduce the cancer but it may return.

He is on very strong pain medication and will have to wear a mask during the radiation treatment. Please pass this on to his mates.

Thanks from Leeanne Jackson
Mobile - 0409 902 244
email -
Address - 9 Kingsdene Mews, Landsdale WA 6065.

September 2016 Entries

RANCBA National Reunion - Final Day for Registrations

Just a reminder that registrations for the RANCBA National Reunion (to be held in Canberra in November) will close at 1700 today 30th Sep.

We will not be able to extend this date further as we now need to firm up our bookings.

To register follow the prompts on the Home Page, or follow this link:


Keghead Weaver in Sick Bay

Have just spent last 4/5 days in Calvary Hospital where I have been ‘treated’ for long term serious health problems.

It is with regret that I will be tendering my resignation as President of the RANCBA ACT Chapter forthwith. I am also foregoing my duties as Chairman of the RANCBA REUNION 2016.

I have enjoyed my time as President of this association and would like to thank everyone for their assistance during my tenure.

Am very sorry to do this at such a late date before the Reunion, but I feel it would be remiss of me to leave it any longer.

Ken 'Keghead' Weaver

Thanks Keghead, we hope your health is on the improve.  Thanks also for your work as President of the RANCBA ACT and with the preparations for the National Reunion in November.  Our thoughts are with you and Ruth, get well soon!

Our thoughts are with you Keg for a full and speedy recovery.
Best regards
Jim Anderson
Innisfail FNQ

Enjoy your break Keghead and look after yourself Mate.
Fred Harper
Bribie Island

Sorry to hear that you are unwell again. My wife and I send you the best of wishes for a speedy recovery and hope that you will be able to have a couple of drinks with you friends after you leave Calvary hospital. I was looking forward to seeing you and all the people and mates I knew during my time in the navy and I would bet that you felt the same. I just got out of spending a eleven days in your lovely Canberra Hospital due to a fall at the Canberra War Memorial in August. Another Warrie. Anyway Keghead, get better soon and hope to see you again one day.
Graham Bence


PLAQUE DEDICATION – 16th October 2016

This unique Service will also include the Annual FNSA Church Service will be held on 16th October , commencing at 09.30am. There will be a total of 9 Plaques Dedicated for deceased former Members of the RAN. The Service is held regardless of Rank/Rate or Branch of the RAN . On completion, morning tea is provided to all by the FNSA & RANCBA Members who provide and give their time. Many of the family and friends attending, this is their first time to meet the 'Navy Family' as such and have had nothing but praise for what they do.

Now if attending, you are no longer allowed (unless you have a current pass) to walk or drive into GI. All vehicles are parked at the Navy – South Block Parking Station – opposite Fleet Base East and you are driven to the Chapel in a shuttle pick-up coach I shall require vehicle make and rego, driver's name and names of all passengers no later than 29th September

The Annual Service will take place at the Parramatta Naval Reserve , in George Street , Parramatta on 27th November commencing at 11.00am
On completion of the Service a Luncheon will be held at the Parramatta RSL Club but there is a cost, of $35.00 per head. All family and friends are invited . In case of inclement weather, the complete Service – including Wreath Laying will be held in the Parramatta Club. If attending, could you please advise by 4th November and also I will advise payment details for the Luncheon if you are attending that part.


After an absence of 2 years, the Annual FNSA Luncheon will be held this at the superb Pinaroo Room of the Grace Hotel , Level 1, York Street, Sydney. commencing at 12.00. The Guest Speaker will be Rear Admiral Guy Griffiths AO DSC DSO RAN Rtd,. Also this year as we will not be in NSW Parliament House as in previous years, there will be a Raffle of 3 prizes. There is a non refundable payment and full payment of $75.00 by the 17th November . Included in this is Pre – Luncheon drinks and table wines included.

Town Hall and Wynyard Railway Stations are just a short walk away and nearby parking for vehicles at the Wilson's Parking Station. So come along and have a relaxing time catching up with old shipmates (this is not only for RANCBA, but includes SYDNEY, VAMPIRE, HOBART, WRANS, MERCHANT NAVY, FAA etc) . You are welcome to organise a table of 10 with your Guests.

In all cases, dress is as for ANZAC Day – Please try to attend and give support to all the above functions. 

Any further details required, contact me direct on

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW Chapter



1. There has been discussions over the past 12 months by RANCBAVIC Committee of the viability of RANCBAVIC changing to RANCBA SOUTHERN REGION. After discussions with a few people from South Australia and Tasmania, the Vic committee has decided to ask ex communicators from both states and Victoria, plus all RANCBAVIC members for their thoughts on this option. Other States are most welcome to comment.

2. We are of the opinion that our Victorian members and others would happily travel to SA and Tassie for regional reunions as well as other events that may take place. Also as Vics regional reunion continues to grow there is further scope to have two per year or whatever other options may occur. Ex communicators from most states attended the latest regional reunion in Wodonga.

3. Please remember that we would just like to commence discussions regarding this option and would welcome input from ex communicators (Male or Female) from both states in particular.  Comments would be welcome on the RANCBAVIC website, the national website or contact me on 0418 524 067 or email - The more comments the better would be appreciated.

4. This communication is simply a request for as many thoughts as possible re this name change. We will act according to the comments received, positive, negative or other. Please as you have in the past - Communicate with us - Thanks.

John White
On behalf of the committee


1. On behalf of the Committee of RANCBAVIC this is a big thank you to all those that made the regional reunion in Wodonga such a huge success. The committee of RANCBAVIC, a big thank you for all your assistance. But a very special thank you to the following - All the ladies that assisted in any way especially preparing the food for the meet and greet and Sunday breakfast. But also for the way the kitchen was left after such a couple of huge clean-ups. Not an easy job for so many people. Thankyou, thankyou very much.  Also the boys that set up the wonderful room each day and then cleaned up afterwards. Also those boys that assisted with the cooking both times - BZ everybody.

2. A couple of older members were unable to attend due to accidents just prior to the event, thankfully they are both recovering well and we look forward to catching up with them at the National reunion in Canberra in November.

3. The programme ran perfectly and all of the planned events went off without without a glitch, that is once we sorted the bus driver on arrival!! It really was a faultless weekend and was made all the better with a very humorous tour of the township of Beechworth which was followed by
Ned (Parsons) Kelly being retried again for god only knows how many times, in the local courthouse. The laughter just kept flowing.

4. Both RSL venues were perfect, Beechworth with EX Sparker Brendon Honey their president for lunch on Saturday, and the Wondonga RSL with 78 of us for a beautiful 2 course dinner topped off with a group photo under the White ensign.

5. After some discussion the committee is now looking to move the timing of future reginal reunions to warmer months, possibly late March or early April. This however will not apply for times that Vietnam Vets day falls on a weekend - eg 2018 where we will have the reunion to coincide, and endeavor to join the local march.

6. Just in case I have overlooked anybody - once again a huge thankyou to all that assisted in any way on the weekend and the committee looks forward to many more such functions. Stay posted.

7. Bring on the National reunion in Canberra - I look forward to catching up with many old salts!!

Kind Regards


The 2016 RANCBA Victorian AGM meeting will held at the Bentleigh RSL which is located at 538 Centre Road Bentleigh Vic on Friday the 4th of November 2016.

Bentleigh Railway Station is conveniently located 500 metres away.

The business of the AGM will commence at 1100 hours sharp in the upstairs function room.

NOTE: Lunch and drinks will be at own expense - the menu is available on the following link.

Note: The invitation to attend is also extended to “”all”” Ex R.A.N. Communicators and/or their partners.

Regards Ian Hogarth


The RANCBA-ACT AGM is being held on Friday 7th October, 2016 at The Weston Club, Liardet St. Weston ACT.

1900 for a 1930 start. 

No need to advise me you will be attending, but you can send in your apologies if unable to make it. 

Finger food will be provided.   The club has an excellent bistro if you would like to have dinner before the meeting. 

All positions on the committee will be declared vacant, so please consider nominating for a position on the committee to keep our association alive and kicking. 

Also, please remember to wear a namebadge, any association/event badge will do. 

Please feel free to pass this email on to any prospective/lapsed members. 

Our association needs and values your membership. 

Peter Guy

The Signalman : by Darrell White

I'm an ex-RAN signalman who's turned his talking hands to art. I may have been in contact with you awhile back with prints of pencil drawings. I've moved onto paints since then, and I've just finished a very personal piece that I wanted to share with you.

This piece has been created for the Australian Society of Marine Artists 20th anniversary exhibition, and for those who find them in Sydney around mid October will be able to view the works.

Feel free to forward the artwork to any interested colleagues, and if you have any further inquiries, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards,
Darrell White
Ruth Eddington (nee Maddison)

Just wondering if I can add my name and email address to your list of ex-WRANS Communicators please? I served from 1974 to 1980, from Cerberus to DEFCOMARS, Harman, Kuttabul and Albatross.

My name is Ruth Eddington (nee Maddison) and I'm in one of your website photos I noticed - 'WRROT Course February 1975'. I currently live in Newcastle NSW. I've only just been made aware of this site although I notice it has been going for quite some time.

Thank you in anticipation of your help. Look forward to hearing from you or please contact me if you need further information.

Kind regards,

Ruth Eddington
Thanks Ruth, I have added you to the email contact list.

RANCBA VIC Regional Reunion - Wodonga

The following photo was taken at Wodonga RSL as part of the RANCBA VIC Regional Reunion that was held over the weekend 9-11Sep16.

The reunion saw about 80 people travel to Boathaven Holiday Park in Wodonga. The weekend kicked off with a Meet & Greet on Friday night where old friends caught up and spun those warries we have all heard many times.

Saturday saw the group do a historic walking tour of Yackandandah followed by a re-enactment of Ned Kelly’s committal hearing at the local court house with some members playing the roles of prosecutor, defender, judge and jury. Saturday night saw a group dinner take place at Wodonga RSL and the weekend wrapped up with the world famous breakfast on Sunday morning.

A great time was had by all and it was especially fantastic to see the wife and extended family of the late Sir Rod Withers attending also.

RANCBA VIC Regional Reunion Wodonga

Nokka, thanks for the report on your ‘visit’ to the Ebden area et al. It looks like you had a great time and I/we are only sorry we missed it and thanks for the invitation. Maybe next time.
Bravo Zulu
Keghead Weaver.



The AGM of the NSW Chapter of the RANCBA will be held on Saturday, 24th September 2016 commencing at 11.00am at the Parramatta RSL Club, Macquarie Street, PARRAMATTA NSW 2150.  All positions on the Committee will declared vacant and all financial Members of the NSW Chapter can be nominated and seconded to any position. Also as previously advised, the voting of the acceptance of Associated Membership will be held also on this day.

As normal, on completion of the AGM and any outstanding business arising, the Get Together will be held. All partners, family and other friends are cordially invited to attend this function. More so for Serving CIS Sailors of the RAN, as it is you people (m/f) who we hope will carry on the Association – one of the best in the Ex Service Organisation.

Parramatta RSL Club is located in Macquarie Street, just off the Mall and within easy walking from the Interchange (rail & bus) so please make the effort to attend

Should you be unable to attend, could you please advise the following, and also your approval or not of Associated Membership.

President Allan Moffatt
Vice President Ken Swain
Secretary Ray Mundy


Allan Shorty Moffatt OAM

RIMPAC 2016 by Cruise Line SUN PRINCESS

Kinnishiwa, Just to advise that Helen and I , along with Sharon & Ray Mundy arrived home safely on the morning of the 4th September, berthing at the Overseas Terminal, Circular Quay after 75 great days at sea. Also onboard a great friend from way way back, ex CY Jack Hawkins and his wife, but they left us in San Francisco and flew home.

Loved Hong Kong , Japan – Korea , when in China climbed the Great Wall of China, (it is nearly 6.000ks long, so only a very very small part of it), Vladivostock in Russia good, but the best I would say was Alaska , what a beaut place, then down to Canada and then San Francisco , did the USS ARIZONA Memorial and the USS MISSOURI in Hawaii and then a Vietnam Veterans Memorial Service was held onboard and I was asked to do the ODE . Quite a few ex Vietnam Vets Army onboard but the Navy carried out the Service, so it was done CORRECT!!!!  Tahiti was good but Bora Bora beautiful , now know why so may movie people go there.  Auckland was good and also the Bay of Isles

Also when in Korea we visited both ports of Inchon and Busan (when I was there aboard HMAS ANZAC in '57 as part of a UN Deployment and we had to spend a few weeks there and under the control of FO2 FEF flying his Flag aboard HMS BELFAST – also with HMNZS ROYALIST and HMAS TOBRUK, it was then called Pusan).  Anyway visited the very well kept and organised Korean War Memorial Cemetery and on visiting the Memorial Hall the first thing to see was the Plaque of HMAS ANZAC who had carried out heavy active service in 1953 . It is well shown with some of the Plaques that I noted, HMAS SYDNEY, BATAAN, TOBRUK and WARRAMUNGA .

Got a bit choppy from when we left the Bay of Isles till off Sydney . Some didn't go too well, but I loved it.  Also we had to leave Hong Kong a day early – beat a massive typhoon bearing down. Had couple of helo medivacs, one taken off by Korean Coast Guard and also one off the Aleutians by the US Coast Guard taken off for health problems. It pays to do a FULL Medical check and be in reasonable health .

Now back to reality and get the mower, whipper snipper out!!!!!


Allan Moffatt OAM san
President RANCBA NSW Chapter

August 2016 Entries


1. Just a bit over a week before people start rocking into Wodonga, everything is ready for a fabulous long weekend on the Hume weir. Further good news is that they have had to start releasing water from the weir and as of today Monday 29th August the weir is sitting on 85% with more water expected. If you like fishing you should be very happy!!

2. A bit of housekeeping - Please be aware that to date there are about a further 12 bookings staying in the park that are not attending our function. Therefore please be mindful of noise after 10 pm each night as you move around the park.

3. As of time of writing, 14 couples and 1 single have pre paid for events excluding lunch at the Beechworth RSL and dinner at the Wodonga RSL, both on Saturday. We will collect this money at the meet and greet on Friday evening. The costs are lunch at $9 each and dinner $25 each. It would assist us if you could have close to the correct money if not correct. Sorry about this change of plan.

4. The dinner at the Wodonga RSL will be a normal function meal of two choices. They have selected what we believe will suit everybody (even with a bit of swapping). Main: Stuffed breast of chicken with parma ham & swiss cheese or Roast loin of pork with baked apple  jus. They will be served with vegies and rosemary potatoes. Dessert will be either Pavlova with berries or sticky ate pudding.

5. POSITIONS AVAILABLE - If you would like to catch up with any of the below listed people, its not too late. Cabins and sites are still available and we would welcome you if you wish to join us. the park number is 02 6020 6130 - Boathaven holiday park and mention RANCBAVIC for a 10% discount. Please let me know if you wish to join us on 0418 524 067 or if you require further information.

John Nokka White


John & Rachel White Peter Guy & Narelle Parkinson Ray & Sharon Mundy
Ian & Marion Schubert Frank & Larroine Lawton Roy & Lyn Barber
Gordon & Shelley Ingram Rick & Jan Easom Graham & Eva Bence
John & Kathy Gray Ian & Vanessa Hogarth John & Julie Gorski
John & Sue Falk Kym & Heather Parry Ian & Diane Dougal
Ken & Ruth Weaver John & Marg Barwood Jack Bawden & Linda Winstanley
Gary Guidotta & Shirley Jim & Pat Quick Frank & Evelyn Hoy
Gary & Debbie Swanton Keith & Geraldine Crew Ray & Sandra Knights
Peter & Marion Bird Alan & Val Sullivan Clive & Yvonne Voss
Hughie & Pat Green Tamara & David Rees Shane & Jacqui Withers
The following are Rod and Jans grandchildren - Jess & Alysa - Josh, Jade & Hudson

Barry Kane Don Parsons Ern Power Gary Johnson Chris Gallagher Mike McCrae
Brendon Honey Jan Withers Tina Norton Lwanne Legg Ann Drohan Des Byrne
Phil Sharp Kel Nagle Peter Davies


Follow this link for Update 2.


Vietnam Veterans Day - at Sea.

Les Renfrey, Ray Mundy, Sharon Mundy, Coral MacLean, Bill MacLean, Shorty Moffatt, after service held on  Vietnam Veterans Day (at sea).


WRANS at Sea.

A group of ex WRANS met up while travelling on Sun Princess around the Pacific and got together for a photo. Sharon Mundy (Blanch) RO served 74 to 97; Robyn Ralston ROT and Reg, 64-68; Joan Jerzyna (Priest) Tel, 53-55; Coral McLean (Cottenden) WTR 78-98; Helen Moffatt (Foreman) ROT 63-67; Carol Mills (Rodgers) WTR 66-70.

Kind Regards, Ray & Sharon


RANCBA National Reunion Canberra - 8th - 11th November 2016 - Update

At a meeting of the RANCBA ACT Chapter National Reunion Team on Thursday 18th the following decisions were made and advice provided.

Registrations for the National Reunion will close off on Friday 30th September. After this date no further registrations will be accepted.

Those wishing to purchase National Reunion merchandise have until Friday 2nd September to place orders. Although registrations will remain open, you will not be able to purchase merchandise. Please be aware that no National Reunion Merchandise will be sold at or during the reunion.

General Information/Program

Currently registrations stand at 296.

Tuesday 8th November 2016 - Meet and Greet – Hellenic Club, Woden.

Although the official Meet & Greet will commence at 1600. There is no reason why those wishing to do so meet at the Hellenic Club earlier.

If you have any special diet requirements for please advise us at the Meet and Greet.

Wednesday 9th November 2016 - Canberra Southern Cross Yacht Club, Mariner Place, Yarralumla.

The lake cruise now commences at 1030 repeat 1030 and is fully booked out with 100.

The BBQ at the Yacht Club commences just after midday and the lake cruise will finish before this time. We currently have 251 paid up to attend the BBQ. The BBQ will wrap-up at 1500.

The Last Post Ceremony commences at approximately 1630 at the Australian War Memorial – More details to follow.

Thursday 10th November 2016 – Golf/Bus Tour

Golf - Full details of the golf will be advised at a later date. For those of you who did not select the golf option it is not too late. Should you have registered and now wish to join the golf list please email me or our treasurer Sam Hughes. Our email addresses are  or Sam Hughes 

Bus Tour – The bus tour, which includes a visit to HMAS Harman where we will lay a wreath and have morning tea is limited to 100 persons. We have only 25 seats left, so get in quick.

There are no functions planned for the Thursday PM, but once again there is no reason why friends cannot meet up at the Hellenic Club or in the Woden area and have a meal together.

