'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 names of those below will be familiar to other shipmates who may also visit this site.

We are now in direct contact around the globe via the Internet, email and social media, 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 this 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

September to December 2020

Shorty Moffatt sends:


Now, to make this a better day, I just had a phone call from Trevor Pike , and he sounds great and very positive
They (medical people) are very happy with his progress and more so I would say his outlook on overcoming all his medical problems.

He is still at his sister’s place and along with Joan (his partner) had a wonderful XMAS and hoped you all the same.

They will be looking around for accommodation soon , but it will have to be close for his on going treatment and will let me know where and other details but to let each and everyone, thank you for you enquiries and your best wishes.

What great news for this NEW YEAR.

Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt

Vale Graham Ogg R54886 (ex LTO)

Dave Jeffrey passes the sad news:

Just to let you know, Oggy died in his sleep on Saturday night. No further details yet.

More detail will be forwarded as it comes to hand.


Our Final Meet and Greet for 2020 at the Grand CentraL

L to R…Noel Chidgey, Jim Eagles, Shags Hellier, Tackers Miles, Kev Ruwoldt, Trev Percival, Don Ruwoldt.

We would also like to wish all Communicators throughout each state a very Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year and we
would like more Communicators to join us in 2021…Coivid-19 was not helpful throughout 2020.
Next meet will be on the 11th January 2021.

Kev Ruwoldt,

Aboard the SYDNEY SHOWBOAT  for the Xmas Cruise

Terry “Stomp” Forward & Allan “Shorty” Moffatt – old friends from way back

XMAS Harbour Cruise – Sydney – Friday 11th December

Herewith the GROUPIE photo of ex Communicators from last Friday aboard SYDNEY SHOWBOAT (brilliant) – unfortunately 2 missing , Lesley Lalor as you are all aware had a small fall and did damage to her ankle, and Helen Moffatt as an Ex Snr Reg Nurse (and Communicator) stayed with her till the arrival on NSW Ambulance Anyway , it was a great day and full credit to El Presidento Brian Gray for putting it together.

I would like to wish you, your family and friends.

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM


VALE Trevor Norwood Mander R59450 (ex LRO)

It is with much regret that I noticed in today's West Australian that Mongrel had passed away peacefully on the 5th December in Valentine, NSW.

There is apparently a Live Streaming of a service this Saturday commencing at 1000 AEDT.

I had some great times with Trev while he resided in WA but a few years ago he moved over to the East. I don’t remember much of his service time except he was on the Melbourne when they hit Voyager.

Max Hasson

I served with Trevor aka Mongrel at HMAS ALBATROSS, February’ 67 til December ‘67 , He posted out to the USA to commission HMAS BRISBANE and I left to do PCT for PB’s at CERBERUS. On discharge he joined DCA and I believe he was FSO over in WA for many years.

Believe me, he lived life to the full – a good hand.

RIP Mate
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM


Yesterday, I drove to Newcastle (Belmont) and attended the Service for the late Trevor Mander , having served with him at Nas Nowra .(HMAS ALBATROSS)

It was held at the Pettigrew Family Chapel, Pacific Highway, Belmont to a very and I mean a very large attendance   The Service was conducted by Celebrant Carolyn Read.

Tributes by the granddaughter and then one of his son’s John and then by modern technical ways, his other son Craig and family in the UK due to COVID

Trevor’s life was shown in pictures , from his time in the RAN, he was aboard HMAS MELBOURNE when it was in the fatal collision with HMAS VOYAGER, – training in the USA and the Commissioning of HMAS BRISBANE and subsequent deployment to Vietnam

On taking his discharge, like many of us, joined Dept of Civil Aviation and he was stationed in WA, but here he became very involved with youth groups, sport, theatrical shows, and appears his BBQ’s were great!!!.

Then returning to NSW and settled in Valentine , became heavily involved with the local Bowling Club and this was very evident and most if not all where there in their uniforms and when the coffin was wheeled from the Chapel, they formed a “Guard of Honour” it would have been 4 deep at least. 

On leaving the Chapel, I spoke with his wife and family and passed on sincere sympathy on behalf of the RANCBA – they wanted to know if I would be attending the Wake at the Valentine Bowling Club, as I could let others know more about his time in the Navy , but here I declined – long day and a good drive back to Sydney

RIP Mate – It was a privilege to have know and served with you 

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

From Ian Barrons:
I first met Trevor Jan 63 intake did the comms course he was posted to Melbourne and I went to Vampire and we met up again on the commissioning crew on Brisbane, its getting hard to read these vales with so many shipmates passing the bar, he will be sadly missed RIP mate.

From Frank Woods:
I shared many wonderful times with Trevor whilst serving on the Melbourne and Brisbane (USA). He was full of life, a great bloke and true to all his friends. I had the privilege of viewing his funeral by live streaming – a very moving service.
RIP Trevor
Frank Wood

It was heart warming to read words from Ian and Frank. Quite a few of us from the Melbourne met again on the Brisbane. Trevor was a great mate, great operator and we never knew what to expect when stepping ashore. The live stream was extremely touching, seeing Shirley and her family again. We have now lost two T’s ……Trevor M and also Trevor Harriss. We greatly miss both of you. RIP.
Parry{Barney} Barnard


This Service was held on the day of the Anniversary, 19th November at the Cenotaph, Martin Place, Sydney on a very warm/hot day This Service is to mark the tragic loss of HMAS SYDNEY and all crew when she encountered the German Raider KORMORAN off the west coast of Australia.

The Service was smaller than usual and this was due to the COVID 19 restrictions still in force and all adhered to – this included , by Invite only – if I was unable to attend, no substitute, if not well , do not attend – on arrival, temperature taken and escorted to the seating allocated.

Mr. Brian Yeo , HMAS SYDNEY Association carried out the MC duty

All were requested to stand for the March On of the Catafalque Party and Flag Orderlies from the current HMAS SYDNEY.

The Welcome Address was given by The Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP, Federal Member for Sydney and this was followed by Commander E. Seymour RAN Commanding Officer HMAS SYDNEY

Prayer by Chaplain John-Paul Barry RAN and following the Wreath Laying Service, and some included the Hon. Meryl Swanson MP – Shadow Assistant Minister for Defence, The Hon. Tanya Plibersek MP, Ms Felicity Wilson MP representing the Premier of NSW , The Hon Gladys Berejiklian, Rear Admiral Mark Hammond AM RAN Fleet Commander Royal Australian Navy (Rear Admiral Jonathon Mead having been promoted ) Commander Edward Seymour RAN and Mrs Judy Shalders on behalf of the HMAS SYDNEY and her crew. Cmdre Nick Heyler MBE RAN Rtd, Patron of the HMAS SYDNEY Association, Mr John Hall representing the Deputy Commissioner NSW & ACT Dept of Veterans Affairs, Supt Gavin Wood APM, Commander City of Sydney Police Command.

This was followed by Representatives of several Associations , and here I was given the privilege to Lay a Wreath.

The NAVAL ODE was Recited by Warrant Officer Ben McQueen CMS – Command Warrant Officer HMAS SYDNEY
The LAST POST – ONE MINUTES SILENCE – REVEILLE (played by the detachment of the RAN Band Sydney)

The NAVAL HYMN followed by the BLESSING (Chaplain John-Paul Barry RAN)

All to remain standing for the NATIONAL ANTHEM

This was followed by the March Off of the Catafalque Party and Flag Orderlies , and VIP’s and Guests depart.

Even though the Service was much smaller than normal ,it was well done and a credit to all concerned.

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

Trevor Pike’s Medical Sitrep

Hello there Shorty.
Me again with news on Trev's progress. Most of it good, but some of it not so good.

Trev has come ahead wonderfully since leaving hospital. He now weighs just over 50 kgs, thanks to his sister Marg's great cooking. His appetite is excellent and he has begun exercising too. Nothing too strenuous yet as he slowly builds back some of that muscle tone (and actual muscles) that he lost whilst in hospital.

We have got Trev set up with GP, community nurse, podiatrist, oncologist and endochronologist appointments for his ongoing care.

Unfortunately the last MRI that Trev had before leaving hospital showed a shadow on a small part of his liver which the oncologist believes is a return of the cancer.

We saw his oncologist on Thursday 12th and he was very impressed with Trev's progress since leaving hospital. We go back in a month's time to revisit Trev's options.

At the moment that may be chemo once again but it won't be as intensive as last year so there should be fewer side effects this time around.

We went to see Trev's new GP on Friday 13th and he was also very pleased with how well Trev looked after seeing him the week before.

As I said before, Trev is still not out of the woods yet, but he is progressing well both physically (from his sister & brother-in-law's care) and emotionally from everyone's ongoing encouragement and support.


I will pass on any message (best wishes etc) that you may wish to send
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt

From Phil Butler:
Could you put our best wishes for Trev up on the site.
We both knew Trevor well and are hoping everything works out well for him.
I am sure Trev can recall those shifts in the late 60s when we were on together.
I still can’t believe we got away with what we did some nights. Hopefully they will bring a smile to his face.
Some very interesting times, I must say. :o)
Stay well Trevor.
Phil and Marion Butler.



This Service to mark Remembrance Day was held at the Cenotaph, Martin Place on Wednesday 11th November, and with COVID 19 restrictions still in place , to a smaller number than normal in attendance. It was was by Invite only from the Premier’s Dept/Protocol and if attending, a confirmation was sent, which would be required to show/produce when entering the area allocated - it only via the Pitt Street end (southern end) and all other area was barricaded off – the first time I had witnessed this.

The MC was Mr Gareth McCray OAM , who does an outstanding job in this field – prior to the arrival of the Official Guess, he mentioned some WW II Veterans that were in attendance and one in particular was Mr Frank McGovern , 101 plus years , and it gives me much pleasure in letting all know about this very delightful person. A survivor of the sinking of HMAS Perth in the Battle of Sunda Strait , rescued and then became a POW of the Japanese at the infamous Changi Prison, then a labour on the Burma-Thai railway, sent to Japan on a POW ship, but unfortunately it was sunk in transit by an American Submarine, rescued again and then to work in the coal mines in Japan , and here it was bombed by Allied Forces.

Prior to the arrival of the Official Guest, Rear Admiral Jonathon Mead AO RAN, Commander of the Australian Fleet arrived and even though he was on the opposite side of the Cenotaph, he came over to where we were sitting , and said “a good turn out by the Navy” , this included Mr Keith Grimley, President NAA , Ms Liz Watts OAM, V/President FNSA & RANCBA, and then yours truly (self) – as were we all the required social distancing , he then spoke to us seperately.

The Hon. Gladys Berejiklan MP, Premier of NSW was the first, then Her Excellency, The Hon. Margaret Beazley AC QC Governor of NSW and here the Vice Regal Salute was played by a Detachment of the RAN Band Sydney.

Mounting of the Catafalque Party and Flag Orderlies by RAN personnel HMAS Waterhen.

Acknowledgement of Country was given by Uncle Harry Allie BEM (ex RAAF) and also a Gudjula Elder – this was followed by a Poem “In Flanders Fields” by two Students who had been Awarded the 2020 Premiers ANZAC Memorial Scholars- Miss Sienna Lucas and Mr Andrew Phelps.

Placing of Wreaths, with the Governor of NSW to Lay the first, then the Premier of NSW, the A/President of the RSL NSW with others to follow. Now, just after the Lord Mayor of Sydney has Laid the Wreath, a halt was called and this was perfectly timed.

The Ode was Recited by Mr Ray James OAM, A/President RSL NSW , The Last Post was played and One Minutes Silence and at which time it was exactly 11am and the Tower Cock in the GPO rang out 11 bells – so beautifully timed and then Reveille

Wreath Laying then recommenced. Seniors Officers of the ADF, Senior Officers Emergency Services, NSW Police, Ambulance, Fire & Rescue , Dean of Consular Corps.

Reflections was give by Rear Admiral Jonahton Mead AO RAN – Commander Australian Fleet and he here spoke with great feeling as his grandfather had been one of those who had been gassed during WW I – He also reflected on those who had served in WW II, Korea, Malayan Emergency, Vietnam etc.

Reading” A letter from Nurse Jean Curlewis” 1919 by Ms Patricia Skehan –who is the author of “Frontline of the Pandemic – Australia 1919)

Prayer by Chaplain Wynn-Jones RAN , HMAS Penguin

National Anthem was then played, but all were asked that due to COVID 19 not to sing and here it was carried out by AB Leigh Robke RAN – and having heard her before, she is delightful to listen to.

Catafalque Party and Flag Orderlies dismounted the Cenotaph and then the Governor of NSW received the Vice Regal Salute and this brought to an end of a a very well conducted Service.

On making our way out, I me up with Mr Frank McGovern who was accompanied by his son and we had a great yarn as we have known each other for many years – I enquired about his health as earlier this year, he could not attend the PERTH Service at the Chapel , GI as he had fallen and broke a rib – but he is travelling well .unreal.

Also met Mr Jeff OBrien Secretary RSL Hqtrs and Ms Liza Whitehouse , also from RSL Hqtrs to name just a few.

Allan Moffatt OAM
President FNSA & RANCBA Member NSW Chapter

RANCBA WA - Remembrance Day Lunch

RANCBA WA Chapter were guests of Highgate RSL Sub-Branch for their Remembrance Day service & lunch at the Flame of Remembrance, Kings Park on Sunday November 8th.

Pictured are Pat McNab and Jean MacLean await the main course.

Yours aye
David Maclean


Lofty Husk in Sickbay

Just letting you know that Neil ‘Lofty’ Husk R94657 is in sickbay after a suffering a stroke, heart attack, lung cancer and diabetes to top it all off.

He is in Rossmoyne WA

Neil Nunn

From Bones Lehmann:

I don’t know Lofty all that well but with what he is going through my thoughts are with him.  All the best Lofty.

From Neil Nunn:
An update on Lofty.
Unfortunately Lofty was moved to palliative care on Tuesday 17 November and sadly passed away at 2230 yesterday, Wednesday 18 November.
RIP Neil 'Lofty' Husk

Neil Nunn

From (Mike) Bomber Brown:
RE the passing of Lofty Husk.
Very sad news about Lofty’s passing. We joined together in Jan 65 (10th intake Leeuwin) You were a good bloke Lofty, RIP old mate, Bomber.

From Lynton Michael:
I have fond memories of Lofty as part of the crew “Up Top” 71 on HMAS Duchess….(Ted Watling being the CPORS and Peter Sinclair the CO).