Friday 11th November 2016 - Remembrance Day and Finale Dinner

AM - Remembrance Day – Australian War Memorial – We are expecting at least 300 in our contingent at the AWM. More details closer to the day.

PM - We have 276 paid up for the Finale Dinner at the Hellenic Club. Likely to be tables of 10.


If you have not registered and you would like to the links are below.

Registration Form -

Participant Listing -

Should you need assistance or a hardcopy of the registration form, please email making sure that you make clear in the email subject line RANCBA Reunion to avoid SPAM.

Ken (Keg) Weaver
President RANCBA ACT

The Program Information on the drop-down Reunions menu (2016_Reunion_V5.htm) has also been updated.


Fred Harper Back on Deck.

“Rumours of my demise have been greatly exaggerated”. 

(Follow this link for previous entries on Fred)

I spent a month in hospital but have been home for two weeks now, thank god!

Am stuck in a wheel chair until the skin graft takes which unfortunately takes time for us old B’s.

Many thanks to Ruwie for acting as my paper boy and to Tackers for the visit.

You don’t know what a shock it is to wake up and have Tackers at the end of your bed.

Very sad news of Spin Hayward, Sandy McNab while I was incarcerated and now Wizza.

All great blokes!

Fred Harper
Bribie Island

Welcome back Fred, good to see you on the mend!

From Keghead Weaver:
Welcome back Fred. There would only be one thing worse than finding ‘Tackers at the end of your bed’ and that would be finding Ruwie AND Tackers there!!! Be nearly enough to make you ‘sign-on’!!!
CU at the Reunion

From Peter Baggott:
Paralympics coming up Fred. You will look good in a green and gold boiler suit.. keep getting fit and happy days....


Vale Ella Bell (wife of George).

For those that remember George Bell, I received the sad news that his wife Ella passed away in Canberra Hospital today from complications with leg ulcers etc.

She would have been 90 years of age in September.

For those of us, like myself, who had been lucky enough to meet her, she will be sadly missed.

RIP Ella

A lovely, lovely lady who will be truly missed.
Jim Anderson
Innisfail FNQ


Garden Island Signal Station (GISS).

G'day All,

Received the following email from Dave Pluck requesting information on the Garden Island Signal Station....If anyone has info or photies etc please advise the POC in the following email...Hopefully there's still a few people around who served there and can shed some light on it...My only memory of the Station was following their Prep hoists for Colours and Sunset in the early 70's....


If possible can you canvas members of your chapter(s) of the RANCBA to ascertain whether they can provide any information/memorabilia on the operation of the Garden Island Signal Station.

The intent is for the Navy Heritage Centre to establish a working model utilising signal flags (perhaps weather ones) and to create a museum in the offices underneath (to reflect on the towers heritage). The area surrounding the tower attracts a large number of visitors.

Steven can be contacted on 02 9359 2003 or or via mail: Naval Heritage Centre, Building 8, Garden Island, Woolloomooloo, NSW, 2011

Thank you


WORS Tony Froome
Bldg 89/90
Garden Island NSW
(W) 02 9359 2320
(M) 0438 861846

August Brisbane Comms Get Together at the Grand Central.

L to R:  Don Ruwoldt, Shane Jolly, Bob Simpson, Kev Ruwoldt, Tackers Miles, Bas Cleary, Trev Percival, Julie Fitz, Gus Dodds, Jim Eagles.

Thanks mate,


July 2016 Entries

Vale Kevin Robert 'Wizza' Wise R54196 (ex LTO)

Noel Chidgey advises:

Kev Wise passed away yesterday (29 July) in Cunnamulla, a msg was put on his Facebook page tonight about 4 hrs ago by I his wife Moya Wise.

This is the message..

Sad news for Kevin's friends ,Kevin passed away in Cunnamulla yesterday, we will not have any funeral details until next week.

RIP Wizza, No more rough seas but smooth sailing now.

RIP Wizza, Lest We Forget.  More information will be posted as it comes to hand.

Funeral Details:
Hello Noel, we as a family, have finally been able to make arrangements for Dad's funeral. It is on next Wednesday 17.8.16 at 1330hrs at St Patricks church in James st Toowoomba. Please forward this to any of his old Navy mates that may want to come. All welcome. There will be an afternoon tea at the Irish Pub in town after his burial.  Hope to meet you there.
Jenni, daughter of Whizza.

From the Archives:

Kevin Robert Wise R54196 - ex LTO.  DOB 20 March 1941, Joined RAN 21 March 1958.

From Trev (Percy) Percival:
Will miss Wizza's smile and happy yarns at our Qld branch of AGM. Rip mate till we meet again. Looks like we are all on the wrong side of the hill now.

From Keghead:
Was lucky enough to have known “Wizza” for quite some time. He even did ‘yard work’ on both mine and my wife’s houses here in Canberra. You could always rely on “Wizza” to turn up at the ‘Local Elections’ running for something or other, other than the ‘two-party’ government, that is. He never won, mainly because he only ever got ‘two votes’ - from family, but his heart was in the right place. He was a gentleman and will remember him from the early days on Vampire.
RIP mate
Keghead (& Ruth)

From “Wizza’s” grandson Caleb Tonkin.
There is a delay in the funeral plans and it probably won’t be held until next week. Will let you know as soon as possible, details, but will probably not be until next week in Toowoomba
Keghead and Noel Chidgey

From Bob Simpson:
A small recollection of six years’ service with the late Kevin Robert Wise – ‘Wizza’

I was fortunate enough to serve my first 6 years or so in the Navy with Wizza (aka ‘The Canvasback Kid from Cunnamulla’). Our ‘T’ class was delayed and we had to ‘work ship’ at FND (mainly the Officers’ patch in the married quarters, gardening) whilst our class was filled. We were drafted initially to Vendetta for a couple of months waiting for Vampire, which we commissioned on 23 June 1959. We spent a couple of very enjoyable years on the ‘Jewel of the Far East’ and then were drafted to Harman together. Risky place for bachelors – we both met our future spouses there. We finally learned what A/T was all about and after about 18 months we were flown to UK to commission and return Tide Austral/Supply to Australia. That was something – cabins for sailors!! I understand the engineers held the boiler room together with araldite for the trip home from Blighty! By this time I was his LTO! Mid commission on her, I was drafted to FND for CY(Q) then back to Supply via Harman. I was later to become his Yeoman on Supply. Being ‘under’ me as it were, never affected out friendship.

That was my first 6 years’ service with Wizza. I don’t know where he was sent, but I went to Sig School as an instructor, then to re-commission ‘Queen Bee’, on which I served until my DEE. I did see Wizza with Moya one Sunday at GI – he was bringing his wife in on visitors’ day and I was headed to the ‘wets’ at Kuttabul to catch up with a couple of other reprobates!

Wizza was a very capable Boxer in his youth and the contestant who overcame him in the Commonwealth Games qualifying, represented Australia - hence ‘Canvasback’. He used to sicken me with his fitness regime (envy) which included a jog from GI to the north side of the Harbour Bridge and back before breakfast!! I discharged after my 9 years and didn’t see him for quite a while. I used to get these mysterious ’phone calls on watch with DCA as an FSO during the ‘doggos’ – from various Foreign Embassies in Canberra. Wizza had enlisted in the Commonwealth Police Force and was able to make these ‘free’ calls from the embassies.

It wasn’t until about 2005/6 that I saw him again at the Anzac Day march in Brisbane – I didn’t recognise him! However, Tackers re-introduced me and when I crawled out from under that 5c piece, I apologised for my lack of recognition. His bulk had increased dramatically, and his hair and beard were pure whitish grey!

He must have travelled and considerably, too. Cunnamulla, Toowoomba, Brisbane, Canberra and Sydney all had the pleasure of his company at a number of ex-service events. I saw him on and off at Anzac parades or at our QLD AGM/BBQ, each time noticing that his health had gone quickly further downhill. His demise was not unexpected then, but that did not decrease the shock factor hearing that he had crossed the bar. I will miss his congenial ways and his good company. Another good mate gets drafted to the ultimate flagdeck!

Smooth sailing old fella, until we meet again. It was a pleasure to call you my friend!



1. This is a short update to advise everybody interested that Kath at Helloworld Rowville will have the second of 4 cruise weeks commencing on the 8th of August for 1 week. The purpose of these cruise weeks is to provide an additional incentive of $100 per cabin for two occupants to book the Cruise during this week. This offer is from the Cruise line Carnival. There is a number of people that have left their information with Kath over the past weeks and anybody can do so prior to the start of Cruise or wait until it commences. Call Kath on 03 9764 8487 anytime between now and the end of Cruise week. The same deal will apply for the next two cruise weeks which will be advised.

2. After this cruise week period I shall place another short update to promulgate the names of those booked to date.

3. Just a reminder that ex defence people receive an extra onboard credit per person, max 2 per cabin of $100 each. The onboard credits now total either $300 or $400 for ex defence people and $200 for non defence people if booked during this Cruise week.

4. If anybody has any queries or for any other reason please call me Nokka on  0418 524 067.

Cheers Nokka
Follow this link for more information.



DATE:- 9th to 11th SEPTEMBER 2016

1. there are a few things that have happened that I would like to bring everybody up to date with. Firstly our numbers have now reached 60 with still a number of people to book that have advised me they will be attending. Jan Withers, her son and daughter along with their families will also be spending the weekend with us. A list of those booked is at the tail of this update.

2. It is now possible to pay many of the events that are happening online through REGISTERNOW - its quite a simple process and to date 3 bookings have paid using this option. This is only for the payments that need to be made to us and does not include lunch at the Beechworth RSL and dinner at the Wodonga RSL which must be paid direct. I have made up a spread sheet to keep on top of these payments. If you prefer its fine to pay cash to us on arrival.  To register your attendance and to pre-pay the activities, please click this link:

3. After a couple of minor hiccups, Debbie at Boathaven has now got everybody that works there up to speed re our group. She has been managing bookings closely, especially the sites, and has been placing people to the most suitable sites together, either ensuite or standard sites.

4. If anybody has any dietary requirements could they please let me know - got yours Roy. I have been advised that both RSL'S can cater for these requirements.

5. I will most likely put out another update closer to the reunion, but if you have any enquiries please let me know. Also following is a list of those that are attending.

Cheers Nokka

John & Rachel White
Peter Guy & Narelle Parkinson
Ray & Sharon Mundy
Ian & Marion Schubert
Frank & Larraine Lawton
Paul & Jenny Rowe
Roy & Lyn Barbour
Gordon & Shelley Ingram
Rick & Jan Easom
Graham & Eva Bence
John & Kathy Gray
Ian & Vanessa Hogarth
John & Julie Gorski
John & Sue Falk
Kym & Heather Parry
Ian & Dianne Dougal,
Ken & Ruth Weaver
Barry Kane & Titch Parsons
Ern Power & Gary Johnson
John & Marg Barwood
Gags Gallagher
Gary (Jack) Bawden & Linda Winstanley
Mike McCrea
Gary Guidotti & Shirley
Brendon Honey
Jim & Pat Quick
Frank & Evelyn Hoy
Jan Withers + Son & Daughters families.

Follow this link for Update 1.


Barry (Jacko) Jackson in Sick Bay

Jacko is in hospital in Perth. I have been advised that it is a major stomach procedure and that he should be out of hospital within the next two weeks. I will keep you informed of any developments.

Dinga Bell


While I'm on a roll, I thought it time for a big thank you to two people that play a huge part In keeping us all together.

Firstly Gary Swanton, for those that are not aware he is still doing time at Cerberus Comms School. He has a position on our committee as Website Administrator but he does far more Than that. He does an amazing job enabling us to get our message across to all and Sundry. He has outstanding computer skills which have assisted us in having a huge Online presence enabling online payments, ordering product online as well as cruise and Reunion information. Gary has opened RANCBAVIC up to over 1000 mainly ex Comms People registered online across Australia and overseas on our site. Gary works on our committee and has a great input to our meetings and is an huge Bonus for us with the Comms school. He has an excellent can do attitude and his opinion Is highly valued. BZ Gazza.

Secondly, Another long standing ex communicator who goes a long way to keeping us Ex Communicators nationally together and up to date is John Curbishley. John now lives in Melbourne near his family close to Werribee. I recently had a catch up Coffee with him and although his health is a little up and down he looks a million dollars. As he always did.  He has been dedicated to keeping us all up to date for a very long time and does an Outstanding job maintaining the very broad range of information on his website. A huge BZ to you also John.

I know you all appreciate both of these outstanding ex Comms chaps, so don't forget to Show your appreciation.

John Nokka White


The Victorian Rancba committee recently had a meeting and due to the very sad passing of our President Rod Withers, the committee structure is now as follows:-

John 'Nokka' White moves from Vice President to President.
Ian 'Stumpy' Broadsmith is now Vice President, along with Jan Withers as female Vice President.
Jan Gallagher has taken up the role as Treasurer as elected at our last AGM, we have waited for Jan to back out of some other obligations.
Finally Ian Hogarth remains the Secretary.

Please hound us if you need anything done.


Ex LRO Fred Harper in Sick Bay

Have received advice through Tony Miles from Stew Parnaby that Fred has been admitted to the Peninsular Private Hospital, Redcliffe and at this stage is not in good health.

Stew may have more information later tonight or tomorrow morning. Tony and I will visit the hospital to see Fred tomorrow.

Kev Ruwoldt
Thanks Ruwie, our thoughts are with Fred and family.

Update 08/07/16:
Tackers and I visited the Peninsular Private Hospital to be told that Fred was to be admitted and they had no idea when he would arrive. They would not tell us any more info.

Rang Stew to be told that Fred was in the Redcliffe Peninsular Hospital and was to be transferred to Peninsular Private later today.

Found Fred at the Redcliffe Hospital to find out he had been there for 16 days with a Pressure Ulcer on his left foot. On arrival his kidneys were not good and his urine was black. They have drained his foot three times this week and his kidneys are back to normal. Sometime next week he is to have a skin graft at the Private hospital. Hopefully this graft takes and he will be able to return home with hospital home visits. I will go back to see Fred tomorrow and keep you all in the loop.

Apologise for the mix up.

From Keghead Weaver:
Sorry to hear about Fred. Hope all has gone well and he is back home. Please give him my regards and tell him there is a ‘cold one’ waiting for him at the Reunion.

Update 15/07/16:
Tackers and I visited Fred this afternoon and he was looking good. Had his skin graft to his left foot and the Surgeon was a happy chappy. A DVA representative was to see him after we left to discuss Hospital Home visits. If all goes well he may be discharged Monday afternoon or sometime on Tuesday. Will call in and see him on Monday.

Update 19/07/16:
Whilst at the Gym this morning Fred rang to advise that his foot was being redressed and he would be leaving shortly for home. Asked Fred to keep in touch and to let me know how he is travelling.

Bravo Zulu: Honours and Awards to Australian Naval People 1900-2014

Ian Pfennigwerth has finished *Proofing* Volume 1 of his latest book - BRAVO ZULU.

The Book will be in the hands of the Publisher shortly, and then 'on the shelves' in August 2016. 'Eyes Front' as they say.

While work on Volume 2 continues apace - Ian does not have a definite date for Publication. I will keep you posted.

Each Volume approximates 820 pages - with Drawings, Maps, Illustrations and Pictures aplenty.

The book IS NOT simply a list of names and the Honour(s) received. Ian tells a story for each person.

In one way or another I have read the book a few times - and found it thoroughly enjoyable. I don't feel I go out on a limb by saying **you will also enjoy**.

So - I recommend you get in early and order. The best way is via Ian's Website: - then follow the prompts.

Terry Feltham

Vale Warren Francis 'Fred' Lloyd 0111964 (ex LCDR) CSM

It is my sad duty to notify you and your readers of the passing of Warren (Fred) Lloyd.

I have just been notified by Sharron of the passing of Warren (Fred) Lloyd. Fred passed away during the night at his home.

His funeral is 1230 Saturday 9th July at Pinegrove Great Western Highway Minchinberry in the West Chapel.

No further details available.

Gordon (Davo) Davison

Sad news, Lest We Forget
I can't find Fred's record of service card in Archives, can someone help me out with his official number or any other  detail. (The following explains why - unfortunately I can't access any record of service after 1970, when Sailors Records moved from cards to EDP).

From Gordon Davison:
From 1985 navy list Warren Francis Lloyd dob 28/09/55 O111964.  He paid off as LCDR, awarded CSM 1995, he was possibly the only RAN member to serve as an exchange officer with the RN during the Falklands conflict. He was suffering with Cancer and other complications, he is at peace now.

From Ian Pitkethly:
Mick Eccles (ex CPORS) rang me a short time ago to let me know about Freddy Lloyd. I then had a look at the website.

Both Mick and I served at Albatross with Fred in the mid to late 70's. Of course after that I saw Fred around various postings. Fred was a real nice bloke and it was sad news.

I am pretty sure Fred was an R110 number but last three digits unknown, there should be some blokes of that vintage who may recall his O/N

Hope this helps
Ian Pitkethly

From Frank Aldred:
We first met at ALBATROSS in 77 when he was part of the CAG. I am fairly sure that he posted to KIMBLA after that. We then Followed each other around as kellicks in YARRA (Fred in 82), RS in PARRAMATTA (83) and then on to BRNC Dartmouth where Fred graduated as a SBLT in 1984. After his training in the UK at RNC Greenwich, HMS DRYAD and HMS MERCURY, Fred earned his Bridge Watchkeeping Certificate with a six month deployment to the Falklands. He served as a LEUT in FHQ as the Fleet Comms Assistant. After PWO training, he was appointed as OPSO in HMAS Darwin. Fred was promoted to LCDR and was awarded a Conspicuous Service Medal. As many of the reflections on Facebook have noted, Fred was a true gentleman, a dedicated communicator and an outstanding officer. Rest in peace.


Vale Shirley Fenton Huie WR1955 (ex TEL)

Ken Weaver noticed an article in this morning's CT (Saturday 02 July) about the passing of Shirley Fenton Huie on 23 June 2016.  Shirley was a former WWII WRAN stalwart who attended our 2002 Reunion in Canberra, along with a number of other WWII WRANS.

Many of you will recall that Shirley is the author of 'Ships Belles - The story of the Women's Royal Australian Naval Service in war and peace, 1941 - 1985'.

Shirley Wanda Nonie Huie was born on 09 August 1924 in Peak Hills, NSW and joined the WRANS on 27 March 1944, serving as a Telegraphist at PENGUIN and HARMAN during the final months of WWII, discharging in October 1945.

A lovely lady who, along with other WWII WRANS, really enjoyed being part of the RANCBA Canberra Reunion in April 2002.  Shirley had a long and interesting life, follow this link for more detail:

It was a pleasure to have met her, may she rest in peace.