For a wet behind the ears OCO, Lofty had a marked influence on my career. The adage “Lead by example” comes to mind and readily applies to Lofty’s influence on the Ords onboard.

A gentlemen’s gentleman.


Mick Duggan (ex PO Golly) sends:

Attempting to locate a member who dropped out of sight around 1999/2000.

R104322 CPO Wayne Ronald Butler (aka Harry Butler or Butts).

Was in Darwin at the time, having the occasional contact with Billy Bacon at the Humpty Doo Hotel (as you do).

Was in the Army Reserve at the time, joined the Regs and deployed overseas - so lost contact with activities in AUS for about a year. When I got back, stayed in the Army for the next 15 years.

Looking to identify if Butts is still vertical or if he has passed so I can my respects at his place of internment.

No indications in any of the obits from 1999 onwards, therefore reaching out to see if anyone in wider RANCBA community has any info on what happened to him in his life after the navy.


Mick Duggan
(m) 0417 817 632

Grand Central Monday 02 November

L to R Jim Eagles, Trev Percival, John Somers (Townsville), Don Ruwoldt, Doc Watson, Kev Ruwoldt.

Next meet 2nd Monday in Dec due Kev and Don attending NT Reunion in Maroochydore if everyone agrees???

Lets wear something bright for Christmas this time, Hawaiin or something similar (no Broncos thanks).


Kev Ruwoldt



Photo Grand  Central 12 October

L to R, Tackers Miles, Doc Watson, Shags Hellier, Kev Ruwoldt, Gus Dodds, Don Ruwoldt, John Horton.

Next gathering will be on the 2nd November.

Kev Ruwoldt


VALE – Ex CRS John Lloyd 'Dinny’ Reeves R35430

Passing on that today’s Daily Telegraph death notices lists:

John Lloyd REEVES CPO RAN, passed away 14.10.2020 aged 91.

Served Korea & Vietnam  HOBART II 3rd Deployment.

Funeral to be held Tuesday 27th Oct. south chapel Eastern suburbs

Cemetery.   Contact Boland Funerals 9314 2778 if attending.

He also served in the FESR aboard one of the Q’s during the Malayan Emergency and I was lucky enough to be on one of his Watches at DARNAVRADSTA (now called COONAWARRA ) during 1960 and it was a pleasure to do so and I have known him for many years.

On discharge he worked in QANTAS for many years in Communications and as long as can recall, he never missed ANZAC Day March in Sydney .

Lest We Forget

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

From Alan Murgatroyd:
Very sad to see Dinny Reeves move on to the BWO in the sky . A lovely bloke and a true gentleman . I used to love talking to him after the ANZAC marches , he was a font of information . Very sad to see the seniors of our branch fading away.

From Dave Jeffrey:
Just read of Dinny’s passing.  He was my first CRS at sea.  He joined the Sydney in 1963 and was relieved by Dinny Tindall in 1964.  Dinny was a great bloke and although I haven’t seen him for a couple of years now, I always remember him fondly.  It was he who nicknamed me ‘Bighorse’, for no other reason than I was in his way in the BWO one day and he told me “to get out of the way you bighorse!!!”  It stuck for many years!!  The bloody chief’s mess up there is getting pretty full!

From Trevor Percival:
I also had the pleasure and privilege of working with Dinny Reeves at Coonawarra. A thorough gentleman who will be sadly missed by his family and friends and fellow shipmates. Unfortunately our era are slowly thinning in ranks.RIP Dinny


For QSO – Latest on Trevor Pike

Today, 21st October I visited Trevor Pike again at Hornsby Hospital.  Used P/T all the way and had no probs what so ever.

On arrival, face mask and then temp taken, hands sanitized and advised I had not visited any of the places shown on a form.

Up to 3rd floor and on leaving the lift, sitting in the patients room, was Joan, Trevor’s partner , so we had a good long yarn and then it was my time to visit him (only one person at a time).

His friend Brian left and I sat and we started spinning warries – he looks a long long way better and has put on some weight – I did offer some of my stomach weight,!!

Anyway, next minute the physio arrived- a very nice person and he told Trevor , today we are going to go for a walk – no wheelie walker etc.

I then left and met Joan and Brian and I said, you are going to see a good sight soon, (I hope) but did not elaborate.

Lo and behold, around the corner came Trevor with the physio slightly to his right and then the physio left him and Trevor did a small walk on his lonesome.

It was something to see and I am so glad I picked to go over there again today . We all sat at the table – all with masks on and I suppose social distancing , but it was great.

It is a long way to go , but he has the strength and determination to overcome his condition.

I passed on to him all the very best from everyone.

Anyway that's my lot for today.
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

Today, Friday 30 Oct, made another trip over to Hornsby Hospital to see Trevor – normal ,mask, temp taken etc.
Trevor looked better than last time and also he has put on weight, be about 40kgs now – I did offer the Nurse who came in to check on something, that I would donate some kgs for him – can't understand why they knocked me back!!!

Anyway, that's it for today


Hi there Shorty  

Well, don't bother going to see our Trev in hospital any more. Because he ain't there!!! 

Trev was discharged from Hornsby hospital yesterday (Monday 2nd Nov) into the care of his sister Margaret in Galston. They gave him 2 big plastic bags full of medications plus paperwork.

Appointments to see various medicos over the next few weeks: endocronologist, oncologist, GP, etc. 

All a bit overwhelving for Trev at the moment after 5 full months in hospital but it won't be too long before life settles down.

Allan Shorty” Moffatt OAM


To Understand a Military Veteran you must know

Bob Toy passes on the following:

We left home as teenagers or in our early twenties for an unknown adventure.

We loved our country enough to defend it and protect it with our own lives.

We said goodbye to friends and family and everything we knew.

We learned the basics and then we scattered in the wind to the far corners of the Earth.

We found new friends and new family.

We became brothers and sisters regardless of colour, race or creed.

We had plenty of good times, and plenty of bad times.

We didn’t get enough sleep.

We drank too much.

We picked up both good and bad habits.

We worked hard and played harder.

We didn’t earn a great wage.

We experienced the happiness of mail call and the sadness of missing important events.

We didn’t know when, or even if, we were ever going to see home again.

We grew up fast, and yet somehow, we never grew up at all.

We fought for our freedom, as well as the freedom of others.

Some of us saw actual combat, and some of us didn’t.

Some of us saw the world, and some of us didn’t.

Some of us dealt with physical warfare, most of us dealt with psychological warfare.

We have seen and experienced and dealt with things that we can’t fully describe or explain, as not all of our sacrifices were physical.

We participated in time honoured ceremonies and rituals with each other, strengthening our bonds and camaraderie.

We counted on each other to get our job done and sometimes to survive it at all.

We have dealt with victory and tragedy.

We have celebrated and mourned.

We lost a few along the way.

When our adventure was over, some of us went back home, some of us started somewhere new and some of us never came home at all.

We have told amazing and hilarious stories of our exploits and adventures.

We share an unspoken bond with each other, that most people don’t experience, and few will understand.

We speak highly of our own branch of service, and poke fun at the other branches.

We know however, that, if needed, we will be there for our brothers and sisters and stand together as one, in a heartbeat.

Being a Veteran is something that had to be earned, and it can never be taken away.

It has no monetary value, but at the same time it is a priceless gift.

People see a Veteran and they thank them for their service.

When we see each other, we give that little upwards head nod, or a slight smile, knowing that we have shared and experienced things that most people have not.

So, from myself to the rest of the veterans out there, I commend and thank you for all that you have done and sacrificed for your country.

Try to remember the good times and make peace with the bad times.

Share your stories.

But most importantly, stand tall and proud, for you have earned the right to be called a Veteran.


If you are a Veteran, please copy, paste and share.


Phil Roy sends:

I was trolling through some old Navy News and came across this snippet which I thought might be of interest to some on QSO.

I found in on the back page of Navy News (ROYAL NAVY) Sep 1966 edition.



Sitrep on Trevor Pike

The following update from Joan has been passed on by Shorty Moffatt.

Better news on his progress. Of course, many of you may know some or all of this information already.

Trev has now been transferred to the Rehabilitation Unit within Hornsby hospital (Bernard Curren building 17, 3rd floor, Mary Giles Ward, bed 5). Only one (masked) visitor at a time and none during lunch hour (12 to 1pm).

He is progressing quite well now, primarily because his stomach has finally stopped rejecting solid food. His nutritional supplement is only administered overnight, allowing him unrestricted mobility during the day.

At the moment, Trev weighs just under 40kgs. But that is much better than the 34kgs he was only a few weeks ago. He is now wearing proper clothes during the day, instead of hospital gowns, which is also very beneficial for his self esteem. He has daily physio sessions (one every morning, the other in the afternoon) The physiotherapist (at the moment a lovely 22 year old young man) is very pleased with Trev's progress and, more importantly, Trev's determination.

There is still a very long way to go but finally we are glimpsing a light at the end of the tunnel..
Joan XX

If all goes well , shall try to get to Hornsby Hospital and see Trevor – face to mask !!
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM



Today, 15th October I visited Trevor Pike (former President and long standing Committee person NSW Chapter) but sadly he is now a patient at Hornsby Hospital.

To put it plain, it has been a long 12 months at least, and it is a long way to go . He now weighs about 39-40kgs , but he is in good spirits and happy to see me , he would welcome anyone who can make the time to visit – I will be going again next week.

I found by using P/Transport it was so easy (also I love that free P/T for Veterans by the NSW Govt) . I caught a train from Westmead to Strathfield, just walk across other side and train to Hornsby – alight there, and go outside to Bus Terminal . caught a no. 575 and it drops you right in front of the Main Gate. walk down the hospital grounds to building no 17. enter BUT ensure you you have a mask on, your temperature will be taken, recorded and a coloured sticker place on your arm – also sign that you have not been to places shown on a form – I HAVE NO PROBLEMS WITH THIS .

Catch the lift to 3rd floor , Mary Giles Ward and see Reception desk and they showed me Trevor’s bed No 5) – only one person at a time and not during Lunch (12 – 1pm) .

It was a very nice 3/4 hour, talking away and here I passed on all good wishes that many of you had sent to me -  

Anyway, that's the latest and as stated, will go again next week

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

From Max Hemmy
Really great to read QSO post concerning Trevor. Have know him from way back and know he will not be giving up so easy.
All the best mate.


RAN I/S Cricket Team

Dug this photo of the RAN Interservice Cricket Victoria Team Summer 1962/63 held at RAAF Base East Sale out of the old sea-bag and thought maybe a copy could go in the RANCBA Sports Photo gallery.

There are only 2 Comms in the photograph that I am aware of - Dave Jeffrey (the team's opening bowler) and myself.

Peter Saunders

Thanks Peter, I will also put it on Sports Team Photos.

WRANS Class Photos Class 47 of 1959

Hi. I came across your web site recently and you asked for any WRAN graduation pictures. Here is one that is not posted and you may use if you wish – it’s class 47 of 19 November 1959. That’s my wife Cora van Arkel 4th from left top row who ended up a kellick RP.

I joined Sig School in 1962 and paid off as a WO in 1982. Cora and I met at Albatross, married in ’65, did 2 years on Manus, had 3 kids, now have 11 grandchildren and 5 ggrandchildren, and as we approach 80yo, our health is good and we’re still very happy with life living in Canberra. She was a bit of a poster girl in her day!

Best wishes
Roger O’Donnell
0423 798 737

Check out my 4 published historical/fiction crime novels at and purchase either an Ecopy or a hard cover copy.

Thanks Mick, I will publish the class photo to the WRANS Class Photos shortly.

WRANS Class 152 of 1974

I am looking to locate members of WRANS Recruit Class 152 who joined in August 1974. If you are interested in connecting with the 20 members already located, please email me at

For any Partners who may be reading this who think this may apply to their spouses, please pass on the info.

Thankyou in advance.
Sharon Mundy (nee Blanch).

Vale Frederick John Harper R54251 (ex LRO)

Fred Harper passed away at Midnight 7th Oct 2020 at St Vincents Hospital, Brisbane.

Details or his service will be forwarded when known.  Not sure of Fred’s Pussers details but he joined in April 1958 for 9 years serving at Cerberus, Melbourne, Harman, Melville (C’warra), Vampire (all I know of).

The funeral is at 11 am at the BAPTIST CHURCH, Bongaree, Bribie Island on Friday 23rd October 2020. It changed to the Baptist Church due to size.

RIP Fred.
Kev Ruwoldt

From Sonja & Alan Hellier:
Vale Fred Harper – many of you will have happy memories of your time with Fred both while in the service and since.
He will be sadly missed by many.

From Tackers Miles:
Sadly Fred passed away at midnight and has joined the many in the big wireless office in the sky. I will let you know what the funeral arrangements are when known. Obviously all cannot attend but I know that your sympathies will be with Jan and his family.


A query for QSO please. 

On behalf of an RAAF Sub Branch member, can any ex Daring sailor recall the messdeck number of the mess directly below ‘B’Turret on the Darings.

 Thanks in advance.

Frank Lawton

From Rob Jocumsen:
The 3CZ and 3DA messes were under A turret.
The Comms mess on Vendetta was 3DA mess.
on Voyager it was 3DZ mess.
Was never on Vampire or Duchess so don't know which was the communicators mess

From Brian 'Dobbo' Dobson:
It has been a long time but here goes.
Comms mess on Vampire 3DZ.

I think ‘B’ Turret was just forward of the Wardroom and one deck above in front of the Bridge.
I am not sure about a Mess below ‘B’ Turret.

2 Deck, probably 2E, had, Port side going aft the galley, Junior sailors bathroom and then Heads. Starboard side going aft a Midshipmens mess, storeroom, HF Transmitters and another compartment (Greenies workshop maybe). Midships going aft had the Ships canteen, B turret loading from magazine (I think and I cannot remember what they called it), next the Comcen and then Senior sailors heads and showers.

I hope this helps our mate Mr Lawton.
cheers and regards
Brian (Dobbo) Dobson

From Ian Barrons:
RE Messdeck below B turret may be 2CA (sparkers and seaman circa 1963).

From Nugget Nugent:
Messdeck post refit was 3DZ, I was Mess deck Kellick 72/73 I think.


Please Update your Email Address

Some members must forget to advise you when they change email address.  Another one I got from the RANCBA website has bounced back to me. I sent it to Andy Mills, got it from the contacts on the website and it bounced back to me.