John Curbishley
Web Yeoman

On behalf of the RANCBA (ACT) we would like to offer sincere condolences to the family.

Remembering her from the 2002 Reunion, she was a wonderful lady and will be missed sadly.

Lest We Forget

RIP Shirley

Ken (Keghead) Weaver

Shirley Fenton Huie (far right) with Pedro, Elinor Swan (far left) & NK. RANCBA Reunion 2002

                    Ships Belles Jacket Cover

Vale Barry John 'Spin' Hayward R54250 (ex LRO)

It is my sad duty to report that Barry "Spin" Hayward (R54250 ex LRO) passed away last Saturday (25th June 2016) aged 77 years.

His funeral is on Monday 4th July at Blackwell's Chapel, 40 Sandpiper Crescent, Aberfoyle Park S.A. 5159 at 1100 hours.

I am sorry that at this time I have no other details, however, I will attend his funeral and pass on our condolences and those of the Association to his family and friends.

Kind Regards
Dave Dixon
Thanks Dave, sad news.  I will update again tomorrow with service details from Archives.  RIP Spin.
Lest We Forget.

From the Archives:
Barry John Hayward R54250
Date of Birth:  07 February 1939
Joined RAN:  28 April 1958
DEE:  27 April 1967

Postings:  MELBOURNE 1959/60, ALBATROSS 60/61, MELVILLE 62/64, SYDNEY 64/65, PALUMA 65/66, WATSON 66/67, DEE April 1967.

June 2016 Entries

Alan Hellier OBE (Over Bloody Eighty)

Thought you might like this photo of Alan 'Shags' Hellier at his 80th birthday party, along with some of his former ODs.

(L to R) Frank Aldred, Shags, Bert Abel, Doug Conn and Pedro Franklin.

Doug Conn

From Keghead Weaver:
Shags, welcome to the OBE Club, got mine a few months ago. Shame it couldn’t have been from HRH!!!
Have one for me and I’ll have one (or two) for you.

From Jim Anderson:
Onya Shags. Travel well old mate.


Bob Ison in Sick Bay?

Heard a buzz from Bob Batty (EX CPORP) that Bob Ison is in hospital. No further information at this time. Maybe someone else has heard and has more info. Bob (Batty) is trying to get back onto his source for more info. Will pass on any news if it is forthcoming

Gympie Inall
Thanks Gympie, let's hope Bob is ok.  If anyone has heard more please let us know.

Stretch Beck has been in touch with Bob via email, who better to tell the story but Bob himself:  For those of you who would like to contact Bob, his email address is linked here.

Yes, I have had a bit of a hard time, unfortunately I had throat cancer which had to be treated with Radiation, it couldn’t be operated on. The Radiation killed the Cancer (goods news), I don’t want to go through that again, my chest and back were blistered and the skin came off leaving raw flesh that bled every time the dressing was changed, it was bloody painful, unfortunately I also have a number of nasty side effects (not so good news).

The Radiation killed the saliva gland on the left side of my mouth and my immune system, I cannot wear my top dentures because of a mouthful of painful mouth ulcers (thank goodness for pain killers, good news) and they need Saliva which I am not producing enough of to cure themselves (bad news).  Also, because of the lack of Saliva I find it very difficult to swallow solid food so my meals are Pureed (no too bad but I would love to fang into a steak occasionally.

A few months ago I started having dizzy spells and felt like passing out, my blood pressure dropped to 65 (bit of a worry), after weeks of playing with blood pressure tablets and getting worse, we finally did a blood test, when the Dr got the result he rang me at home and told me to get to hospital immediately because I needed an urgent blood transfusion, I did and the hospital did (took 8 hours for the transfusion).

Last month I was diagnosed with 2 cancers behind my right knee, they were removed and I had a skin graft, unfortunately he nicked a couple of veins and I had a big bleed next day so he had to come in on the Saturday of the long weekend and redo the operation, the graft has not taken well and I am still having problems with it, the lack of an immune system makes it a lot harder for everything to heal.

Unfortunately, I had to give up my Ministry for 12 months although I remained a Padre with the RSL & Viet Nam Vets, I am slowly getting back into it now, also sadly we had to sell the van, we were not able to use it and it was a shame to just sit there doing nothing, we may get a small one later although not very likely.

Anyway, not all doom and gloom, I have had a special mouth guard made to stop my lower teeth irritating the mouth ulcers, an Oncologist from the Cancer Clinic is going to put me on high doses of vitamin E to try and heal the ulcers and I am trying some natural remedies.

Thanks for the offer of help mate, much appreciated, however, we are coping fairly well, I have not quite lost my sense of humour and I AM STILL ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE GRASS.

Regards & God Bless
Bob Ison
Thanks Bob, we hope things are on the improve from here.
All the best.


Vale Graham Ross 'Sandy' McNab R54574 (ex RO).

DOB: 25 May 1941
Joined RAN : 26 July 1958
DEE: 25 July 1967

It is with deep sadness that I notify members of the sudden passing of Graham [Sandy] McNab.

Sandy passed away at about 1400 Friday 24th June 2016.

Funeral details will be forwarded when know.

Sincere Sympathy to Pat and her family.

Alan Rodgers
President RANCBA WA

I am still in a state of shock after hearing the sad news.  Our prayers and thoughts are with Pat, along with their family, during this most difficult of times.  More information will be published when known.  May he RIP.  A stalwart communicator who has given me (and others) much assistance over the years.  He will be missed.
John Curbishley
Web Yeoman


Funeral Details:
Sandy's funeral service will be held at Karrakatta Cemetery on Wednesday 6th July 2016. Guests to assemble at Main Gate at 12.30 for a cremation service. RANCBA members requested to form a guard of honour for the arrival of the casket at the chapel. AWE will be displayed, medals may be worn.

Tea, biscuits & 'waries' (all true) will be had in the lounge following the service.

A good hand and a good friend - Lest We Forget
David MacLean

Eulogy Reflection by David MacLean:

There was standing room only as an estimated 300 people jammed the chapel at Karrakatta to celebrate the life of Graham 'Sandy' McNab.

People from the cycling, aviation and naval families vied for space in the chapel, some followed the service from outside the building.

RANCBA members formed a Guard of Honour, escorting Sandy's casket from the hearse to the alter.

The eulogy, written by Sandy's daughters Karen & Denise, was delivered by the celebrant as the girls were too emotional to speak publicly.

A glowing tribute was delivered by the patron of the RANCBA WA Chapter, Commodore Bob Trotter OAM RAN (Rtd).

Jack Shave shared 55 years of sins and undetected crime in an almost believable manner.

Following the service, guests mingled with the family sharing tea, bikkies and memories, some tears but much joy and laughter.

Vale Sandy McNab, may you have smooth seas and following winds on the next part of your journey.


Eulogy Reflection by Alan Rodgers (President RANCBA WA):

Ladies and Gents, this is a time of great reflection and time for me to say Thank You to many people who did their bit for Graham.   It is also a time of gratefulness for me as President of the RANCBA WA to say thank you.  For me as a friend being too far away to be in attendance for such a loved man is sorrowful enough, but to hear that everyone played such a wonderful part to say farewell to Graham I say thank you.  I advised Pat that I would pay her a visit on my return to Perth. As you say David, I trust that Graham (Sandy) has smooth seas and gentle breezes on the continuance of his voyage.

Farewell mate, and to all of you cheers.
Alan Rodgers

Sandy & Pat, Melbourne Reunion 2008

From the Archives:
Graham Ross 'Sandy' McNab R54574
DOB: 25 May 1941
Joined RAN : 26 July 1958
DEE: 25 July 1967

Cerberus (Rct TEL) 26 July 1958 to 4 Sep 1959
Diamantina (ORD RO/RO) 23 Nov 59 to 29 June 1960
Melbourne (RO) 9 August 1960 - 02 October 1961
Cerberus (RO) 03 October 1961 - 18 November 1962
Sydney (RO) 19 November 1962 - 02 December 1962
Melbourne (RO) 03 December 1962 - 18 December 1962
Cerberus (RO) 19 December 1962 - 13 January 1963
Bass/ Melville/ Coonawarra (RO) 14 January 1963 - 18 January 1964
Moresby (RO) 6 March 1964 - 05 March 1965
Harman (RO) 06 March 1965 - 01 January 1966
Melville (RO) 05 January 1966 - Discharged Engagement Expired 25 July 1967

From Roger Bower:
As a very long time friend of Sandy McNab, and regular visitor to your site watching his research grow on ships ID’s/callsigns/letters, I have to report that Sandy has crossed the bar.

Had a call from his youngest daughter around noon today, that he died in Perth hospital yesterday 24th. Do not know if you will get an ‘official’ report from the West, but was asked to pass to anyone who knew/worked with/befriended him. May he RIP. Sincerely Roger Bower ex RN

From David Wescombe-Down:
So sad that we have lost another fine shipmate in Sandy McNab. Ingrid and I send our condolences to all of their family and friends at this time. I first met Sandy and Pat at Coonawarra in April 67, although we were on opposite watches, and it was only weeks before they headed south for DEE & marriage.. Reconnection in more recent years has seen a proliferation of email information exchanges enhanced by all-too-brief catch-ups here in Adelaide: at our place, their transit caravan park and even a Chinese restaurant on one occasion. Not much compared to others perhaps, but friendship is about intensity, not just for how long. Sandy was always a good person, good mate, chirpy, quick of wit, happy to share experiences/advice at the drop of a hat, and would help anyone with anything within his scope…as he did for me on a number of fronts. Our sincere condolences and best wishes to Patricia and family. Vale old chap & smooth sailing. Dave (Wescombe-)Down ex-RS, QTH Adelaide.

From Kev Ruwoldt:
I just recently attended Steve Aiberti’s ceremony in Perth (Monday 20th). Talking to Sandy waiting for the service to commence I asked him had he researched Shore Establishment C/signs. He said not yet and would consider it in the near future. After the service everyone was invited to the Lake Joondalup Village for Steve’s wake. I sat at the table with Sandy, Ben Franklin talking about the good old days. Sandy asked me where I was staying, told him Coogee. He offered to give me a ride to Canning Bridge where I could catch a train to Cockburn. We had a nice talk on the way about his new retirement home, his soon planned caravan trip to Port Lincoln in SA.

Yesterday I opened an email from Sandy (sent Friday) with some VH- C/signs and asked me could I help him with those he did not remember. He was also writing a short history of Steve for Shorty’s National Newsletter. Sandy did a great presentation of Steve’s career in the navy.

Sent Sandy a list of what I could remember yesterday morning. Allan (Buck) Rogers rang me in the afternoon informing me of Sandy’s passing. I just couldn’t believe it. Sandy had been part of my RO’s course at Flinders in 1959. From memory I think that just leaves John (JCO) Gray and myself now, not sure of Kerry (Rocky) Lusk.

Sandy and Pat attended every National Reunion and were looking forward to attending Canberra later this year. He will be missed.

RIP old mate, wish you smooth seas.

From Bill Aylott:
Sad to see Sandy has gone to the big MWO. Smooth seas Sandy? Lest We Forget
Bill Aylott

From Keghead Weaver:
Am still in shock at the news of Sandy’s passing. We had many a long discussion with regards to ‘callsigns’, his pet ‘project’, plus many other things and I still cannot believe this sad news. Sincere condolences from myself and Ruth, personally and from the members of the ACT Chapter
RIP mate
Keghead and Ruth

From Lance & Chris Sutherland:
What a shock to hear the sad and unwelcome news about Sandy, we send our sincere condolences to Pat and the family. I have many fond memories of Sandy. I first met Sandy In the early sixties, he was at the signal school doing some occasional sea time on the SAR and the tug.  We had many convivial ales and quite a few runs ashore. Then in February 64 we met up again when we both commissioned Moresby. Over the years we have had the pleasure of meeting up with both Sandy and Pat at the many reunions and on their trips around the country. We are eternally grateful for the hospitality that they extended to our daughter when she travelled through the west a few years ago.
A good shipmate who will be sorely missed by all who knew him.
Lest we Forget
Lance and Chris Sutherland

From Dave Jeffrey:
Just some more words about Sandy. I first met him in Darwin in late 1965. He was a badge man RO and I was no badge Kellick!!! He and Bloo McAskill were two of my operators on watch as I was given the job of RSOW. Interesting times but the watch ran very smoothly, even though I was the macca!!! Have met up with Sandy & Pat over the years, and was never surprised when the phone would ring and it was Sandy trying to reap old info out of the brain box. I see from recent entries he never stopped! My deepest sympathy to Pat and the family, we as the RANCBA Family will miss him deeply. I believe he died doing what he loved - fiddling around in the Mens' Shed underneath their new home. Vale Sandy - see you when I get to Navcommsta Eternity.
Dave Jeffrey

From John (JCO) Gray:
Graham McNab was an R2/59 class-mate, who unfortunately, was unable to go on leave with WA natives in '59 due to a stint in the FND hospital. He joined me and went on leave with the NSW natives instead and we had a great time in my (then) home town of Balmain, Sydney and places beyond.

We never served together after Cerberus, but touched base later in civilian life with occasional meetings, together with our wives, in WA, the 2008 Reunion, and our home in Melbourne. Emails and telephone calls being the main means of us keeping in touch through the years.

Sandy was a gregarious and spontaneous chap, with a penchant for all things Navy, in particular, recalling the biographies of comms personnel and their movements; comms equipment; call-signs etc. - an amateur naval comms historian one might say. Ask him for a one sentence explanation on a subject and you would get a detailed paragraph in reply.

His passing has come as quite a shock to Kathie and I and we express our sincere condolences to Pat and family.

Fair wind.... old Mate. John (JCO) Gray ex - RS, Point Cook Vic

From Graham Bence:
On my 80th birthday the McNabs were in town so I invited Pat and Sandy to join Eva, John & Kathy Gray, Margaret and Doug Boydle at a restaurant in Niddrie.  It was a Greek restaurant and we had a lovely night and enjoyed ourselves immensely. I will always imagine him there and I was very shocked when Kev Ruwoldt sent me the news.  To Pat and Family we send our deepest condolences for the loss of a good man and shipmate.  RIP Sandy and smooth sailing.
Graham and Eva.

From Shorty Moffatt:

I could not believe it when I logged on after returning home from a 75 day cruise and to see that Sandy had sadly passed away. I first met Sandy when along with Lance Sutherland (TO) and our leader,LRO David 'Spider' Webb we were the Communicators to Commission HMAS MORESBY in 1964, and even when we left the ship, we kept in contact and was looking forward to seeing him at the National Reunion in Canberra in November , but sadly that is not to be.  Sandy may you Rest in Peace and it was indeed a privilege to have served and known you
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt.



1. After spending the past weekend in Wodonga organising a very interesting range of activities for our reunion, I can now provide the activities planned. Firstly I must thank John & Marg Barwood and the Beechworth RSL President Brendon Honey, all ex communicators living in Beechworth, for assisting us wonderfully.

2. On Friday evening we shall have our meet & greet from approx. 5.30 pm. Food will be provided as in the past. The park has an excellent indoor/outdoor conference/activities room which has a full kitchen with all cooking facilities, including crockery & cutlery provided. Plenty of tables and chairs both indoors & outdoors, even loads of armchairs for the old boys.  Sunday morning breakfast will be in the same location with all food and coffee etc provided. The cost for Dinner and Breakfast will be $15 per person as in the past.

3. On Saturday we have booked a 53 seat bus for the day and evening. The bus will depart the park at 9 - 9.15 am and head to Yackandandah, a lovely little town where we will spend 30 minutes for a wander around.  We then head off to Beechworth for the day. The intention is to split into two groups for different activities. One group will do a Ned Kelly courthouse hearing where he was tried. This will require participation from some of the courthouse group. The second group will head off on a guided historical walking tour of Beechworth including a Gorge and waterfall. I am told there are some outstanding features on this tour. Both activities are 1 hour duration. The groups will then swap around for the alternate activities. The cost for these activities are $6 pp for the courthouse and $7 pp for the tour. Lunch will then be provided at the Beechworth RSL (with bar) at a cost of $9 pp.  On completion of lunch there will be time to wander around the shops etc of a very historical township.  The bus will depart Beechworth for the park at approx. 4 - 4.15 pm.

4. After a freshen up, the bus will collect us again, taking us to the Wodonga RSL for dinner. Departure will be at 6 pm. A two course meal will be provided with of course a full bar. Cost of dinner will be $25 pp. At about 9.30 the bus will return us to the park. The total cost all up for the bus is $20 per person all up.

5. All bookings have been placed together at the park, both cabins and sites. future bookings will also be placed with these bookings.

6. Anybody that would like further information, or has any queries, please give me a call on 0418 524 067. There are still lots of enquiries coming in so I expect the group total to be the largest reunion held so far.

Footnote: It appears that we have just missed out on Little Pattie - She is playing at the Beechworth RSL the Saturday prior to our reunion - of course you can arrive early!!!

Cheers Nokka

Group bookings to date
John & Rachel White - Peter Guy & Narelle Parkinson - Ern Power & Gary Johnson
Barry Kane Titch Parsons Ray & Sharon Mundy - Ian & Marion Schubert
Frank & Lorraine Lawton Paul & Jenny Rowe - Roy & Lyn Barber
Gordon & Shelley Ingram Rick & Jan Easom - Graham & Eva Bence
John & Kathy Gray - Ian & Vanessa Hogarth - John & Julie Gorski
John & Mark Barwood - John & Sue Falk - Brendon Honey
Jan Withers

Follow this link for more info..

Vale Peg Josephs, wife of CAPT Harry Josephs RAN Rtd

Ken Weaver advises, for those interested, following in CT Death Notices Sat Jun 18.

"Loving wife and best friend of Harry of 74 years passed away 14 June 2016.

A celebration of Peg’s life will be held at Norwood Park Crematorium Mitchell ACT 1030 Tuesday 21st June 2016.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Legacy ACT”

Our condolences to the family.

Keghead Weaver
Sad news, Lest We Forget.

Harry & Peg, VLSVA Dinner 2015

VALE Lawrence John Passmore F5515 / R35125 (ex-Tel)

On 17 Jun 2016, at 10:42 AM, David MacLean wrote:

Regret to report that ex-Tel Lawrie Passmore died aged 89 on Wednesday. Funeral @ Karrakatta, Tuesday 21 June at 10.00am. Lest We Forget.

From the Archives:

Lawrence John Passmore F5515 / R35125
dob 20.07.1927 b Yilgarn W.A
ENLISTED Fremantle 28.11.1944 RANR ORD SM II transferred ORD SM II W/T 12.2.1945
Rated ORD TEL 20/7/1945 rated TEL 27.1.1946 on the Gladstone.
Enlisted PERM 1.7.1947 for 2 years and took a Free Discharge 6.9.1948
Postings included Cerberus Gladstone Torrens Melville Latrobe Harman Leeuwin.