Keep up the good work.

Stay safe and well during these crazy times.

Best wishes
Trevor Percival

I can only echo Trevor's comment above.  Please update your email address if it is out of date on the RANCBA website. We don't know what we don't know!
John Curbishley
Web Yeoman



At our last committee meeting it was agreed to postpone our Annual General Meeting, held in October each year, due to the restrictions of the COVID-19 epidemic. 

It was agreed that the AGM will be held in conjunction with our Australia Day BBQ next year.    Details will be emailed closer to the date. 

Stay safe.
Peter Guy
0499 991 421


Able Seaman Moss Berryman, last surviving member of a daring mission off Singapore – obituary.

With the Australian and his comrades posing as Malay fishermen, Operation Jaywick destroyed or damaged 37,000 tons of Japanese shipping.

4 September 2020 • 9:00pm

Description: cid:11C920F58F40457D93535DE417AA14F4@IANS

Moss Berryman

Follow the link below for Moss' obituary from the Daily Telegraph


VALE Paul Raymond Walshaw R95793 (EX-TO) THU 17/9/2020.

At very short notice (5 hours) myself (ex-TO) and wife Serena (ex-LWRROT) were requested to deliver the RSL Tribute for the above name sailor (70 Yo).

Whilst I never crossed paths with him, was able to glean off various sources that he joined LEEUWIN Oct 1966 (17th Intake), was on a T course at CERBERUS late 1968/early 1969, and, did 9 trips on the Vung Tung Ferry (both as an ORDCO  and TO) between 1967 and 1971.  Service unclear after 1971, but family advised he paid off in 1973.

RIP Paul.

Keep safe all.
Dave Sutherland

Sid Sweeney change of Address:

(Graham ‘Sid’ Sweeney, Mustang, OK, USA).

Just about everyone I know wants nothing to do with me, so whether the address is correct, or not, is somewhat moot. On a more respectable tone, although I have been out of the loop (being over here) for many years, it is still comforting to go through the different pages on the website and recognize names from the ‘dark ages’.

Sid Sweeney


Re Sid Sweeney.. Had lunch with him in Adelaide a few years ago and he was only using a fork to eat his meal....been in the states far too long.. by the way he looked fit and healthy although a little bit grey like the rest of us.

Bones Lehmann

Legacy Week

Please find attached a photograph of myself and Kaye Mongan, the President of the RANCBA (ACT), at the Australian War Memorial at the opening of Legacy Week.

Kaye, the widow of our late shipmate Kevin Mongan, represented Legacy Widows and gave a wonderful address to the distinguished gathering which included the Governor General General Hurley and Mrs Hurley.

Kaye did us proud.

Yours aye
Sam Hughes

Well done to you both, and also you both look in good health.  Rgds.
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

RN or RAN Sparkers?

Came across this photo whilst assisting in the HMAS Stirling Museum....

RANCBA members may be able to assist in identifying the location/era? Suspect it may in fact be of RN origin. ?

(Australia flashes don't appear to be evident - although if the red ones, may not come up too well in the photo)....?

TA-SM REG, A/USO (Part Time)
STSC, B81, HMAS Stirling

Re the photo and whether they were RN or RAN Sparkers as no Australia flashes on shoulders.

In 1961 along with the late RO Ron King we were selected for 2 years exchange with the Royal Navy in England and on our uniforms we had to sew AUSTRALIA flashes.

Then in 1965 whilst on the m, sweeper HMAS SNIPE in the FES for the Indo-Borneo Confrontation we were all issued with AUSTRALIA flashes for all uniforms.

1964 I Commissioned HMAS MORESBY and we did not have them then.  So for my thoughts it would have been somewhere in OZ prior to 1965.

Allan “Shorty’ Moffatt OAM


Vale Robert Ernest Scales R35692 (ex Ldg Sig) - Korean Veteran

Bob SCALES, 91 old ex Signalman, DOB 18/05/1920 - served aboard HMAS Bataan and Sydney.

I don't know if he was a member of RANCBA or not, however he crossed the bar here at Darlington Aged Care Community, Banora Point NSW 2486 today, 31 August 2020.

Funeral details are not known at this time

I trust that your family and self are keeping well at this difficult time.

Take care
Sincere wishes
Brian Shoobert

'Beachball' at Coonawarra

Would just like to let all Comms people who were posted to Coonawarra over many years, that the civilian icon whose nickname was 'beachball', I recall as the civilian of the establishment drove the rubbish truck, helped everybody out in settling in, passed away recently peacefully.

Bill Clemson

Can anyone shed light on this, the only 'Beachball' I recall is John Thorp.  Bill's daughter Julie thinks his name might be Ron Quinn?

From Dusty Millar (ex WOEWT):
Sad to hear passing of Ron “Beachers” Quinn, first met him in 1979 in the COONAWARRA J.S bar where he perched himself with his CC and dry. He was our 8 ball captain for a few years and was a very popular man. Him and a group of civilians (gardeners and maintenance) lived in an old house across the road from the J.S bar. Beaches was actually the courier, his main run was from COONAWARRA to Shoal Bay, he would have completed thousands of runs to and from with his trusty metal signal container. Fond memories of a man who touched most of those posted to COONAWARRA. R.I.P Beachers.


Vietnam Veterans Memorial Service - Sydney

This smaller than normal Service was held at the Cenotaph, Martin Place on the 18th August 2020 , commencing at 11am.  Previously this had also been called the Battle of Long Tan Service.

Due to the COVID 19 pandemic, there was restrictions in force and also the numbers to attend was limited – some of the restrictions included:

a) by Invitation only, no additional guests may accompany you
b) if unwell , do not attend- if you cannot attend, no one can substitute on this occasion
c) entry by Pitt Street only , your name will be checked and here you will be given a temperature check and hand sanitizer, and then shown to the seat that had been allocated to you, your name shown on the chair and asked to remain in your seat till the completion of the Service
d) no singing by attendees – no shaking hands when greeting friends etc
e) strongly encouraged to wear a mask – which nearly all did

Here I was accompanied by Ms Liz Watts OAM, Vice President RANCBA & FNSA, though we were seated far apart – all seating was the recommended social distancing.

The Welcome and Acknowledgement of Country was given by the MC, Mr Gareth McCray OAM , and then all to stand for the arrival on the Vice Regal Party , this included HE The Governor of NSW, The Hon. Margaret Beazley AC, QC, Mr Ray James OAM, Vice President RSL NSW.

All were asked to remain standing for the mounting of the Catafalque Party by serving personnel of the Australian Army.

The Opening Prayer was given by Chaplain Ivan Grant Australian Army.

This was followed by the Commemorative Address by HE, The Hon, Margaret Beazley AC QC who gave a very good speech, and she spoke so proud of what Australian Defence Personnel have done during the Vietnam War but continue to do so . She also reflected on the sad/bad times when Members of the 3 Services returned to Australia and the problems they confronted .

Wreath Laying Ceremony was then held, and some that I remember . The first was by the Governor of NSW, Margaret Beazley AC QC, Mr Ray James OAM , Mr Geoff Lee MP ,Member for Parramatta and Representing the Premier of NSW, The Hon .Ms Gladys Berejiklian, Ms Meg Green National President War Widows, Rear Admiral Jonathon Mead AM, Fleet Commander, Major-General Matt Pearse Land Forces Commander, Mr Ron Glew President RAAF Assn, Mr Keith Grimley NAA NSW, Ms Diane Volgt President War Widows NSW to name just a few.