Lest We Forget. may Lawrie RIP.


Shorty Moffatt Off the Air

Just to advise heading off next week for a 75 day cruise, so hold all emails till we arrive back on 4th September.  I believe the Navy used to call this RIMPAC, looks interesting.

Should you have any queries regarding the RANCBA NSW, contact Ken Swain AM on 02 9907 9003 email  Also the NSW Chapter AGM will be held at the Parramatta RSL Club on Saturday 24th September commencing at 11.00am.  If you are unable to attend for any reason, please contact and advise Ken Swain so that your name can be noted as an apology.  All positions will be declared vacant on the Committee and any financial Member can be proposed and seconded to hold that Office position for the forthcoming year.

As normal on completion we shall hold our “Get Together” and all family, partners and friends are invited to attend.


Allan “ Shorty” Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW
Thanks Shorty, have a good trip.

Itinerary Map

Onya Shorty, have a good 'un om. Travel well.
Jim Anderson

Vale Steve Aiberti R53246 (ex RO)

Steve’s daughter Kerry just rang to advise that Steve has just crossed the bar. No other details known at this time. Will advise further when known.

Kev Ruwoldt
Sad news, may he RIP.

Follow this link for more detail.

The Funeral Service for Steve will be held at 10.30, Monday 20th June, at Pinaroo Valley Crematorium East, Whitford Avenue, Padbury, WA.

Medals should be worn.

For those who would prefer to send a card or a letter, Joan's address is:
42 / 1142 Wanneroo Road
ASHBY W.A. 6153


From the Archives (with thanks to Sandy):

AIBERTI Stephenson Arthur A R53246, born 22 April 1940 Reedys W.A. an R.C.  Address on entry Box 38 Wittenoom Gorge W.A. Date of entry (boys time under 18) 26.7.1957. Engagement 6 years from 22.4.1958

Postings include
Cerberus Rct CB 26.7.1957 - 1.1.1959 (ORD TEL 26.1.1958)
Swan 2.1.1959 - 21.5.1959
Warrego 22.5.1959 - 8.6.1959
Swan 9.6.1959 - 18.4.1960 (RO 26.6.1959)
Harman 18.4.1960 - 11.9.1960
Melville 11.9.1960 - 13.3.1961
Banks (DT'O) 13.3.1961 - 14.3.1961
Melville 15.3.1961 - 23.9.1961
ARL 42 + 6 to 9.11.1961
Harman 10.11.1961 - 20.2.1962
Cerberus 21.2.1962 - 30.3.1962
Harman 31.2.1962 - 29.4.1963
Kimbla 30.4.1963 - 20.9.1963
Air Sprite 21.9.1963 - 23.9.1963
Kimbla 23.9.1963 - 3.10.1963
Harman 4.10.1963 - 12.12.1963 thence ARL to 9.1.1964
Diamantina 10.1.1964 - 23.3.1964
Leeuwin 24.3.1964 -
DEE 21.4.1964

I do not know what Steve's COMC/FSU/FSC postings were, Forrest rings a bell, Carnarvon also and Cocos Is. and Pt Hedland. I recall he was OIC or A/OIC at the JT BO also.

Steve & Joan, Melbourne Reunion 2008

From Sandy McNab:
Our heartfelt sincere condolences to Joan and family, it has been a privilege to have known Steve as a shipmate, a workmate and family friend of many years standing. Sail on Steve we will see you anon.  Sandy and Pat.

From Alan Rodgers:
I hope and pray that Steve has smooth seas and gentle breezes for the continuation of his journey.

From David MacLean:
RIP Steve, a good hand & a mate since act 1961. Lest We forget.

From Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt:
It was not the news I was hoping for, but it may be a blessing if Steve was in pain, and now he is at rest.  On behalf of the RANCBA NSW Chapter we send out deepest sympathy. Kev, could you please pass on my sincere sympathy to Joan and family.
Lest we Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt

From Gavin Ryan:
Sorry to learn of Steve’s passing. Please pass on to Joan Wendy and my sincere condolences.

From Denny Gorton:
Sad to hear of Steve's passing. I was Divisional Chief at Leeuwin 1961/22 of Mokare Division. Can't remember if Steve was in my Division or not but I did catch him several times later. I'm knocking on 89 so if any of you want to give me a call, it would most welcome.
Denny Gorton

From Keghead Weaver:
Joan, Very sorry to hear of Steve ‘crossing the bar’. Thankfully he will no longer be in pain. He will be sadly missed by all who were fortunate enough to have met him.  Our sincere condolences.
Lest We Forget
Ken (Keghead) Weaver and Ruth
And from all at the ACT Chapter

From Penny Seib:
If at all possible I was wondering if condolences could be passed on to Joan Aiberti from Ken and Penny Seib (nee Broadbent). I joined up with Joan in Class No. 44 of 1959 and have many fond memories of our Naval times together. I know Steve will be greatly missed.
Ken and Penny Seib



Annual Parade and Memorial Service – Sunday 14th August 2016.

I received an Invite for the RANCBA to attend this Service as we have done so in so many previous years. The Parade will be assembling at 11.00am at Macquarie Road, Springwood and this will be followed by the social function at the Royal Hotel Springwood which Members are invited (very good social function – believe me).

This year the Guest of Honour will be Air Commodore Richard Lennon CSC and presently Command of the Air Mobility Group.  Also Terry Ryan will be a Special Guest as a Veteran of the Battle of Long Tan. Terry and D Company 6 RAR began to search for Viet Cong who had shelled Nui Dat the night before. They made contact about 3 pm and for hours had a massive fire fight . With Artillery support they were saved by Armoured Personnel Carriers about 6pm.  Private Ryan was wounded in this action, sadly 18 men were KIA and 23 were wounded as a result of this action.

Now if you are attending could you PLEASE advise our RANCBA NSW Chapter Committee person John Short on phone 02 9639 1474 email

This advise is requested as he can ascertain if the RANCBA will be Laying a Wreath/Floral Tribute or a Book. Please wherever possible attend.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

RANCBA National Reunion Canberra 8th – 11th November 2016

Registrations Closing 30th June 2016

G’day Shipmates,

Some general information regarding the National Reunion.

Currently we are close on 200 registrations, we did receive well over 400 plus expression of interest and we would certainly like to get 400 registrations.

Our planning is based on the need to advise business and suppliers of our numbers in July.   We would appreciate it if those of you who are not registered would do so in the next few weeks.  We have a lot of incomplete registrations sitting in the Register Now database and would like them completed.

We are aware, that many of our older members may be experiencing some trouble with the online registration format.  If you can help them to register or download the pdf Registration Form for them from the RANCBA website that would be appreciated.  I am also willing to either email or post a registration form to those who need same.

Completed hardcopy registrations can be forwarded by snail mail to our Secretary Peter Guy RANCBA C/o 30 Woollum Crescent, Rivett ACT 2611. 

 Rather than send your credit or debit card details to us, payments can be made directly into our account with the Commonwealth Bank, Woden ACT,   RANCBA ACT, BSB 062-914.  Account No. 28020443.   When making a payment to our account please provide sufficient details for payment identification.

Below are the links for online registrations and a list of those already registered?  Please note not all activities can be shown with each person registered, so if you want to undertake the same activities as friends it maybe best to check with them.

Registration Form

Participant Listing

Finally  if you or your friends need any assistance please feel free to email me or secretary Peter Guy or our president Keghead Weaver   Please ensure that the subject line contains the wording ‘RANCBA National Reunion and your official number’ so that the email does not go to Junk Mail.

Cheers and thank you,

Ken (Taffy) Eynon
RANCBA ACT Chapter National Reunion Team

Seeking Genny Humby - ex WRROS

My name is Robyn Jacka and I joined Jan ’67, to Comms School at Cerberus, then later Harman and Albatross.

My partner in all crimes at that time, until she drafted to Coonawarra in NT, was an ex South Aussie girl - WRROS Genny Erica HUMBY.

I lost contact with her around the late 70’s, when she had her Arabian Horse Stud in Deception Bay, QLD.

No one seems to know where she is now, and I wonder if there is an Ex Comms Wran or ex Comms Sailor out there who has any contact Information either in Oz or overseas.

Please forward any possible leads to me at

Thank you so much, and thanks for maintaining the News Board, it's terrific catching up with all the news.

Kind regards,
Thanks Robyn, I hope your search is successful.

Robyn received an almost immediate response from Scoops Cooper who was able to assist, as well as others who took the time to respond.  It seems Genny is overseas but will be back for the reunion in November.  Robyn sends a big thank you to those who helped out.

Expressions of interest - ex HMAS BANKS

Anyone interested in a working holiday on the East coast?

I am currently in negotiations to purchase the ex HMAS Banks. I am interested in talking to ex Navy personnel who would be interested in being involved in the project financially or physically.

My vision is to set up a live a board the vessel option [full or part time] for ex Navy personnel who would like to go back to their roots and be part of a crew again [without the yes sir, no sir], also, to help bring the Banks back to her former glory and cruise her up and down the East Coast of Australia as a Navy Museum, Naval Cadet Training Vessel and perhaps along the way a venue for other ex military personnel to have functions/events on board.

The vessel is currently fully operational/sea worthy and is situated in Yamba NSW but she is in need of some cosmetic TLC.

If you are interested in investing in the project as a partner or being involved in the project as a crew member who would be prepared to contribute $200 per week for accommodation on board plus a contribution towards food and 8 hours per week [in your trade or rating] to help bring the ship back to her former glory [full navy trim] I would be very much interested in talking to you.

For further information please contact me, I look forward to your responses and feedback.

Brian Burton
HMAS Vendetta 1970/1971

By Admin RANCBA. The following photo was copied from the web, it shows BANKS in all her former glory, circa mid-60's.


Sandy McNab sends:
These photo’s (follow link below) give you a good idea of its modified uppers, bridge area sometime back. The hold and well deck and accommodation area was also modified for its new charter use.

Some more history. . .

HMAS Banks (GPV901/Y266/G244/244) was a General Purpose Vessel of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), serving in a range of capacities from 1960 until 1995. She was named in honour of Sir Joseph Banks, the botanist aboard HM Bark Endeavour during the discovery of the eastern coast of Australia in 1770.

Banks was laid down by Walkers Ltd of Maryborough, Queensland in 1959 and launched on 15 December 1959 of that year by Mrs. W H Harrington, wife of the Second Naval Member of the Australian Commonwealth Naval Board. She commissioned into the RAN on 16 February 1960 with pennant number GPV901.

Banks wore the pennant numbers GPV901, Y266, G244, and finally 244 during her career.

On completion, Banks was fitted out for fishery surveillance duties in northern Australian waters. In April 1961, while operating in the Darwin area, she carried out a hydrographic survey of the Adelaide River area, becoming the first seagoing ship in 50 years to make the Adelaide River passage.

From 1963 to 1966, Banks provided training for members of the Papua New Guinea Division, based at Manus Island. During this period, Banks was manned by a mixed Australia-PNG crew.

In 1966, Banks returned to Sydney for a refit, before being handed over to the Royal Australian Navy reserve on 7 July, 1967, for use as a navigation and seamanship training vessel attached to HMAS Encounter, the Navy base in Port Adelaide, South Australia.

Banks decommissioned on 17 December 1982. She was allocated to HMAS Creswell at Jervis Bay, New South Wales as a General Purpose Vessel, and was used chiefly for navigational training. In 1985, she was transferred to HMAS Waterhen in Sydney, where she continued to be used for navigation training.

In 1995, Banks left Sydney to undergo a major refit at Port Macquarie, however the refit was terminated on 1 September 1995 after a fire on board. Banks was sold shortly after to the present owners (Pleasure Cruises Australasia of Ulladulla, New South Wales), who have converted her into a charter vessel, MV Banks.

From Shorty Moffatt:

In 1960, I was at Coonawarra and got a 'crash draft' to HMAS BANKS. The RO on there was the late Bert Adaway and he got bitten by something nasty down at either Howard or Berry Springs and was taken to ICU Darwin Base Hospital not in the best of health the with these massive lumps all over his body and I mean all over.

Anyway, at the stage we lived in the old WW II galvanised quonset huts, and the showers were also in a galvanised small building outside, and came back in from having a shower, and standing at my bunk was the late Ex CRS Bill Joyce and LPM Hoogwerth. Was asked where I had been, and virtually told them , 'if you had been 5 minutes earlier, you could have scrubbed my back'.  Was told to pack a bag, and I was joining HMAS BANKS which would be sailing at 11pm that night.

I had no idea what the radio comms set was on board or other equipment. Taken down to the Wharf and given a 5 minute instruction. Also was then informed the RO does the bridge wheelhouse telegraphs on entering and leaving harbour – this could be interesting to say the least!!!

I then met the Cox'n – PO Coxn John Dowson and never thought I would meet him again after I finally left BANKS, but when in 1964 was posted to Commission HMAS MORESBY, he was now the CPO Cox'n on board.

Whilst down doing the survey of the Adelaide River, I received traffic advising that the then Minister for Navy, John Gorton (later to become Prime Minister) and he would arriving in Darwin on his way to Singapore to sign a SEATO Understanding and that he would like to meet NOIC NA – Captain John Cooper RAN who was on board for the survey, so it was a quick recall for all the crew to rejoin and we got under way in very short notice.

Adelaide River was quite a great place – full of crocs and the Federal Government had plans on it becoming the 'food bowl' of SE Asia with big rice farms.

I really enjoyed my time on there, and the crew were great, but it was only a short time later, advised that I was being posted to the UK for 2 years exchange with the Royal Navy which was far better.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM

President RANCBA NSW


Vietnam Veterans Return Home - Report from Allan Moffatt

The Bodies of former Vietnam Veterans returned to Australia after many years I have just arrived home from being part of the Service for the 33 bodies of personnel killed in Vietnam, and had been buried in Singapore and Terendak Malaya.. Very good turn out from many ex Vietnam Vets, RSL Sub Branches , ex Service personnel from different eras and public. Also pleasing to see quite a few schools there. As you may have seen on the TV media 2 big Globemasters landed at RAAF Richmond and the caskets containing the exhumed bodies were transported from the aircraft by serving personnel of the 3 Services to a hangar where a Service was held for the NOK, others relatives and many from Federal/State Governments.

On completion, they were conveyed to Parramatta a distance of 40ks

Here at the Prince Alfred Park Memorial and Parramatta RSL Sub Branch was asked to form the start of a Guard of Honour. I received a correspondence could I carry out the duty of and I would say it was a privilege of being asked to do the Flag Orderly of the Australian National Flag when approx 33 hearses passed and the sounding of the Last Post . Also about 16 NSW Police motor bikes as escort and they were given a 'green light' run from RAAF Richmond .  It was highly executed and full credit to all those that made this happen.

Very moving and after so many years since the Vietnam War, I wont see anything like this again.

Pleasing to see Ex CPOSY Dave Sutherland in attendance (he had served on HMAS HOBART in its second deployment to Vietnam).

Lest we Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA & FNSA

Shorty at Parramatta  Shorty at Parramatta

Steve Aiberti in Sick Bay

John/Allan. One for QSO and RANCB Newsletter.

Sad news, Joan Aiberti rang me a short while ago to advise that Steve has been admitted to the Joondalup Hospital. His cancer has unfortunately moved rapidly and he is now having X-rays done to see what is needed to be carried out. If a further operation is deemed necessary he will then be transferred to the Charles Gairdener Hospital.

Will advise further details when known.

Kev Ruwoldt
Our thoughts are with Steve and Joan, we hope for a good outcome.

From Sandy McNab 02/06:

Further to my previous, and on behalf of Alan Rodgers, Pres. RANCBA WA who advises he has been in contact with Joan this afternoon.

The bleak situation is that Steve is still a patient at the Joondalup Medical Centre, C Ward Room 13 on 08 9408 8472 and no decision made to transfer him.

Alan also advised he had a brief telephone conversation with Steve who understandably sounded very unwell and is completely aware of the position which he is in.

Steve’s condition is rapidly deteriorating and any further medical treatment will be determined on Monday the 6th June.

As you can imagine in his laid up condition at this time, Steve may not even be in any position to respond to telephone calls.

I am planning a forenoon visit to the Medical Centre myself tomorrow Friday and hopefully if he is feeling just well enough spend some time with him.

Joan does not have access to emails. Their home number is 08 9308 1970 but note she may well be absent herself at the Medical Centre with family.

Kind regards. Sandy

From Kev Ruwoldt 02/06:

Just got off the phone after talking to Joan. Please do not send any emails to Steve’s email address. I ask you to remove his email from any group addresses as Joan does not know how to use the email system. At the moment she has a back log of 96 and will have to get her son-n-law to check them.

Steve’s condition is not good. Joan also advises with the tubes hanging out of his mouth it is not a good idea to ring him as it very difficult for him to talk. If no improvement by Monday Steve will be moved to Palliative Care and we all know that is not GOOD.


From Sandy McNab 03/06:

Further to our previous advices.

FLW REC from Kev Ruwoldt in Brisbane, a close family friend of Steve and Joan, who has been in communication with Joan this morning with a further SITREP and an additional request to hold on emails and phone calls.

I am off to Joondalup myself this forenoon to be with Steve for a while if I can. Thanks.

From Keghead Weaver:

Very sorry to hear about Steve. Just got back from trip to Sydney, medical appointments for my good wife, Ruth, so haven’t been looking at emails.

Please give Joan our sincerest wishes from both myself and Ruth plus all from the ACT chapter who were lucky enough to know him.

Update from Kev Ruwoldt 09/06:

Steve is being moved into Palliative Care today at the Glengarry Private Hospital, Duncraig.

He is still very sleepy but enjoying his rum and water when Joan slips him one. Yesterday he wanted a beer, of course that is out of the question.

Joondalup is very noisy so he is looking for some quiet time at Glengarry.



Dallas Graetz - Hawkesbury 1970

I was saddened by the passing of Rod (Dithers) Withers.

One of the best smokeys of my life was in 1970 when 12 of us (I think, 8 blokes and 4 girls) hired a Halvorsen Cruiser and had a big party on the Hawkesbury one weekend.

I am certain that Rod and Jan were on the boat, along with Surfie Lawrence, I think, Zot Evans, a Greenie called McGuinness and others I should remember but have forgotten.

In those days you could get your groceries from the Galley if you were going away and we got great food.

I have attached a couple of very faded old photo’s.




May 2016 Entries

Vale Yasmin Hardman (ex CIS)

Following received from Sonja Hellier, Hon Secretary RANCBA QLD

Alan has been asked to do the Service Eulogy at the funeral of Yasmin Hardman who joined RAN in July 1998 . She served in the CIS branch until July 2005 – on HMA Ships Newcastle, Arunta, Manoora and Toowoomba as well as Harman and Kuttabul.