I didn’t carry any writing material to record names etc

On completion the ODE was Recited by Mr Ray James OAM and The Last Post played by Bugler Lance Corporal Justin Williams Australian Army Band.  One Minutes Silence Observed and then Rouse by Lance Corporal Justin Williams Australian Army Band.

Benediction by Chaplain Ivan Grant Australian Army.

All were asked to remain standing for the Australian Nation Anthem, but as no singing by attendees was one of the restrictions, it was sung and I might add very beautiful by Lance Corporal Amelia Johnson, Australian Army Band.

The dismounting of the Catafalque Party and to remain standing for the Departure of the Vice Regal Party.

The brought to an end of this very well organised Service and more so with all the current restrictions due to COVID 19 – for mine, and I believe most in attendance, it caused no problems in doing so.

Some of those that I met or saw, but their names was not on the Invite list and had to remain outside the barrier fence, Mr Ron Smith OAM , Castle Hill RSL, Mr Brian Yeo, HMAS SYDNEY Association Secretary, Ms Angie Flint RSL Sub Branch Secretary Combined Services Club.

As stated , a very good Service and special mention must go to Mr Jeff O'Brien State Secretary RSL NSW and Ms Lisa Whitehouse RSL NSW for all their work that they did to make this happen.

Allan Moffatt OAM
Federation of Naval Ships Association

RANCBA WA - July Luncheon

27 Chapter members & friends attended the July luncheon at the Quality Bayswater Hotel on Friday 31st July.

The Long Table (From Top Left).
Natalie Cullity, Judith Logan, Bob Trotter (Patron, standing) Pat McNab & Joan Aiberti (partially obscured) Elaine Rogers, Buck, Carol & John Hall, Gavin Ryan, Wendy Ryan, Brian Nichols, John “Bull” McLauglin (looking away, listening to Bob’s dit.

Second Table (L - R)
Judy & Harvey Dennison; Geoff “Ben” Franklin; Arthur Large; Bob Trotter.

Stay well
David MacLean
0418 917 982


L - R from Top L)
Alan”Buck" & Elaine Rodgers; Jack Caine; Natalie Cullity; Valma Graham; Judith Logan (partially obscured) : Gavin Ryan (fighting gear only) Wendy Ryan.
(The photographer has been made redundant).


Vale Maurie Schoer R49757 (ex WORS)

Brian Freier passes on the following information.

Ex WORS Maurie Schoer passed away Sunday night (Sunday 02 August).

Heard from Son in Law today.

Was a great bloke and anyone who served at Watson, would remember him as the Bar Manager.
Great bloke.

RIP Maurie

From the Archives:
Maurice Coleman Schoer R49757.  DOB 30 March 1935. Joined RAN 16 September 1953.


From Alan Murgatroyd:
Sad to see the demise of Maurie Schoer . I had a fair bit to do with Maurie , serving with him at Harman
when I was a youngster working ship-shore at Bonshaw , then later as an RS in Sydney during the Vietnam runs ,then again as a CRS back at Harman . Maurie had a very innovative mind and instituted some reforms in our comms systems which were very well thought out . I always thought that Maurie would have served well at Navy Office with his enquiring mind but to my knowledge he never got the opportunity . Just basically , he was a good bloke and I’m sad to see him go, so Vale mate ...

From Frank Hoy:
Re Maurie Schoer,
He was the WO at Coonawarra during my time and also the President of the senior sailors mess. This was early 70's, pre, during and post cyclone Tracey. Tremendous boss, very knowledgeable and a good man.
Much to my regret, I lost track of him after Coonawarra.

From Brian Nichols:
Could you please attach this to the post for Maurie Schoer.
Had the pleasure of serving with Maurie At Coonawarra 63-65.
While based in Darwin 73-75 in my civvy life caught up with him at the mess various times.
A great guy and fond memories of him. RIP. 

From Bill Clemson:
It was difficult to read that Maurie S has passed beyond the skip distance. Maurie and I had tremendous discussions in our 20 odd years of contact, if I remember we were always one step ahead or behind in our careers as sparkers. Alan mentioned he should have made NO due to his ability and fore thought on comms matters Our careers took different paths, I was sent to Singapore with the 7th Sig Div coming from Harman then when the Singapore Military took over was posted to Darwin. Not sure where Maurie was posted during that period. However the Personnel Liaison Team had been established in NO and Sandy Powell was retiring and I was called upon to take his place in Canberra , the irony of the next movement was I rang Maurie to see if he would like to replace me in Coonawarra under Capt Stan Hall and L/CDR Frank Densten he arrived in November 1974 a month prior to Cyclone Tracey, well the rest is history for that period, naturally Maurie and I had different versions of the drafts but I remember both he and Frank Densten were very very aware of what had to be done to restore Coonawarra/Humptydo TX station to operate functionally also to restore Coonawarra to a workable Rx Station, I also think he replaced me in my House at Hidden Valley.

Memories will always be with me and my daughter WORS Julie Clemson/Walker and her mother RO(S) Dawn Warman(Clemson).

Maybe I have put more light on his naval career. I follow the web site but do not provide comms info although I am well aware of the fellow comms mates that have moved to our comms stn in the sky 

Best regards
Bill Clemson WORS R50177


COVID-19 Lockdown

My wife Annemarie and myself would like to offer all those suffering and enduring the Victorian Lockdown all our best wishes and if there is anything at all we can do to help, albeit we live in Perth, please don’t hesitate to give us a call, although one stipulation being I will not shout you a beer.

All the best
Bones Lehmann

“you’re all heart Bones….if it was me, I’d ring the bell for them !”


Please be advised that the RANCBA-VIC website ( has been retired. Going forward, any information regarding RANCBA Southern Region will be posted to the Vic Chapter page located in the sub-menu of this national site:

Also, the following link is to the membership portal of the RANCBA Vic Chapter page.

RANCBA-VIC Membership Portal

Gary &Debbie Swanton

January to July 2020

Vale Captain Doyne Hunt RAN GLEX C (Ret'd)

Following is an extract from the Canberra Times
Saturday 01 August 2020.

Tremayne Doyne

10.02.1934 – 25.07.2020

Loved and loving husband of Beatrice (Betsey), father
of Sally-Bea, Emma, Amelia and Guy. Loved and
respected father in law of Tim Johnston and Christina
Hunt. Much loved grandfather (Pa) of Ben, Jack; Alice,
Emily, Richard, Charlie and William. Great grandfather
of Alexis and Ned, fondly remembered by Nicky and Jade.

He will be sadly missed

A family service was held at Harrow Victoria.
F. GREED & SONS A.F.D.A HAMILTON (03) 5572 1053

From Dave Jeffrey:
This morning’s Canberra Times announced the death of one Tremayne Doyne Hunt of Harrow, Victoria 25 July 2020.  I always thought his initials were DT!!  Doyne was one of nature’s gentlemen and was one of my mentors as a new Lieutenant in the RAN in 1977.  VALE.

From Royce Bell:

Also  wondered if Doyne had served as FCO and DNC?

From Alan Murgatroyd:
Another good Communications Officer gone, and I’m sure his Christian names were Doyne Tremain  , not the other way around. I served with him in Sydney and he was very pleasant to work for . When I got a bollocking from him it was well deserved and he was basically a good bloke too ,never up himself like some of his ilk, so goodbye Captain and sail well.

May he Rest In Peace.


Sitrep Trevor Pike – former President RANCBA NSW Chapter

Hi there Shorty & Helen, this is Trev's other half giving you an update on him.

As you probably know, Trev had a major operation about 18 months ago when he had his pancreas, spleen, gall bladder and part of his stomach and intestines removed. Chemo and radio therapy were all successful and he seemed to be on the improve.  However, earlier this year he started getting obstructions in his stomach.

He is now into his 8th week here in Canberra Hospital. He had a successful operation for a twisted bowel but unfortunately his stomach is refusing to function properly. A feeding tube was inserted into the abdomen during the operation to give him adequate nutrition. Trev also managed to get chest and blood infections since being in hospital but they have now been brought under control.

Trev is very frail and now weighs less than 43 kg. He is not mobile unless assisted by physios or nurses. The real positive in all this is that the cancer has not reappeared and Trev's other major organs are strong and healthy.

So, tiny steps forward at the moment and hope for Trev to begin slowly regaining strength and mobility.


I have passed on ALL BEST WISHES received , and they both thank you very much.
Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

Latest Medical Sitrep – Trevor Pike – former President RANCBA NSW CHapter

Hi there Shorty

Trev was transferred this Monday 10th from Canberra to Mt Wilga Private Rehabilitation Clinic in Hornsby.

Unfortunately (thanks to COVID restrictions) Trev can have only 1 designated visitor for I hour every day for the whole time he is there. We (his family & I) have made his sister Margaret as his designated visitor. She lives nearby in Galston and that is where he will be discharged to when he finishes rehab.

Marg can go see him most days and get his washing etc as I live much further away from Hornsby.

Trev is still very frail. His weight is now down to less than 40kg. Hoping that proper rehab will help as he had plateaued with his progress in hospital.

Trev is very touched with all the best wishes that he has received. Thanks you everyone

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM
Thank you all that have contacted me , re Trevor and your best wishes – I have passed them on.

Slight change of hospital for our Trev.
He was transferred from Mt Wilga to Hornsby General Hospital earlier today (Friday 14 Aug). He has had a couple of medical setbacks that the rehab centre are not able to deal with.

Two steps forward, one step back ... but he is in the best place to help him.

Will keep you informed as soon as I get more (hopefully positive) news


From Alan Murgatroyd:
Sorry to hear that Trev Pike is battling . I got to know Trev pretty well while I was doing Rocky time at Spectacle  Island . We had many fine drinks at  Drummoyne sailing club on a Friday at the raffles and told many lies to each other (me mostly) . If you get to read this mate , think positive and Dot and myself wish you all the best.

Update 25 August:
Trev is still in the main Hornsby hospital. Had a couple more hiccups. Feeding tube blocked and had to be replaced. And there is a bit of a worry with his liver function. 

I haven't seen him for the last two weeks, but his family is allowed to visit him in the hospital, which is good for his mental state.  Unfortunately, his weight is now down to about 35 kg so not much of him to keep on fighting all his health problems. But he is tenacious, so we keep on with our positive thoughts.


From Ted Murray (Membership Secretary RANCBA Southern Region)

Hi Everyone,

RSL Victoria has asked us to publicise the following pre-recorded event to be held on 15th August 2020. 

This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War and this significant anniversary provides us with an opportunity to recognise and acknowledge those veterans who contributed to the war effort and defended the freedom of nations throughout the Second World War. 

A service was to be held at the Shrine of Remembrance but due to the new Coronavirus restrictions it will now be streamed on their Facebook page

on 15th August commencing at 11:00 am.


Grand Central Hotel Mon 15 June

First meet since start of Covid-19 restrictions.  L to R - Gus Dodds, Jim Eagles, Noel Chidgey and Doc Watson.

I will wait until July 10 when the Premiers next stage will be announced hoping social distancing may be relaxed.

Kev Ruwoldt


Vale Brian Charles (Slim) Harley R58321 - ex PORS(S)

Rivtka Harley has advised John White that her husband Brian (Slim) Harley passed away on Monday 15 June 2020 following an illness. Slim served for 12 years in the RAN and attained the Rank of Petty Officer.  

 He had shore postings in Darwin, Canberra, Melbourne and sea postings on Derwent, Quiberon and Melbourne.

 A private funeral will be held for Slim.

 The family will be arranging an opportunity to “Celebrate His Life” at a date and time yet to be determined.  This information will be communicated when it becomes available.  

Ted Murray
Membership Secretary
RANCBA Southern
0407 705 906

From Dave Jeffrey:
Great sadness. Slim was a LROS at Coonawarra in 65/66. A good mate for many years. He was in the next door cabin in the Coonawarra blocks, and boy could he snore. If one remembers those blocks, they were louvred floor to ceiling and I was in the corner of one cabin and he in the adjacent corner next door. Although there was a wall, there was only about 2 feet between our heads and open louvres each side!!!

Believe he may have been partners with Blue Bushel and Terry Reid in the blue flame competitions at 2RS also!!! VALE.

Vale Robert Rowan Drury S9243 (ex WWII Signalman)

I am writing to you to advise of my father’s recent passing, Robert Rowan Drury S9243. He was 93 years old and he passed away peacefully on 7th June 2020 and it was written in his notes to advise the yourself and the RAN, so I hope this is the correct email address.

Kind Regards
Helen Fischer (Daughter)
0438 228 253

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

Sad news, may he rest in peace.


Vale Col Dicker R59872 (ex LRO)

Another candidate for the Big Wireless Office in the sky - LRO Col Dicker passed away after a lengthy illness at 0220 Saturday AM (6 June).

I have no other details on Col's service life other than he was at Coonawarra in 1968. He was on B Watch with Tackers, Jim Carey, Jim Eagles and myself. Did see him in Singapore on Parramatta in 1970 while I was on Duchess.

RIP Col wish you smooth seas.

Kev Ruwoldt

Sad news, may Col RIP.

From the Archives:
Colin Harold Dicker R59872, DOB 24.2.1947 - 6.6.2020.  Joined RAN 15.3.63 - DEE ?
Postings:  Cerberus, Gascoyne, Vampire, Harman, Melville, Stalwart.

From Ron Rigney:

Very sad news to hear about Col Dicker’s passing. I served with Col when he was an LRO and Killick of the Mess in HMAS Sydney (1972). During that period, HMAS Sydney completed a 7 week voyage to SE Asian ports, including the last of her many runs to Vung Tau.

According to the “Report of Proceedings” for November/December 1972, Commodore JLW “Red” Merson noted that “Apart from a few charges arising out of short tempers in the heat, and only seven absentee offences in Singapore, the conduct of the Ships Company has been very good”.

I was nearly one of those charges. As Killick of the Mess, Col had given me an order to do something which I thought was unreasonable. So much so, that I forgot myself and gave Col a bit of free advice (silly me). To which he said, “get your cap”! To which I said…”You’re kidding”. “No I’m not” said Col and the next thing I’m up in front of our Chief, CPORS Don Brindley.