Funeral will be on Monday 30th May at 11am Alex Gow, Cnr Breakfast Creek Road and Dunlop Street Newstead.

Some of our younger members may have worked with her.

Very sad news - too young, too soon.
Lest We Forget

Vale Louis Clifford (Cliff) Jakeman B3870 (ex TEL)

Funeral notice in this morning's Courier Mail advising of Cliff's passing on 14th May 2016. He was 91 years young.

Cliff was born in Buderim and joined the Navy in 1942. He served as Tel on a number of ships including Australia, Arunta, Shropshire and paid off from HMAS Moreton in April 1946. He passed away on the date of the Commissioning of HMAS Moreton last Saturday.

Cliff was a long time member of the RANCB Association, and transferred over to RANCBA Q in 2014.

Funeral will be at White Lady funerals, 270 Kelvin Grove Road Kelvin Grove at 11.30 on Thursday 19th May 2016.

Sonja Hellier
Hon Secretary
Lest We Forget.

Seeking 'Banjo' Patterson - AIB New Guinea - WW2

Bill Richards asks for our assistance.

I have an 1944 AIB NG WW2 photo with the names of some twelve men (including my father) that I have been trying to research for almost three years and it includes what appears to be a relatively young RAN man wearing no insignia.

It is presumed that this is the man listed as 'Banjo Patterson' but attempts to ascertain his Christian name through searching online Naval Records Cards has been unsuccessful as most are virtually illegible. I was also fortunate enough to speak to a veteran AIB WW2 Coast Watcher and, although he did not recognise the man in question, he suggested he may have been an 'AWA Radio Man'?

The original photos have been donated to the Museum of Australian Military Intelligence at Canungra but I have copies and Canungra would also accept any assistance that may be available to identify (inter alia) this RAN man.

Although we have a list of names, we know these men are not sitting in their named order but several of the men have now been identified. I have had the AWM Service Records searched but it is surprising how many files do not contain a photo?

I noticed that (by your 2016 Reunion notice) that you may still be active and I was wondering if you would be prepared to post a copy of the photo on line? The quality of the photo is quite good.

The photo was taken on Christmas Eve in 1944 and all of the AIF men were AIB support staff assigned to Nazdab/Lae at that time. We are not sure exactly where the photo was taken but my feeling is that it may have been taken in a secured area at Finschhafen? Possibly a temporary/transit tent within the Naval or RAAF Depot area?

The reason for this is that I understand there had been some problems with radios issued from the Lae QM Store (where my father was QM) and it is possible that these men were a working squad (under day to day control of WO1 Blacklock) and were testing portable radios from the store away from curious eyes?

I also feel that the mention of 'AIB Area Command' on the side of the box was just the 'exuberance of youth ready to party' because they were an isolated group well away from the view of senior officers at Lae.

The photos were taken by a RAAF photographer.

Again, my sincere thanks and the photo can be freely distributed amongst your members.

I also meant to enclose another clear photo of the elusive 'Banjo' (sitting far left). This was taken later during their Xmas celebrations and this board reads 'AIB New Guinea Xmas Eve 1944'.

Surely there must have been some reason to warrant two separately painted signs (during wartime) for a party of only thirteen men?

Thank you.

Bill Richards
16 Woorak Street
Phone 07 3269 0184

'Banjo' left foreground in photo 1 and far left in photo 2.


1. This year we will be holding our regional reunion at Lake Hume, Wodonga at the Boathaven Big4 holiday park 33 Boathaven Rd Ebden Vic 3619. It will be from Friday the 9th of September to Sunday 11th of September 2016. As in the past all of our party will receive a 10% discount on all cabins and sites. A number of people will arrive earlier and or depart later, please free to do so if you wish. We have set up our group as RANCBA with the park so be sure to mention RANCBA to receive your discount when placing your booking. This is also important so both the park and us can identify our group. The park is right beside Lake Hume which wraps around a large area of the sites and cabins. If you enjoy fishing, be sure to bring your rods. The park has excellent facilities, both sites and cabins. It has an excellent camp kitchen as well as a large fire pit close by.

2. As in the past, we will have a meet and greet on the Friday night at 6 pm with food provided. Hopefully a bus trip on the Saturday to Beechworth with a lunch venue to be advised. We will also visit surrounding landmarks. On Saturday evening we have booked the Wodonga RSL for dinner. We are enquiring with bus companies to transport us during the day as well as picking us up for dinner and returning us back to the park. This will be at a very reasonable cost. On Sunday we will conclude with our now famous breakfast, prepared by our now famous chefs. For the meet and greet and breakfast we shall have a small charge which I shall advise in advance. We will also advise the bus cost when known. There will be some interesting items for a raffle during the meet and greet.

3. We welcome any ex Naval people from the surrounding area to attend plus we would love to catch with as many as possible from the Canberra area. If you require further information regarding the Big4 park or to make your booking, please call them on 02 6020 6130. The email is

4. There will be further updates plus attendee names as we progress, but anybody that would like further information or other queries, please call me on 0418 524 067.

John White

Vale Ian James Timson R95175  (ex LSSIG)

It is my sad duty to inform you that Ian passed away at 7:45 this evening, 18 May, with his loving wife, Jan, at his bedside. Ian has been fighting his battle with the brain tumours for twelve years but has lost the war. He will be missed by many in the RAN Communications family. Another good one has crossed the bar way to early. Smooth sailing Timmo and rest in peace.

Frank Aldred
Sad news, Lest We Forget.


TIMSON, Ian James "Timmo"
Late of Woody Point.

Passed away 18th May, 2016. Aged 66 Years.  Cherished Husband of Jan, loving Son, Brother, Uncle, Dad, Pa, G'pa, B'pa, Shipmate and loyal Friend to many.

Family and Friends are invited to Ian's Celebration of Life, on Tuesday, 24th May, 2016, at 2 p. m. , in the Chapel of Great Northern Garden of Remembrance, Tallowwood Drive, Deception Bay.

Bright colours to be worn at Ian's request.

Many thanks
rank Aldred


From Geoff Bridger:
Very sad news indeed reading of the passing of Ian “Timmo” Timson. Shared some great times on the Derwent 1975 trip up top. Always reliable, a great guy, and a good laugh. Condolences to his family and friends. RIP old mate.

From Tony Froome:
Deeply saddened to hear of Timmo's passing. I served with him in HMAS Swan back in the early 80's when we did a couple of memorable trips Up Top. Timmo "San" as he was known was my running oppo. I'll always remember going ashore with him the last day before sailing from Honkers. I noticed something sticking out of the back pocket of his jeans and when I queried him he produced a wad of HK dollars that could have choked a horse and his Australian Passport. Sure enough, the next morning, fallen in for Procedure Alfa for departure the Chief Coxswain "Jingles" Irwin sneaks up behind me and whispers in my ear "Alright, where is he?". Of course I denied everything and suggested he might be sick ashore....Long story short, Timmo had a nice little holiday while we were at sea and appeared on the wharf when we reached Singas about a week later. He had a wicked sense of humour and was much liked by all the Comms rates on board. Didn't mind a cold beer on a hot day. A good bloke and good Communicator. RIP Mate.

From Geoff Worth:
So sorry to hear of the passing of Timmo. Had some good times together. Condolences to his family.

From Phil Butler:
I have only just read the news about Timmo. Such a shame that the ones full of life are taken so soon.  Tales abound about our young Mr Timson I am sure but just imagine what it was like sharing a cabin with Ian Timson, Bear Linton and Kim Kearney.  How we got through that without Timmo or Kim getting us locked up, is beyond me.

Great and happy memories. Our condolences to all of his family and friends.

Phil and Marion Butler

Ian Timson (ex LSSIG) in Sick Bay

Jan Timson has advised that her husband, ex bunting tosser, Ian Timson, is in the Wesley Hospital in Brisbane after a fall early Monday morning. They doing extensive tests to confirm the loss of mobility on the left side. Apart from that, as strange as it sounds, Ian is pain free, still laughing.

We are assuming that this is all related to the brain melanomas, but last hospital stint (April 11 to 15) tests MRI's, PET Scans, weren't conclusive. The hospital is working with the family to get Ian home with Jan, with all the aids, help, that is required to keep him safe and comfortable in his own environment. This is his and Jan’s wish.

I rang Ian this afternoon and he sounded in good spirits – not cranky yet but I know that he hates being laid up. I will try to visit Wednesday afternoon

I will keep you up to date as much as I can. Ian has his mobile with him – if you have his number give him a call.

Frank Aldred

Many thanks Frank, we hope Ian recovers and gets some quality time at home.

Update from Frank 16/5:
I visited Timmo on Saturday afternoon. He was in much better shape than when I saw him last Wednesday. Still gets quite tired but he is in good spirits. DVA are a great support and will be doing an assessment of his home today. I am happy to pass on any messages.

From Jen Barrett 17/5:
I've been to see Ian tonight and there is no good news. Jan has a wonderful support group with Ian's brothers and their wives together with Todd, Hailey, Brett & Megs..........


Gravesite - LCDR W.D. Hunter RN/RAN - An Australian Naval Pioneer & First OIC of Signals School.

Following received from Rhys Shobbrook.

We recently donated some items to the AWM, and I searched to see if they had been digitised when I came across your January 2015 newsletter which mentioned my Grandmother’s cousin Willie Hunter.

Link to Newsletter

On behalf of the family I’d like to pass on our appreciation to Jean Nysen for paying for Willie’s plaque, to Allan Moffatt & John Short for tending to his grave and to your organisation for helping to keep his memory alive.

We would like to send up something to help Alan and John get the cold drinks they deserve.

Here is the family photo of Willie that we donated to the AWM.

Here is a photo of my father wearing one of Willies uniforms my grandmother cut down for him (pictured with my Aunty Jean), which illustrates what a hero Willie was for my young father.

We also have a book from Willie’s childhood handed down to my father. In the book was an article on the game of lacrosse in Australia. My father started playing the game and 66 years later the family is still involved.

The purchasing of the plaque and the tending of the grave are selfless and kind acts.

Once again, thank you.



Vale CMDR Rod Withers RAN Retd


Today we lost one of our own with the passing of CMDR Rodney Withers RAN Retd from complications after a long and hard fought battle with Prostate Cancer.

Rod passed away peacefully this morning (Tues 3 May) at around 0930 in the company of those he loved most, his wife Jan and his extended family.

Rod had battled this insidious disease for six years and never gave an inch. He busied himself with his family, his business, RANCBA Vic, RANCBA Cruises and of course his pet, Regional Reunions. He attended all of these functions with a stoic indifference to his own health and pain, and always with an encouraging good word for those around him.

He has left a huge hole in many of our hearts. A true Officer and a Gentleman.

We have all had the pleasure of knowing him, enjoyed his company with a beer or two, and yes, loving him in our own ways.

Rest in peace ol' mate, with no more pain.

Smooth seas and a following wind, until we all meet again.

Frank Lawton


Thanks Frank, very sad news.  I will publish reflections and condolences as they come to hand.  RIP.










Follow this link for a funeral tribute to Rod from Frank Lawton & Gary Swanton.


From JJ & Norm Duscher:

Jan and family we are saddened to hear Rod has crossed the bar and wish to offer our sincerest condolences. You both have been a hardworking team for the ex navy personnel here in Victoria and Rods contribution will be sorely missed. Our friendship goes back 45 years to HMAS Coonawarra days and it was a pleasure to renew the connection when we moved to Melbourne a few years ago. God bless - RIP Rod much love JJ and Norm Duscher

From Bob & Judy Cody:
Deepest condolences to Jan and family for your loss. A great shipmate gone too early.
Bob & Judy Cody

From Royce Bell:
News I certainly did not want to hear. T8 of 1967 were good times, we were a good team. After PERTH and Vietnam we were at HARMAN together and Rod was to be best man at my wedding but his crash posting to COONAWARA Navcommsta Darwin shot that idea in the foot; it did however let him follow Jan to the north. My deepest condolences to Jan and her family in these terrible times. A loss deeply felt. A good one taken far too early.

A young Rod Withers & Royce Bell
3rd & 4th left.
T8 of 1967
Part of the CERBERUS 67 Sailing Team.

From Doug Mortimer:
Cud u pse pass on my condolences to Jan.  I also was a member of T8/67.
With sorrow.
Doug Mortimer

From Doc Watson:
I have many good memories of Rodney from 68 onwards.
Deepest condolences to Jan and family. We are thinking of you at this time.
Doc & Michelle Watson

From Keghead Weaver:
Very sorry to hear of the passing of one of our stalwarts.  Rod will be sadly missed by all who had had the good fortune to meet him. I know I will. Please convey sincerest condolences to the family from myself and my wife personally and from the committee and members of the ACT Chapter.

Lest we forget
Ken (Keghead) Weaver


Sick Bay Update on Rod Withers

Follow this link for previous updates

Sir Rodney had a bit of a turn on ANZAC Day with lack of strength in his legs and was taken back and re-admitted to the Peninsula Hospital.

They felt there was nothing more that they could do for him, so the next day he was transferred to Peninsula Health, Palliative care unit, where he remains as of this morning.

Peninsula Health Palliative are in essence ensuring that he is comfortable and managing his pain. He is in and out of consciousness, but when he is awake, he is giving a bit of cheek to those around him, which I'd love to say is a good sign. He certainly is not giving in to this Cancer.

Obviously phone calls to Rod are no longer an option but Jan will keep everyone updated via Social media. Please be patient and she will certainly get around to calling well wishers back.

Jan is holding up much better than I would have expected and has Tamara, Shane, Ali and their families with her for support.

I believe that I speak for all of us when I say that our prayers and best wishes are offered to Rod and Jan and their family.

Frank Lawton

Sick Bay Update - Checkers Aldridge

Letting you know that Checkers Aldridge (ex LRO) is back in hospital with diabetes related problems.  He has now lost 2 toes on his left foot.   He will be in hospital for some time I suspect.

He is in St George Private Hospital here in Sydney (room 405) and has a bedside phone number 02 85945705 if anyone wishes to get in contact with him

I am going out to see him tomorrow and will update you when I return.

Gympie Inall

Update from Gympie 09 May

Went to see Checkers last Monday 2/5/16.  He is in good spirits and looking to go to rehab this week, most likely Tuesday 10th if the healing process is going according to plan (his plan I think ).

It is a bit up in the air as I don’t see how having half of your foot (big toe and next toe taken back half way down the foot) is going to heal in a couple of weeks, especially with his whole leg suffering from the ravages of diabetes. 

Will keep you posted on any developments as they occur. 



Update from Gympie 14 May:

They have moved him to the Waratah Private hospital , 31 Dora St Hurstville, for further treatment and rehab. Telephone number 95980000 and ask for him.
Is comfortable and seems happy enough considering the circumstances.

Update from Gympie 28 May:
Just a quick update on Checkers.   He is out of hospital and back in the nursing home at Leigh Place, Roselands which is his home these days. I can only assume that they will carry on his rehab and look after dressing his foot.
He appears to be in good spirits.


Reunion Update - Accommodation in Canberra

RANCBA members attending the National Reunion in Canberra this November are advised that the reunion is being held at the same time as Parliament is sitting and a major football (soccer) promotion/game is being held in Canberra on 11th.

The Reunion Committee feels that accommodation in Canberra maybe stretched and if you are attending the National Reunion early bookings are advised.

Cheers and see you in November.

Ken (Taffy) Eynon
RANCBA ACT Chapter Reunion Team

April 2016 Entries

RANCBA Cruise No 3 - Operation F1J1 August 2017

Nokka White has asked for the following to be published on the RANCBA website.  An update on the cruise will be published in approx one week's time.


1. Planning

Planning for cruise No 3 has been underway since we returned from the last cruise. I can now advise details of OperationF1J1. The departure date is 21st August 2017 from Sydney and returning to Sydney on 2nd September. I have added the Itinerary for the cruise to this update and you need to note that day 4 is different to that in the current cruise book. The port is Noumea not Mare Island.  There is lots of information in this notification so if anybody needs any clarification regarding anything please call me Nokka on 0418 524 067 or Kath Williams at Helloworld Travel Rowville on 03 9764 8487.

2. Placing Bookings

On the previous cruise some people booked with other travel agents. To receive all of the group benefits, bookings need to be placed with Helloworld Travel Rowville - Kath Williams on the above number as other agents will not transfer the bookings.

3. Cruise Details

The cruise is with Carnival and is a 12 day trip (the itinerary is further in this information). Departure is from Sydney on 21st August 2017 and returns to Sydney on 2nd September 2017. Please note again day 4 is Noumea not Mare Island as in the current Carnival booklet. You will also see the pricing (From) for each type of Cabin for twin
and Quad share.

4. Current group benefits

The following onboard credits are applicable at the moment, but 2 of them finish on the 21st of April 2016.

A. Splash & Splurge - An onboard credit of $300 per Balcony cabin or Suite. For an exterior or interior cabin the onboard credit is $200 per cabin. We are not sure if this special will be repeated for those that miss out, but we have been told it may happen again.

B. Cruise week special - This special will be repeated twice more prior to departure - 1 grab only for those that miss the first bite. Please ring Kath at Helloworld on 03 9764 8487 for further clarification C. A select sailing onboard credit of $50 per person is also available to us all for the entire booking period.

D. The ex Defence credit is also available to all ex servicemen, Kath needs prove of service information, this credit is $100 per person with a maximum of 2 per cabin.

E. An onboard free berths credit at 1 free berth for every 16 guest bookings. This is less Port charges and all taxes. This will be amortised onto each persons onboard cruise card on joining the ship (within 3 days). Kath will be onboard again and she will make sure this happens as usual, plus any other queries. This credit is up to a maximum of 8 free berths.

5. Costing changes

This is a rare win and is as follows - If the cruise line brings out further discounted fares for any type of cabin Kath is allowed to change any group members booking to the cheaper fare. Kath will then advise group members that receive this reduction to their booking.

6. Deposits and Cancellations

The deposit required to secure a berth is another win and is only $125 per person for all cabin types. The balance of payments is not required until the 1st June 2017. Cancellations with a full refund may be made up until 8 months (Christmas) prior to. We think this is very fair and gives everybody plenty of time to be organised, but if needed cancel with a full refund.

7. Queries
Please feel free to contact me John White (Nokka) on 0418 524 067 or Kath during Business hours on 03 9764 8487 for any queries large or small.

8. Cruise Updates.

There will be further updates as other information becomes available. The company Is being very flexible with us and we feel this could be the best cruise so far. They are being very helpful with our group dining and a daily meet and greet area. It also looks like they will run off our daily orders from a USB stick at no coast. I shall include an updated cruise list for everybody's interest in the cruise updates. Please ring Kath ASAP to book so that you don't miss out on any of the credits on offer. There is plenty of time to opt out later if you cannot join us on this cruise with no loss of money.

9. Itinerary

Day 1 Embark Sydney
Days 2 & 3. Fun days at sea
Day 4. Noumea New Caledonia
Day 5. Mystery Island Vanuatu
Day 6. Fun day at sea
Day 7. Suva. Fiji
Day 8. Port Denarau Fiji
Day 9. Fun day at sea
Day 10. Isle of Pines. New Caledonia
Day 11 & 12. Fun days at sea
Day 13. Sydney. Disembark




Visits to ANMM

Keghead Weaver passes on the following from the HMAS VAMPIRE Association.

"Any member travelling to Sydney or for any member who resides in Sydney we have some complimentary passes (expiring 2017) to the Australian National Maritime Museum (ANMM) to visit the Museum and ships and from May onwards, we will have a corporate card which entitles anyone free admission to the Museum and ships.

Please feel free to contact us if you are visiting Sydney and want to look over “The Bat”."

Signed by Sandra Sherwell and the email is 

Cheers Keghead


During the 100th Anniversary of WWI, 2014 – 2018, the Brisbane Anzac Day Parade will commence at 0930 hrs.

the 1st half hour will be taken up with re enactments groups and banners commemorating all conflicts from Boer War through to Afghanistan.  

At approximately 1000 hrs, the units will step off with RAAF leading, followed by Navy, then Army.

All Communicators interested in attending and marching behind the Banners for RANCBA(Q) and 70th Anniversary of RANCBA, are welcome to meet up in William Street from 0900 hrs onwards.

Following the Parade, feel free to join us at the Rendezvous in George Street for drinks and eats.

Further information contact Alan or Sonja 07 3397 2663 or 0412 750 372

Many thanks
Sonja Hellier



The RANCBA-ACT will be marching in Canberra on Anzac Day.

Your march leader will be Dave Jeffrey.

Members usually meet at the Navy Memorial – form up between 1000-1030 – march commences at 1040 – our position is number 31 this year.

Look for our banner, wear your name badge and please remember to turn you mobile off.

We are holding an after-march function at the Canberra Bowling Club, Hobart Ave, Forrest. Kick off at 1230 approx.

Please pass this email onto other communicators/ex-communicators, they will be very welcome at the after-march function.

Peter Guy

Paul Harris Seeking Old Shipmates

I have pulled your address off the communicators web site, hope you don't mind. I am trying to locate two old mates of mine, both ex communicators - Ken Cox and Mick Street.

I joined up with them at HMAS Leeuwin in 1961.  Haven't seen Ken since 1961, served with Mick in Teal 1964/,65.

Yours Aye

Paul Harris
ex Seaman Gunner

If anyone can assist please pass it on.  I haven't heard of Ken or Mick for many years.



My father, Norm Mills, now 90 years young, is compiling some information on his time in the Navy for one of his grandsons, and is interested in finding an article written by John O'Connell regarding the HMAS Moresby.

Dad was a sparky on the Moresby (survey sloop & wartime escort) in 1945 and was there during the surrender at Timor. The Article he is specifically keen to find is in the Railways Institute Magazine of NSW Feb 1980 edition, which contains part of John O'Connell's diary as a RAN sailor during the surrender (apparently originally published by the Naval Historical Society of Australia).

I would be grateful if someone could email me this article which (I believe) contains information about the mutiny my father mentions during his time on the Moresby.

Anything else applicable would be gratefully appreciated.

Yours Sincerely

I have pointed Wendy to the Naval Historical Society website, but she may have already been down this track.  If anyone can assist please let me know.

Royce Bell has pointed Wendy to the Reports of Proceedings at the AWM, link provided. Royce also suggests Wikipedia, link provided below. I will pass this information on to Wendy.

Sandy McNab suggests Wendy purchase John O'Connell's book "HMAS MORESBY 1925-1946".  He provides links to a few biblio websites which have this paperback book available for sale.  Sandy says, "I am not sure if this is the book or extracts from it which Wendy was seeking.  It is also available at quite a few libraries if she wishes to search it."

HMAS Moresby 1925-1946 (Paperback) by John O'Connell (Author)


Vale Robert Desmond Bergin R29521 (ex Teleg)

David MacLean has passed on the sad news that Bob 'Blue' Bergin passed  away early a.m. Tuesday 05 April from a stroke (in Adelaide). He was 88 years old.

From the Archives:
Robert Desmond Bergin R29521.  DOB 08.01.1928. Joined RAN 12.03.1946, DEE 30.06.1959.  Postings: CERBERUS, HARMAN, TARANGAU, WARRAMUNGA, MELVILLE, HARMAN, KOOKABURRA, QUEENBOROUGH, KIMBLA.

May he RIP. Lest we Forget.

     Bob & Joan Bergin 1999

From Shorty Moffatt:
Robert 'Bob' – 'Blue 'Bergin
I first met Bob back in end of 1958 early 1959 and he was at that time a two badge Sparker and was a great hand. Over the years we corresponded many times and when I would go to see the In-laws in Adelaide, always took the time to give him a phone call. Nothing was any problem , and we used to laugh about being a Sparker and both of us being drafted at different times to the Mighty Warship HMAS KIMBLA/VLNK.

He will be sadly missed by all that knew or served with him.
Lest We Forget.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM



An invite to all Serving and Ex Serving Navy Communicators, to attend the following on the 25th April here in Sydney

1. Wreath Laying . Our first Services is the Wreath Laying Service at 0740am in memory of those who have Paid the Supreme Sacrifice and those that have gone before us. If attending, please muster at the corner of Pitt and Martin Place at 0730am, so that we can March on to the Cenotaph at our given time. Here, a Serving sailor (m/f) in uniform of the day, will be invited to be our Wreath Layer.

2. ANZAC Day March. We shall be taking pat in the ANZAC Day March and for this, please start to muster in Castlereagh Street in the Post WW II RAN at 0900am. Our Banner will be displayed but there will be Marshals who will direct you should need assistance. Those in wheel chairs are more than welcome, but with one carer only The RAN WWII will be led by RADM Rothesay Swan AO CBE RAN Rtd and Post WWII RAN by RADM Chris Oxenbould AO RAN Rtd.

3. Reunion. On completion of the March, we will be holding our Reunion at the Zetland Hotel, Green Square . It is one station from Central on the Airport Line. Here all are invited and this includes partners and families. All costs for drinks and eats are at your own responsibility. Call it stumps when ever you wish. . Please come along, renew old friendships with shipmates and start new friendships.

Dress as applicable for this day, Medals were Awarded are to be worn.

Any questions/queries contact me on or phone 02 9631 8068.

Allan Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

Bob Stevens & The Ranch

Ex LSSIG from May 1971 to Feb 82 R110830 joined up as A/R from Perth full name is Robert James STEVENS

Family are putting together a bit of a history to hand down to grandchildren and have problems with info for period 1971 between April and November.

We are using an old diary and in it there is reference to THE RANCH.

We believe it relates to the period when the US military were visiting Sydney for there R and R from Vietnam and THE RANCH may have been some type of liquor outlet in Kings Cross or surrounding suburbs or even the central business area of Sydney.

It would appear the visiting Americans used the location to meet local woman to go to other nightspots and restaurants.  It may have just been the name of a bar in one of the establishments.

All our efforts to identify the location and premise have been unsuccessful, knowing what my our ex shipmates were like in those times I am sure someone will know of the place.

Are you able to help us using QSO?

Would be appreciated as living in Perth has made my research a little difficult.

Bob STEVENS and family.

I can't help Bob, unless it was another name for the Texas Tavern!  Can anyone help?

CMDR Rod (Sir Rodney) Withers in Sickbay again.

Good morning all. Just a quick note to bring you all up to speed on Rod's health issues to date.

After battling with Prostate Cancer for the past six years, Rod was diagnosed with secondary Cancer of the right shoulder around April 2015, which was being treated with Radiation and Chemotherapy.

Following the RANCBA TASMANEX 2016 Cruise earlier this year, which Rod handled relatively well, he began experiencing severe headaches around February 2016.

This was subsequently diagnosed as a secondary Brain Tumour and again is being treated with Radiation. The prognosis is, that whilst "not real flash", it has been detected early and therefore treatable at this time. (Maybe this is doctor speak, for having a bet each way)

Rod is currently in the Peninsula Private hospital and is receiving his treatment at the Frankston Private hospital which Jan drives him to daily.

When not drowsy from all of the chemicals that they are pumping into him, he remains positive and up-beat. Notwithstanding being very tired constantly.

Updates can be obtained from Jan on 03 9772 7775 for the present, but if it gets too much for her, I would then ask that all enquiries come through me, to help Jan get through this ordeal. Which I'm sure you will all understand.

Like myself, I'm sure your thoughts and prayers are with Sir Rodney as he begins yet another battle.

Frank Lawton

Thanks for keeping us up to date Frank.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to Rod and Jan.  We all hope for a positive outcome,  if anyone can beat this, Rod can.

Sir Rodney has had a couple of good positive days this weekend. One more radiation treatment to go and then the results from his oncologist. He is extremely positive.

Rod & Frank April 2016


The Commemoration Service for these 2 Battles was held at the Cenotaph. Martin Place, Sydney on Friday 1st April commencing at 11.00am.

Commander Ken Swain AM RAN Rtd, carried out the duty of the MC and did a very good job.

Senior Chaplain Duncan Besci conducted the Service, the Catafalque Party was provided by HMAS KUTTABUL and music by the Sydney Detachment of the RAN Band under the Baton of the Bandmaster, Lieut. Mathew Klohs RAN and accompanied by LS Tracey Kennedy who lead the singing and all would agree, she has a wonderful voice.

Guest of Honour and Speaker was Commodore Richard Powell OBE MA MSc Royal Navy, current British Defence and Naval Advisor, Canberra ACT. Commodore Powell gave the speech detailing the loss of many good men and ships in the two Battles against the Imperial Japanese Navy and Air Force in February and May respectively. However, these two events stopped the Japanese from advancing down to Australia.

Men and ships from the Royal Netherlands Navy, Royal Australian Navy, Royal Navy, United States Navy, Royal Indian Navy, Merchant Navy Tankers (all 3 lost) and the Orion Troop Ship were involved in the Battle of the Java Sea and area in February 1942.

United States Navy and Royal Australian Navy were all involved in the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942

Representatives from the Netherlands, United States, United Kingdome Governments, families of survivors, RADM Guy Griffiths AO DSC DSC RAN Rtd, Patron the Battle of the Java Sea and Coral Sea Committee, RADM Rothesay Swan AO CBE RAN Rtd, RADM Tony Horton AO RAN Rtd, Ms Jennifer Collins Deputy Commissioner of DVA ACT/NSW. The Hon David Elliott MP and the Hon Lynda Coltz MLC were among the local dignitaries, also Serving Defence Personnel and Presidents and Representatives of Ex Service Organisations.

22 Wreaths were Laid and Relatives were invited to place their own Remembrance and here I had the honour of representing the RANCBA

We owe a great debt to our Sailors.

Lest we Forget

Mrs Liz Watts

Janet & Greg 'Stretch' Beck Relocation

Just letting you know our change of email address for promulgation on the RANCBA website if you don’t mind..

We have moved from Canberra and now reside in a new retirement village at Fern Bay just north of Stockton, Newcastle.

Our new address is:

Trust you are all well.  Apart from getting over the traumas of shifting and downsizing we are OK this end.

Kind regards
Janet and Greg (Stretch) Beck


Bravo Zulu: Honours and Awards to Australian Naval People 1900-2014

Volume 1, 1900-1974 Now on Sale

Between 1900 and 2014 nearly 3,800 Australian naval people received honours and awards for their efforts, courage, sacrifice and service to the nation. Whether earning a George Cross for defusing mines during the World War II ‘Blitz’ of the UK, an American Silver Star for flying helicopters into intense enemy fire in Vietnam, or a Conspicuous Service Medal for quietly ‘just getting the job done’, these are the stories of the men and women who have been recognised for their service to the Royal Australian Navy. Some give an insight into the daily running of our Navy. Others recalling inspiring feats of courage under fire or bravery in risking their own lives in saving others, on and off duty.

For the past seven years Ian Pfennigwerth and a team of dedicated volunteer researchers have explored the background of these honours and awards – Imperial, Australian, and foreign. The outcome is a book crafted so that even those with no knowledge of things naval will appreciate the significance of each award while becoming acquainted with the history of Australia’s naval forces - and enjoying a good read.

The stories will be published in two volumes, with the first to be released in August 2016. Volume 1 covers the period 1900 to 1974 and is an 800 page book with 24 maps and 250 illustrations. It traces, through the recipients’ stories, the formation and development of the RAN, its fortunes during World War I, its resurrection from the depths of the Depression, and its fine fighting record during World War II. Post-war the stories tell of our Navy’s growth toward independence, the exploits of its men in Korea, Malaysia, Indonesian Confrontation and Vietnam, and its development of ships and weapons system like the famous Ikara anti-submarine missile. There are also stories about the loss of Voyager and of spectacular feats in naval flying and diving.

Volume 1 comes in two editions; the hardcover has retail price of $70 and the paperback will sell at $60. Postage will be $13.50 for domestic purchasers. Overseas postage rates depend on the purchaser’s address.

For those who wish to order the book for earlier delivery, until 30 June 2016 the hardcover edition is offered at an attractive $60, and the paperback at $50. These copies of Bravo Zulu Volume 1 will be delivered in advance of the official launch and will be inscribed by Ian Pfennigwerth if so desired. Orders can be placed on Ian’s Website at

Volume 2, covering honours and awards to December 2014, will appear in early 2017.



RANCBA NSW Direct Debit

To all Member of the RANCBA NSW Chapter who pay direct debit the following is the correct details

Account Name Communications Branch
Bank CBA
BSB 062009
Account Number 00907855

I had typed the BSB number incorrect – was having cataract surgery done and typed one eyed !!!  Also for what it is worth, my total right hip operation carried out on 23rd March was a success and all went well and was home in 7 days.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW Chapter


March 2016 Entries

Vale Norman Albert Old R52563 (ex RO)

Trevor Percival advises "It is with sadness that I advise fellow communicators that my friend Norm Old ex Radio Operator crossed the bar last night and will be at peace after suffering from prostrate cancer. Funeral to be held from Traditional Funerals, 11.30 am next Monday 4th April at 17 Anzac Avenue, Redcliffe, Qld."

From the Archives:

Norman Albert Old R52563, DOB 4.8.1938, Joined RAN 23.11.1956.  Postings - CERBERUS, MELBOURNE, HARMAN, MELBOURNE, WARREGO, HARMAN.  DEE 23.11.1962.  ORDTEL 23.5.57, ORDRO 5.8.58, RO 30.10.58.

Thanks Trevor, sad news.  May he now RIP.


Vale Donald Roderick Fraser 23843 (ex WWII SIG)

The death notice for Don Fraser of Watermans Bay has been passed on by the RANCBA WA. Funeral is scheduled for Pinnaroo East Chapel 1.30 pm on Tuesday 15th March.

From the Archives:
FRASER, Donald Roderick 23483.  DOB 21 September 1920, Joined RAN 14.08.1939, Postings CERBERUS, CANBERRA, TOOWOOMBA, TORRENS, MORETON, MELVILLE. Rated Ord SIG 1939, SIG 1940. Discharged 4 September 1946.

Lest We Forget


Brisbane 7th March Communicators get together at the Grand Central Hotel:

Attendees L to R:  Roger Garrett, Kev Ruwoldt, Bas Cleary, Gus Dodds, Tackers Miles, Trev Percival, John Horton, Graham Burns (Ex RP) - Bob Simpson had to depart early.

Adrift:  Pedlar Palmer, Noel Chidgey, Jim Eagles.

Photo by Don Ruwoldt.


Everyone waiting for John Horton to catch up with his beer! It never used to be like that back in Quiberon days ha ha.
Jim Anderson

Have you ever seen such a crew??? Most sailors of today would run a long way to get away from this lot (especially the girls). Hope the ‘Red Caps’ didn’t get you!!!


Update on Steve McQueen

This June 23rd marks the 30th anniversary of our brother James (Steve) McQueen being lost at sea. His mysterious disappearance under such bizarre circumstances has had a profound and long-lasting affect on our family. To this day we have not been able to find out anything that might explain his demise, despite trying to obtain information through the Freedom of Information Act. We all believe that some sort of "foul play" was involved and still take no comfort from the Coroner's Inquest at the time.

Thanks to all who shared memories of Steve with us. Any further information can be sent to

Best regards on behalf of James' siblings - Jacki, John, Jan, Jill and Jeraldine

Jill McGregor

As a follow up to post on Steve McQueen by Jillian, have attached photo of the memorial note from the HMAS Coonawarra service that was held shortly after the tragic loss of a great man and shipmate. He was such a unique personality that touched all who knew him, I still have the original verse he put together that described a best forgotten fishing trip and shark encounter out of Narooma (Murgy and TerryG), he was such a talent, good mate gone too soon.

Terry Gleeson
WORSS 67 - 86


February 2016 Entries


Yesterday, 28th February the two Services were held at the Chapel, Garden Island. Normally, this Service commences at 10.00 am, but HMAS MELBOURNE would be coming alongside at FBE after completing a 6 month deployment in the Middle East. Sydney harbour turned on a beautiful day, and the partners, family and friends to meet the home coming sailors could not have had a better day.

The Service at the Chapel commenced at 11.00 am and was conducted by Chaplain Thi Lam RAN , with music by a section of the RAN Band, Sydney Detachment . On Welcoming us all, we were asked to stand, and the Australian White Ensign was paraded into the Chapel and presented to the Chaplain, and draped over the altar.  The was followed by the Hymn , Amazing Grace and here the singer from the RAN Band was very good, but unfortunately I did not get her name, and for this, I do apologise. Petty Officer Tony Mills Read the Bible Reading 1 Corinthians 12 Verses 4-11, and then the Reflections and the Dedication of Plaques.

These included AB William Butler, CEA Harold Elliot. SA Eric Harvey, AB George Heywood, AB Lawrence Leach, AB Pat Middenway, PO Geoffrey Parker, LRO Kerry Rorison, Shipwright William Rorison.  It was only when reading the Order of Service that a Plaque would be Dedicated for the late EX LRO Kerry Rorison, who I had served with, but also when his sister came forward and spoke about Kerry on behalf of the family, she also had to stay and follow on where she also spoke on behalf of her late father Shipwright William Rorison.

This is a very moving part of the Service and my only regret, that no record kept of these speeches by family, ex shipmates.

The Service for HMAS PERTH followed , and here Mr Bruce McGovern came forward and read most moving Poem called HMAS PERTH. Bruce was serving aboard HMAS PERTH when it was sunk in action in the Battle of Sunda Strait in 1942 and he became POW under the Japanese on the infamous Burma-Thailand Railway.  On completion , the ODE was Recited by Mr Gordon Steele OAM who had served on HMAS PERTH I during WW II, that was followed by the Last Post, a Minutes Silence then Reveille. The Ceremonial Party slow Marched in and the AWE was presented to the Petty Officer and while all standing the Australian National Anthem played with all and I would say all singing. A Prayer for the Navy and the Blessing completed the Service.

All where then invited to the Historical Bldg where Morning Tea is provided by the Federations of Naval Ships Assn (FNSA) and the Royal Australian Navy Communications Branch Assn (RANCBA). This is a purely voluntary job, and all in attendance have advised how appreciated it is. Normally we have at l0 – 12 volunteers, most being Communicators, but yesterday it fell to Ken & June Swain, Liz Watts, Helen & Shorty Moffatt.  Unfortunately Ray & Sharon Mundy, Ric & Jan Easom, Diana Avent (all ex Communicators ) were attending the Ex WRANS Reunion in Melbourne, Andy & Jan Mills had a prior commitment and Phillip & Mary (Secretary of the FNSA) had o/seas visitors that day.

Anyway we did us 'right proud' but I would have to say, I was very dubious of how this part of the Service would be as the numbers attending were expected to be about 90 and with only 5 of us doing all this job. It was an outstanding success, and here also I had the great pleasure of meeting the sister's of the late Ex LRO Kerry Rorison. When I said that the last time I had seen Kerry had been at the National RANCBA Reunion in SA, and along with Peter Davey, Peter Baggott, Jack Bawden, Brian Gray etc, we took turns to push Kerry as he was now heavily committed to a wheel chair, and on completion of the March, as he would be unable to attend the Luncheon as he had to return to the Nursing Home for medication etc, we managed to have a drink with him.  Sadly, he passed away not long after , but he had advised his sister about the ex sailors (communicators) who had pushed him that day and this was to be one of his last memories.  She was so proud of what we had done for him and to pass on to all concerned her and the families many thanks.

This is what being part of an Association when you pay off, your friendship and memories continue long after you finished your Naval engagement.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

Vale Fred Goddard R62262 - ex CPORS

Ken Eynon has just looked at Facebook and is sad to report this post from Fred Goddard's son Darren.

"Another one of my heroes gone, after an almost three year battle with cancer dad (Fred Goddard) passed away this morning. Rest In Peace dad, love you forever."

Sad news, Lest We Forget.  See entry below for more detail on Fred's battle.  Fred was one of nature's gentlemen and he will be sadly missed by family and friends.  He fought the good fight and amazed everyone with his strength of mind and character.  May he rest in peace.

I will publish more information as it comes to hand over the coming days.

From the Archives:
Frederick John Henry Goddard.  DOB 29 May 1945, Joined RAN 30 June 1963, Postings - CERBERUS 63-64, YARRA 64-66, HARMAN 66-68, CURLEW 68-69, MELBOURNE 69-?  (Records closed off in 1970 and transferred to EDP).  Promotions - Rct (CO) 30.6.63, ORO 29.10.63, RO 25.10.65.

From Ron 'Nullarbor' Baker:
Hoping you can find room for the attached photo, taken about a year before Fred Goddard was diagnosed, and the nightmare began. I prefer to remember Fred as he was then, rather than later, when the ravages of the disease took hold. We were close friends for over 50 years, and I'm not ashamed to say that I loved the man. Unfortunately, because of my own ongoing chemotherapy treatment, I won't be able to attend his funeral. I am confident, though, that there will be a good representation of Communicators and others on the day.

Ron Baker & Fred Goddard

From Ken Eynon:
I attended the service for Fred Goddard at the Canberra Crematorium on the afternoon of Thursday 3rd March.

It was a full house with a lot of Fred's old shipmates in attendance, along with family and friends. A beautiful and touching service was conducted by a civil celebrant. I did not know that Fred had served in the RAN for 22 years. He started work as a civie in the Navy Office MSO the day after his discharge from the RAN in 1984. He worked in this office (MSO/Commcen) through its various name changes until his retirement. This would have given Fred a period of over 40 years service, in the Defence Communications Organization.

The Poppy Ceremony was conducted by Fred's daughter Julie's father-in-law Paul Cooke (Cookie) ex RAAF and a very good mate of Fred's. It was beautifully done and I am sure as Fred looked down on us he was smiling.

During the service there was a good serving of 1960's music that Fred loved and a wonderful visual presentation, featuring many shipmates.

I never actually worked in the same area or alongside Fred. I lived next to him in Navy dwellings on two occasions, and he came into the MSO at Navy Office shortly after I left. As I have said before Fred epitomized what I saw as a typical sailor. He would do anything for you, and he was a laugh a minute.

RIP Fredrick John Henry Goddard 29 May 1945 – 27 February 2016

Ken (Taffy) Eynon


Cyclone Tracy - Kev Ruwoldt's Story

I wrote a story of my experience of Cyclone Tracy after watching the 40th Anniversary aired on the ABC. My story has been accepted and published in a book called Tracy Survivors which I have just received. Thinking about it now, it probably affected a lot of Former Communicators and the Crews from both HMAS Melville/Coonawarra, also the Officers and Crews of the 11 Ships that helped the people of Darwin 1974/75. Have attached a copy for you to peruse and decide if it is worth airing on the RANCB site.

Kev Ruwoldt
Follow this link for Kev's story, also accessible from the MSO page.

Hi Kev,
A very informative story of your experiences with attention to detail. You wrote as if it had happened recently and not 42 years ago. I can't remember what happened last week let alone 40 years ago. My wife (Kaye) and I had a week in Darwin in March 2015 after an absence of 51 years – posted to “Coonawarra” in February 1964 for 12 months. The accommodation was a huge improvement on the “chook pens” in 1960. I expected to see lots of changes during the 2015 visit but was virtually overwhelmed by the amount of change that has gone on.
One thing I had forgotten was how hot and sticky it can be in the Wet Season. Hope to catch up at Reunion.
Kev Mongan

BZ on the “Tracey” story mate. I was in DCA Canberra when ‘she’ hit and remember the met bloke there saying “the wind reading from Darwin has just gone off the scale!!”  Served in Coonawarra in 1959 til Pharoah gave me the option of a Petty Officer course in Cerberus or an exchange draft with “Dusty Miller” on “Emu”. I, like a fool, took the latter. Should’ve taken the P/O’s course. Oh what the future ‘might have been’?? Like Kevin, I don’t think I could handle the humidity in Darwin now, like we use to!! Still, we ‘used’ a lot of “Black Duck” to help relieve it, didn’t we??.
Keghead Weaver


Fred Goddard in Sick Bay (ex CPORS R62262)

I see nothing on QSO about Fred Goddard ex LRO.  His son Darren posted the article below that I have in quotes on Facebook yesterday and I see another post that Fred has gone into Palliative Care today, Fred has a Melanoma and has not been well for a few months now. I am sure more of Fred's era are on email and internet and not Facebook. I am happy to repost to Facebook any message old shipmates may like to send.
Ken (Taffy) Eynon


Not looking for sympathy, not posting this for me, but not sure how to go about this any other way (short of hacking his account).

So, friends of Fred Goddard, I'm sorry to say but he is in a very poor way and in all likelihood it won't be long until he won't be able to acknowledge any comments. I hope tagging him in this post will provide his friends with an opportunity to say something, if they wish, before he goes. Julie Scerri, Samantha Goddard and I will pass on any messages.

As to my mates, I'll more than appreciate your support when it's due, but it's not at the moment so no need to make this post about anyone but my dad, I'm just trying to give an opportunity to my old mans mates to say their piece while he's still able to appreciate their love/support. I loves ya all though, not meaning to be rude just it's about dad n mum right now. Thanks for all.


I agree with Ken that a lot of Fred's ex Navy mates follow this website rather than social media.  I will pass on any updates about Fred and with your help we can start putting together the record of his Navy time.  I'm pretty sure he was promoted through to CPORS and perhaps further - if anyone can fill in the blanks it will certainly be helpful to Darren in the future.  Like many of you I was aware of Fred's battle but respected his wish to keep his postings on social media.  Our thoughts and best wishes go out to Fred and his family, we will be thinking of you in the days ahead. Many thanks to Ken Eynon for his offer to keep the old brigade informed by reposting messages to Facebook.

From Shorty Moffatt:
I am one of the oldies, and not into Facebook etc. I rely on normal email and should that fall over, have my old morse key handy. But, saying all that, I had no idea about the illness of Fred and for this, I do apologise. Please pass on my best wishes and my sincere thoughts are with him and his family as we go back a long way.  Where ever possible, keep me informed.
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt

From Ron 'Nullarbor' Baker:
Fred and I shared a few postings together (Watson Port War Signal Station 1964/5..Harman 66/68..Melbourne 68/69...Cerberus Comms School..71/72). Fred was best man when I married Wendy Wilson..he had previously married her best friend, Pat Thurston. My current wife, Jenne and I called in to see Fred and Pat the day after Boxing Day. It was a damn shame to see my old drinking and Rugby-playing mate in such a state of disrepair, though he was quite lucid. Our best wishes to Pat, Darren and Julie-Ann and their families.

From John Pummell:
Along with Ned Kelly, Fred and I were the LRO'S onboard Vendetta in 1976/77 at Williamstown Dockyard. Although he appeared laid back with a wicked sense of humour - he certainly kept the young RO's on their toes and got the best out of them. I certainly appreciated his support last year during my fight with cancer - his positive approach was truly remarkable. My prayers are with you and your family at this difficult time - may you enjoy the fair winds and calm seas you deserve.
John Pummell

From Terry Crane:
Fred, as you know, I was one of the young ROs that you kept 'on their toes' on Vendetta. You taught me so much about being a sparker, and also a bit about running ashore. I apologise for the grief that Rollo, Douglas and I (and others) caused you. My thoughts are with you and your family.
Terry Crane


HMAS Melbourne/HMNZS Waikato

To Whom it May Concern, I have just found this site and noticed nothing has been said about the incident which occurred in 1979 just before I was transferred to the HMAS Brisbane for 1 year and then to pay off at HMAS Moreton. 

The incident was about a very close call between the above carrier and destroyer, we were on watch one night (02.30am) on the flagdeck of the Melbourne with 8 ships in company, all in complete darken ship (no nav lights) and no electronic transmissions supposedly steaming the same course, when my signalman Phillips noticed something he could not I.D. to me. I quickly checked through my bino's and we had a destroyer 'Waikato' heading straight for our midships at about 400/500 yards out.  After notifying the bridge I ordered the starboard side of the carrier to be illuminated by 10 inch signal/search light forward and aft, the 'Waikato' carried out an emergency turn to starboard, ran parallel beside us for and short time during the turn but missed us by mere metres.  I could have hit her with a rock and we were looking down at the bridge staff out on the port side wing.

Commodore Dave Martin was skipper at the time and was out on the bridge wing after the report of the closing ship. I was on the forward 10 inch light illuminating the bow and flight deck of the carrier and I put Phillips on the aft 10 inch light to show the stern section. Both ships had a lot of men on them and things could have been a lot different. If you can do a bit of digging around for me to see what reports might have been completed and sent in it would be appreciated as all I got out of CDRE Martin was 'that was quick thinking'. I kinda think it was one of those moments in a signalman's life that could possibly be listed as 'one of those moments'.

Kev Leutton
If anyone has anything to add on this incident please do, it is a timely reminder with the VOYAGER anniversary that the picture can change very quickly when maneuvering in close company at night.

From Sandy McNab:
I Googled HMAS Melbourne – Report of Proceedings 1979 and it took me to  which I opened and then clicked onto “Download 63 Pages PDF 12.3MB” which took me to
which, somewhere amongst all those pages, may lead to mention of the mentioned Melbourne – Waikaito incident.

Kev Leutton may find his answer there. Best I can do.


HMAS VOYAGER Memorial Service – 13th February 2016

In memory of those Communicators that I had known or served with and also for all, regardless of Branch or Rate that survived the fatal collision between HMAS VOYAGER and HMAS MELBOURNE on the 10th February 1964, I attended a Memorial Service at the Jonathon Rogers Memorial.

It was a nice and well conducted by Chaplain Darren Hindle RANR and it had been organised by the Naval Association of Australia, Central Coast Sub Section and the President Mr Colin Simpson On completion of the Service where Wreaths were laid by Mr. Colin Simpson, The Hon. Mrs Lucy Wicks MP ands the Mayor of Gosford, Councillor Lawrie McKinn.  The Naval Ode was Recited by Mr Colin Simpson and a Minutes Silence observed followed by Reveille and the Blessing by Chaplain Hindle.  All then made their way back to the Everglades Country Club for the Luncheon and refreshments and by this time it was very warm, so it made it enjoyable and here friendships were rekindled and the normal warries spun.

Chief Petty Officer (Coxswain) Jonathon Rogers GC, DSM – HMAS VOYAGER – QUO FATA VOCANT ' WE GO WHERE DESTINY CALLS US'.  Jonathon Rogers was born at Llangollen, in the United Kingdom and at the age of 18 , joined the Royal Navy . Here he served on 13 ships , mostly during the years of WW II and was Awarded the Distinguished Service Medal (DSM) for leadership whilst serving as Cox'n of Motor Torpedo Boat (MTB) 698 in actions on the nights of 23 March and 23 May 1944.  After the end of WW II he served in the Korean War and then came to Australia and joined the Royal Australian Navy as Coxswain in 1956 ,

The Rogers Park in Woy Woy was named in 1986 in memory of sinking of HMAS VOYAGER and the loss of 82 Members of the RAN . This was and is still the greatest peacetime disaster the the RAN has ever had. On that fatal night of 10th February 1964 HMAS VOYAGER in company with HMAS MELBOURNE was carrying out night flying exercises at approx 20nm from Jervis BAY , and VOYAGER's duty was to act as RESDES. She was tasked to change to a new course but during the manoeuvre something went wrong and they came into collision. The ships hit and VOYAGER was cut in two with the foreward section being to sink immediately.  CPO Rogers took control and tried to bring calm in this situation and realised that not all would be able to manage to escape through a small hatch, and also , he being a large person , he had no chance at all. Here he assisted those were able and the foreward section sank about 10 minutes later, but Rogers was heard leading the remaining doomed sailors in a prayer and a hymn during their final moments.  CPO Jonathon Rogers was Awarded the George Cross (GC), the highest bravery Award then available in peacetime, for organising the escape of as many as possible and encouraging those who could not escape - to meet death alongside with Dignity and Honour.

Their loss and devotion to duty and the Royal Australian Navy should not be forgotten and it is hoped that this Service will be continued.
Lest We Forget

FOOTNOTE. In the Daily Telegraph they have a section called HISTORY – ON THIS DAY , well on the 10th February there was no mention of the loss of HMAS VOYAGER and 82 young Australian sailors who perished during this fatal collision, so without using any Association names ,(FNSA, RANCBA RSL) I sent a correspondence on my own behalf to the Editor of the Daily Telegraph, advising him of this and hoped it was an oversight it is hoped that in the following years that this be corrected and this will not be forgotten.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President FNSA & RANCBA

Vale Patrick Moonie R50507 (ex RS)

I'd like to just let you know that my father Patrick Moonie passed away on 10 February 2016 due to dementia.

Funeral is to be held at 1030 Monday 15 Feb at St Anthony's Church, Wanniassa ACT. If you could pass on the news to his Navy mates that would be appreciated.

Kind regards,
Paul Moonie
Many thanks Paul, sad news.  Patrick was an integral part of the dynamic team which organised the very successful 'Ultimate Smokey' RANCBA National Reunion in Canberra in 2002.  Our condolences go out to Joanne and family.  May he now rest in peace.

From the Archives:
Patrick Moonie R50507 ex-Radio Supervisor (RS).  DOB 28 July 1936.  Joined RAN 6 September 1954, DEE 5 September 1966 after 12 years service.  Postings - HARMAN 55/56, MELVILLE 56, SYDNEY 56/57, MELVILLE 57/58, HARMAN 58/60, MELBOURNE 60/61, CERBERUS 61/62, MELVILLE 62/63, ALBATROSS 63/65, MELVILLE 65, ANZAC 66, MELBOURNE 66, DEE 5/9/1966.  Promotions: OrdTel 1955, TEL 1956, A/LRO 1960, LRO 1961, A/RS 1962, RS 1963.

From Mick O'Donnell:
Dear Paul. Please accept our condolences at the passing of Pat. We've known and respected him since our days serving together in communications at HMAS Albatross in 1964, and beyond including his remarkable Antartica adventures. Please pass on our best wishes to Joanne and the family.
With blessings, Rev Mick & Cora O'Donnell, RSL Chaplain.

From Tony (Tackers) Miles:
I had the pleasure of serving with Blue in Albatross and travelled to Coonawarra with him on the old Ghan and then up to Darwin by car. Good bloke and great to work with.  Please pass my condolences to his wife and family. Rest easy old friend and thanks for the memories.
Tony (Tackers) Miles.

From Keghead Weaver:
Very sad news to receive the passing of “Blue”. He spent quite a few watches on “D” watch when I was POOW during 1960 and alas, always late, but always helpful. He will be missed by many. Condolences to Joanne and the family.
RIP mate
Keghead and Ruth

From Graham Bence:
Served with Pat a couple of times and ran into him while we were serving on different ships.  Sorry to hear of his demise and that he suffered from that dreadful disease dementia. There is nothing left when you get old but your memories and navy memories are the best of the lot.
Rest in peace Pat
Graham Bence

From Hugh Brendish:
So sorry to hear the sad news about Blue's passing. Spent a lot of time with Blue working on the 2002 Canberra Reunion and remember enjoying many cold ones with him in Darwin when I did my reserve time. Carole and I will be attending the funeral on Monday
Hugh Brendish

From Trevor Percival:
Dear Joanne and family.
So sad to hear of your recent loss. He was a good bloke and I enjoyed serving with him on the Melbourne and up at Coonawarra where he did a couple of fishing/hunting trips with me in my Volkswagen.  We as a navy family all loved "Blue" and will miss him very much. You take care and stay safe.  Yours in comfort.
Trevor (Percy) Percival (the young old fella).


Norm Harrison in Sick Bay

Big Norm has been through the zipper club routine at the National Capital Hospital in Canberra.  He has had a replacement heart valve and a single by-pass and like any good sportsman is ready to go home after just five days.

The heart valve was apparently a congenital problem but the by-pass was probably the result of many years of smoking. I saw him today and he looks remarkably well after such surgery.  He will obviously have quite a time in the cardio rehab area, but luckily, he has dodged a bullet that may have come later with more serious consequences.

He says hello to all his old mates and reckons his repairs will probably outlast him.

Dave Jeffrey
Thanks Dave, we have no doubt that Norm will recover well after his grease and oil change and wish him all the best for his rehab.

Dave, Good to hear the Bigfella has survived all that trauma. Can’t keep a good communicator down, they say.
Not looking forward to going through that myself, as my cardiologist tells me it’s not a case of “if”, but “when”.
So I have an unenviable task to ‘look forward to’ some time soon.

What the hell are you doing ????? Having an big operation like that and not  telling the mates in “D” watch and you can’t make it to the Wets for the next few weeks.  Not Fair Big Fella as it was your shout.
Seriously Get well soon son.
Bogey Knights.


MELBOURNE/VOYAGER Collision - SAR Operations

Having served at Creswell Marine Section after the Voyager incident I feel that the story below would be worthy of putting on QSO. Kerry Stevens was a good bloke and gives a good description of the life of a Crash Boat Crew.

Kev Ruwoldt

An interesting bit of little known history.

The Search and Rescue Boats operating out of HMAS Creswell in support of air operations contributed greatly to the saving of survivors from HMAS Voyager. Their story largely remained untold. I do recommend you read the article at the following link:

The 52nd anniversary of the collision is next week, this is a timely reminder of what our shipmates endured.

Quo Fata Vocant (We Go Where Destiny Calls)

10th February 2016 is the anniversary of the sinking of HMAS VOYAGER, with the loss of 82 crew. This was and still is the greatest peacetime disaster the RAN has ever suffered.

On the night of 10 February 1964 HMAS VOYAGER was in company with the Carrier HMAS MELBOURNE preparing to carry out night flying exercises approximately 20 miles off the coast from Jervis Bay NSW. VOYAGER's task was to act as plane guard, in case an aircraft failed to make a landing on or take off from the carrier and had to ditch into the oggon. She had practiced this manoeuvre with the Carrier many times in the past including that day, so what happened and why it happened can never be fully explained.

At 2052 VOYAGER was tasked by MELBOURNE to change to a new course in an attempt to "find the wind" to allow flying operations to commence. As part of the manoeuvre she had to take up a new position on the port aft quarter of the Carrier. During the manoeuvre at 2055 something went terribly wrong and she came into collision with the MELBOURNE. The collision cut the ship in two just aft of the bridge. The bow section began to sink immediately due to the weight of the forward 4.5"gun mounts and went down in minutes. The stern section remained afloat and did not sink until after midnight. Of the 413 crew onboard that night 14 Officers and 67 sailors and a civilian dockyard worker died. Most of those who died were in the forward section and could not manage to escape through the ship's escape hatches.

Many acts of courage were displayed that night, in particular that of CPO Jonathon "Buck" Rogers who, knowing that he could not escape because of his size, assisted other sailors out of the escape hatches and then toward the end, led the others with him who also could not escape in hymns as the bow section went down - (Survivors, swimming away from the ship reported sounds of singing from inside the bow section as it slipped below that waves). CPO Rogers was awarded the George Cross, posthumously for his action and courage. There were many other acts of selfless courage displayed that night by members of the VOYAGER crew.

It took two Royal Commissions to determine the cause of the accident and many years for the survivors and victims of this tragedy to obtain just compensation. The last claim was settled in July 2009, 45 years after the accident. Unfortunately the claimant had by then died in 2003.

Please take time on the 10th to remember the crew of HMAS VOYAGER and their families. Their loss and devotion to duty and the Royal Australian Navy should not go unmarked in history.

The Naval Ode.

They have no grave
but the cruel sea.
No flowers lay at their head.
A rusting hulk is their tombstone.
Afast on the ocean bed.

They shall not grow old
as we who are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them
nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun
and in the morning,
we will remember them.

Lest we forget

RANCBA Reunion November 2016 - Registration Process

Registration for the RANCBA Reunion in November this year is now open, effective from 0900 Monday 01 February 2016.

Follow this link for more information

Any questions or queries should be sent to all of the following email addresses.  This will ensure that if one of us is on holidays your email will be answered...  

Keghead Weaver @
Ken (Taffy) Eynon @
Peter Guy @

Keghead Weaver
01 Feb 2016


January 2016 Entries

Nobby Clark (ex TO) in Sick Bay

Received the following email from Nobby Clark this week and thought it would be of interest to you and the members.

Nobby joined the Navy in August 1959 in the same intake as me and we both became TO's doing the same courses together. We were both posted to HMAS Quiberon in June/July 1960 and while I was then posted to Harman he went to HMAS Nirimba. Coincidently from there we were both posted to HMAS Duchess for her commissioning into the RAN.  Nobby then took early discharge and subsequently joined the Army.

We lost touch until the early 90's when we again made contact and have been in touch since then. He now lives with his wife in Bonalbo, NSW.

"Hi all. Friday 15th Jan, wife Nancy was taken to Lismore Base Hospital where found lots of blood clots upper chest area. After visiting her on Sat 16th, on way home I was involved in bad head on crash about 6.45 pm. Was taken to LBH also, suffered cracked sternum, crushed vertebra lower back, large haematoma up and right of groin, lots of bruises and pain from groin to neck, and I consider myself very lucky. Home from hospital late yesterday and in a body brace. If Nancy had been in the car I doubt she would have survived."

Daryl Cross (ex LTO)
Thanks Daryl, we wish Nobby all the best with his recovery, I don't know how he survived!

Andy Cowley here would you please put a post in QSO from myself and Dewey Parnell re 'Nobby Clark in sick bay' from Darryl Cross.

G'day Crossie, not good to hear about Nobby (and Nancy too), been in touch with Dewey Parnell and we both send our best wishes to the injured and hope for a full and quick recovery, we missed him at the last couple of Quibs reunions, also good to see you still going strong (hopefully) mate.

Best regards Andy Cowley


Voyager Commemoration - Brisbane

Open invitation to all - could you please send on to any of your contacts who may be interested in attending this Annual Commemorative Service.
Sonja Hellier

From: Saint Mary's Office
Sent: Tuesday, January 05, 2016 9:16 AM
To: 'Alan and Sonja Hellier'
Cc: 'Priest In Charge'
Subject: Voyager Commemoration Service

Dear Alan and Sonia,

St Mary's Anglican Church, Kangaroo Point will be holding a Voyager Commemoration service on Sunday 7 February 2016 at 9.00am.

We extend a warm welcome to you both to attend this service and ask that you advise other interested members of the Naval community about this service.

An invitation has been sent to Commander Tedman and we have requested a colour party and Band.

Your assistance with this Service is much appreciated.

Kind regards
Kym Markwell
Office Administrator
Parish of Kangaroo Point
Saint Mary's Anglican Church

Ian Schubert (ex CPOSY) in Sick Bay

Just to let you know I had a minor stroke on Sunday morning. There has been no damage.

I will be in Canberra Hospital until at least Wednesday or until they come up with a solution. Recently I was diagnosed with an enlarged heart plus some trace of emphysema - never smoked!

On a happier note Kylie presented us with our 3rd Grandson so things aren't all that bad!

You can pass this info on if you wish & I will keep you posted.


From Norm Harrison:
I have just left Schubes and he is in good spirits and without any visible signs of having had a stroke. He is still having tests but things are positive and he just needs to take things easy and look after himself (there's a message in that for all of us!!)

Update from Schubes 14/01:
Hi All, just a sitrep on my recent visit to hospital. I am now safely at home armed to the teeth with medications, now waiting for further instructions from the Cardiologist re more tests.  Thank you all for your kind messages recently will keep you posted.

From Keghead Weaver:
Schubes, glad to hear that those ‘kind’ people in Canberra Hospital were able to see that you were really ‘skulking’ and have kicked you out.  Know what you mean by ‘all those medications’, but, look after yourself and look forward to seeing you again soon for lunch.


RANCBA ACT - Australia Day BBQ

The Association will be holding a BBQ on Australia day again this year – details as follows:

Where : The home of Jan and Greg (Stretch) Beck – 2 Fowler Place, Chisholm ACT – Map 36 E4.

When : Australia Day, Tuesday 26th January 2016 – 1100 onwards.

The Association will provide sausages, bread, nibbles etc. – BYO drinks.

For catering purposes, please advise me if you are joining us.

Please pay respect to neighbours re parking, driveways, nature strips etc.

Please wear a name badge - any badge will do as long as it's your own.


Peter Guy
02 6288 0828
0499 991 421

VALE Len 'Buck' Rodgers R55958 (ex LTO)

It is with very sad feelings that I have to advise of the passing of Ex LTO Len 'Buck' Rodgers . I received also a phone call from Ex Yeo Alfie King.

Buck was a great hand, and from what I can remember, he served on HMAS VOYAGER ( Commissioning crew) , HMAS TEAL (Indonesian Confrontation) HMAS HOBART Vietnam, and who could forget the way he ran the MHR at HMAS KUTTABUL Comcen.

He will be sadly missed by all that served or knew him.

He was a very great part of the NSW Chapter Committee when I first came on board, and served on the Committee till he moved down to the South Coast, but remained a committed Member.

Following received:

Dear members,

It's with sad news that I advise of the passing of Len Rodgers on Friday 8 January 2016..

I will advise of funeral times when I have them.

Secretary Eurobodalla Vietnam Veterans Peacemakers and Peacekeepers ASS INC

Lest We Forget
Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW
Sad news, the year has not started well.

Bucks funeral will be held at the Broulee Crematorium Broulee Road (runs off Princes Highway to ocean, the turnoff is about halfway between Mogo and Moruya), on Friday 15th Jan, commencing at 1500K.

A large turnout of old shipmates is expected as well as the local V.Vets.  3 of us off the Voyager that shipped with Buck in 61. More to follow.
WHIZZA (Brian Wheeler)

From the Archives:
Leonard John Rodgers R55958.  DOB 05/02/1940.  Joined RAN 26.10.1959 DEE 25.10.1968.
Postings: CERBERUS, VOYAGER (Commissioning), KUTTABUL, TEAL, KUTTABUL, HOBART, KUTTABUL (DEE 25 October 1968).  TO 14.10.1961, A/LTO 02/09/1966, LTO 02/09/1967.

Very saddened to read that Buck has left us. We served together on Voyager late 50's early 60's. Val & I always tried to visit when we were down Bawley Point way. He will surely be missed by all who knew him.
RIP Buck
Lest We Forget
Bill Aylott

FUNERAL SERVICE for the late Ex LTO LEN 'Buck' Rodgers

Along with my wife Helen , we drove south to attend the Funeral Service for the late Ex LTO Len Rodgers on Friday 15 January.

It was held at Broulee which I believe is about 10ks south of Batemans Bay, off the Princess Highway. The Service commenced at 1500, to a big congregation, and Buck's son, Matthew came forward and delivered a beautiful speech about his father. He also read out two letters, one from Annette (Buck's wife) and then his daughter , Bucks grandchild.  It was a very emotional time

I had been contacted by Annette on Monday night, and if I was attending could I say a few words about his time in the Navy. Having met Buck in January early '64 when I was at GI to Commission HMAS MORESBY and had gone up to the Comcentre at HMAS KUTTABUL, I was introduced to him. Sadly the next month, we both stood and watched HMAS MELBOURNE being towed to Codock, after the fatal collision with HMAS VOYAGER. Buck had served aboard VOYAGER for nearly 2 years and he was emotionally upset.

I told Annette I would be honoured to give a speech on him, and I think I covered all from our first meeting, his time on HMAS TEAL when his CO, Lieutenant Gus Murray was Awarded the DSC during an incident with the Indonesians in the Confrontation, then his time aboard HMAS HOBART (Captain, Guy Griffiths) during HOBART's first deployment to Vietnam., and then how he ran the HMR at the ComCentre, HMAS KUTTABUL

Then who could forget when NSW (Sydney) , hosted the 2005 National RANCBA Reunion and Buck was now President of the Board of Directors, Marrickville RSL and the facilities they were accorded to us for Committee Meetings to make sure the Reunion for about 550 attending ran smoothly and all went away after 5 days of having a great time.

On completion of the my speech, the President of the Bateman Bay Soldiers Club came forwarded and carried out the RSL Tribute. At the Laying of the Poppy and asking if all ex Serving personnel to come forward and Lay a Wreath, I could not believe how many there were. One had been a CPO aboard HMAS HOBART at the time, and unfortunately I did not write down his name.  On completion all were asked to remain Standing for the Last Post, Observe a Minutes Silence and then Rouse.

This brought to an end of the Service for a great person, but all were invited back to the Batemans Bay Soldiers Club to talk about Buck and partake of refreshments

Ex Communicators in attendance, Helen & Allan Moffatt, Brian & Patricia Wheeler, Alfie & Bev King, Tony Froome, Doug & Lesley Mortimer, Trevor Pike.
I signed the Condolence Book on behalf of the following and also mentioned their names when giving my speech as they had contacted me before I left to drive there.  RADM Guy Griffiths, RADM Tony Horton, Cmdr Ken Swain, Alan Rodgers & Dave Mclean ex VOYAGER, Andy Mills, Harry Firth, Bill & Val Aylott (Bill was ex VOYAGER) Les Sheehan President of the VOYAGER Assn, Frank Lawton, Doriel Wailes – past Treasurer of the RANCBA NSW Chapter.

Also Bob & Sandra Crelley they had both known Buck when they worked at IBM and when I advised them , asked me also pass on their condolences and apologies that they could not attend. Bob had been the past President of the Parramatta RSL Club.

Buck you were a great hand, and you are now out of pain.

Smooth sailing old mate.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW

FUNERAL SERVICE – Robin 'Rigga Mortis' Clifford. 9/11/1935 – 27/12/2015.

Today (Thursday 07 January), accompanied with my wife Helen, we drove to Canberra to attend the Funeral Service for the late Robin 'Rigga Mortis' Clifford. When I received a few correspondence stating that Rigga was in palliative care and his passing would be soon, and as I had known Rigga from the end of '55, I advised that I would attend. I could tell many stories about Rigga, and all are true. As far as his nickname, I am pretty sure that I know how that came about. The funniest thing, most did not know his correct name and I always remember at the end of '58 whilst at HARMAN (the old fibro huts we all lived in, 20 to a hut, no A/C, hot in summer and bloody freezing in winter.), well one day, there was a announcement on the PA from the QM's lobby, Telegraphist Clifford there is a outside phone call for you. There was no phones in the huts, so you had to run to the QM's lobby. But all were asking, who is this Tel Clifford,?? has he just drafted in??, and then it hit all, Rigga got out of his bunk and said 'well I had better go and see who likes me'!! Tel Clifford was the one and only Rigga Mortis.

But, with all the heavy and I mean heavy rain, flooding etc, that was causing havoc on the NSW coast, I was having second thoughts about driving down there. Fortunately the weather cleared and except for a few occasional rain showers, all went well.

The Service was held at the Canberra Crematorium on the outskirts of the ACT, on Thursday, 7th January commencing at 13.30pm and it was well attended. It was pleasing to see ex Serving Communicators in attendance and this included, Artie Wyatt – Patron of the ACT Chapter, Ken (Keghead) & Ruth Weaver – Keghead being the President of the Chapter, Kev Mongan, Dave Jeffrey, Sam Hughes, Lance Sutherland and Sandy Hastie.

The Service commenced with his daughter and granddaughter giving personal tributes on behalf of the family and friends. This was following by the Ex Service Tribute and this was given by Dave Jeffrey. He spoke about Rigga's Naval time, his many exploits during this time and then later on, his commitment to his family.

When it came time for the Placing of the Poppy on the casket, they were handed out by Sam Hughes, and then Dave asked all if possible to stand and he then Recited the Naval Ode and the Ode. This was followed by the Last Post, a Minutes Silence and then Reveille.

It was a nice Service and to use the old RN expression, 'Rigga would have been right proud,' and it was a fitting end to a very good life.

All were invited to attend and celebrate Rigga's life at the Ainslie Football Club. Unfortunately, I had to decline as it is a good drive back to Sydney and with the weather, I did not want to trust it.

When speaking to some of the ACT Chapter, all are looking forward to seeing as many as possible at the RANCBA National Reunion to be held in Canberra in November this year.

RIP Old Mate

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt OAM
President RANCBA NSW
Follow this link for entries leading up to Rigga's funeral.

More details from Keghead Weaver:
It looks like I have been 'upstaged' by Shorty (once again) as he has 'reported' on Rigga's dedication exactly as I would have.

Not much sense putting 'two' reports about the same event, not when they are both the same, now is it??

I can only reiterate on every thing Shorty has said except that the 'drinks and nibbles' at the Ainslie Football Club were very enjoyable and a chance to catch up with the family.

A lot of 'waries' were told to them that they have probably never heard before, but they enjoyed them. All communicators who attended the funeral, except for Shorty (reasons given) attended.


From Artie Wyatt:
Would you be kind enough to post a thank you from myself and Keghead for the members who kindly supported Riggars family at his funeral, especially Shorty for coming from Sydney.
Hope we have a healthy and safe 2016.


Vale Angus Walsh OAM PM4431 (ex L/Tel)

Another WW2 Veteran who did an incredible lot for the Corvettes and others.

Leading Telegraphist  Angus Walsh OAM of Werribee passed away on 1JAN16, aged 91.  Angus was instrumental in having the HMAS Yarra memorial established at Spotwoods, Melbourne.

Yours aye,
Terry Makings (via Laurie Pegler)
Lest we Forget

Happy New Year

Sandy McNab sends.....

I was hoping to be first in the book with a New Year greetings 'happy photo' but you beat me to it with another sad Vale entry. I noted you did not take a Christmas break from the website entries and I trust that you and Sarah are travelling as well as can be. Keep up the great work John, it is indeed a wonderful medium for all the Communicator family, and although you may have some difficult days I know your personal endeavour is truly appreciated.

Happy New Year to you both.

Sandy and Pat


Vale Roma Phillips, Nee Roma Heap W85525 (ex LWRROM)

I received a sad phone call from Bob Phillips (ex PTI) this morning informing me of the passing of his wife Roma Phillips, NEE Roma Heap, who joined the WRANS in 1962. She passed away in QLD this morning 2/1/2016, with Bob by her side. A dear friend for 53 years. She will be dearly missed by family and friends.

Dell Pellow (Nee Coutts-Smith).

Sad news.  Lest we Forget.

From the Archives:
Roma Lynette Heap, W85525, Born 23 January 1944, Joined WRANS 11 September 1962, Postings - CERBERUS, HARMAN, MELVILLE, HARMAN.  Promoted LWRROM August 1964.  Discharge on marriage 25 September 1965.