Don heard Col’s story and then mine. Don decided that the matter should not go any further. However, I received a verbal kick in the pants from Don. Col received an apology from me and I did whatever it was that I was supposed to be doing. Nothing more was said about that incident.

Col and I parted ways at the end of that voyage and the next time we met was in 1985 when he was working for DCA (Airservices Australia) at Brisbane Airport. We renewed our friendship and became good mates long after our RAN time had finished.

I’ll miss Col very much and my sincere condolences to Dawdie.

From Jeff Dixon:

I was looking for somewhere to pass on the sad news about Col Dicker last Saturday evening when Dawdie rang us. I then found your page and thought I would maybe add a little.

I moved into a residence in Bracken Ridge, Brisbane in 2000 and Col was living across the road when he was working at the Airport as stated by Ron Rigney. It didn’t take long until we started chatting and found that we were both ex Navy.

I was a Stores basher and never came across Col during my time in. I know he was a proud member of your Branch attended a lot of the reunions, and we spent a lot of time remembering the ‘old days’ even though he had a good few years start on me.

He was, apparently, quite active in the village he resided in and was very popular with the other residents. I was very surprised when he told me he participated in the plays they put on from time to time. I always saw him as a quiet unassuming bloke. He did regularly contribute to the Letters to the Editor in the Courier Mail and I heard quite a few of his contributions read out on 4BC by Alan Jones and Ben Fordham.

I will remember him as a very thoughtful bloke who always had his brain in gear prior to engaging his mouth. I hadn’t seen him for some time since I moved to Glass House Mountains and as is always the way I 'should have kept in contact more often’.

I will always remember my chats with Col and Gail and I will stay in contact with Dawdie.

Fair winds and smooth seas Col, no more pain and RIP.

Jeff Dixon


HMAS SYDNEY II - First trip to Vietnam

On this day, 27th May 1965, B Coy 1RAR along with other elements of the 1RAR Group boarded HMAS Sydney bound for service in South Vietnam.

The converted aircraft carrier HMAS Sydney, departed Sydney on her first of over 20 voyages to South Vietnam, carrying 347 officers and men of the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (1RAR) together with vehicles, equipment and stores. The remainder of the battalion flew by chartered Qantas 707 jets on secret overnight flights from Richmond airbase to Saigon over the following two weeks.

The dispatch of this unit, totalling some 1,100 Australian Regular Army troops, marked the first deployment of Australian combat troops to the struggling Republic of Vietnam. 1RAR was generally considered one of the most professional and best-trained battalions ever to have left Australia, although deficiencies in its equipment and preparation would soon become apparent during extended operations in the bitter war in Vietnam.

Australian support for South Vietnam since the early 1960s was in keeping with the ‘forward defence’ policy of Australia and the ‘containment’ strategy of the United States, aimed at stemming the spread of communism in Southeast Asia.

Allan "Shorty" Moffatt

Peter Guy passes on the following request:

Good morning Peter

Thank you for taking the time yesterday to discuss the claim for compensation by Mrs Nicole Grimmond who is the widow of R153933 CPO Luke David Grimmond who passed away from cancer on 31 October 2019 at the age of 43.

I am doing advocacy work at the Veteran ’s Support Centre in Page here in the ACT and am currently seeking a pension for Mrs Grimmond. The initial application that the cancer was related to defence service has been rejected by 
the DVA and I am working on the appeal to the Veteran’s Review Board.

The avenues I am pursuing are:

• cancer was service related; and

• CPO Grimmond may not have received appropriate clinical management of the disease.

Before CPO Grimmond passed away he mentioned in passing that as a communicator he may have been continually exposed to electronic radiation or other cancer producing agents.

I am seeking two things:

• First anyone who may have served with and knew CPO Grimmond

• Second. Anyone who may have served on the ships that CPO Grimmond served on and is aware of any reports about radiation or other cancer producing agents on board these ships.

CPO Grimmond’s details are:

Name: Luke David GRIMMOND
Enl Date: 16 January 1995
Rank at time of death: CPO
Branch of RAN: Communications
Postings: ? - HMAS Parramatta
1995 - HMAS Cerberus
1995 - HMAS Harman
1997 - HMAS Brisbane
1998 - HMAS Melbourne
1999 - HMAS Harman

Operational Service: Afghanistan (Op Slipper)
Iraq/Western Asia (Op Catalyst) 2003 - 2009
Northern/Eastern Africa (Op Falconer) 2003
Western/Southern/Central Asia (Op Slipper??) 2001

Some of CPO Grimmond’s records of service are sketchy, but the above is the best information I have.

If anyone can assist in my injuries I can be contacted on:
Mobile: 0411 022 212

Thank you for your assistance.

Allan Joyce

Vale Jack William Shave R93124 (ex ABRO)

Regret to report the sudden passing at RPH on 04 May of Jack Shave, aged 76, following a heart attack.

Jack was a first course JR at Leeuwin and served at FND, Quickmatch, Voyager, Harman, Lonsdale (for Derwent).

He was medically discharged in 1965 from Harman following a motor vehicle accident.

Jack spent some years in DCA prior to moving, very successfully, into private enterprise.

Jack is survived by his wife Robin and children David and Jo Anne.

A good hand and a great friend who will be sadly missed.

David MacLean
WA Chapter

Lest We Forget

Condolence cards to 19 Len Howard Drive, Erskine, WA, 6210



ZOOM Committee Meeting for RANCBA VIC

Please post the below image to the QSO page, with a caption stating ‘that despite the current COVID19 environment in which we find ourselves in, the RANCBA Vic Committee have embraced technology and conducted an online committee meeting on 02May20.’

Who said you can’t teach ……


VALE Donald Ray ‘Titch’ Parsons R59929 (ex CPORSSM)

John White rang me with the sad news that ‘Titch’ has been found passed away in his bed.

Titch was born on 03 June 1947 and joined the RAN as a CERBERUS JR on 16 March 1963.  He spent his early years as a general service Sparker before joining the ‘O’ boats at PLATYPUS in early 1967.  He remained a sub-mariner for the rest of his RAN service.  I am not able to access personal records after 1970 but Titch served 20 years before DEE in 1983.

Shore Postings - Cerberus & Platypus
Sea Postings - Sydney, Oxley, Otway, Ovens, Onslow, Otama & HMS Sealion.

I have a personal connection to ’Donny’ as we knew him in Launceston when we were both Sea Cadets at TS TAMAR.  He joined Pussers 6 months before me, and I lost touch with him over the years (it was a different Navy on the boats) but I enjoyed catching up with him at the last RANCBA Reunion in Geelong where he appeared to be fit and well.

May he RIP
John Curbishley
Web Manager

From John 'Nokka' White

I have known Titch all of my Navy and past life.  We have done many things together and he was a stalwart who attended all of our regional reunions and family functions.  His neighbour is the current speaker of the house and he attended all of the naval activities that Titch organised through the Lilydale RSL. They were best mates.

Titch lived a very full life, involved in everything.  A staunch member of RANCBA VIC.

RIP old mate, I am sure I shall think of you often – Cheers.

Lest We Forget

More details will be published as they come to hand.



ANZAC Day on Eyre Peninsula

Meg Haensel-Fuss ex LSROT sends:

We're surviving well here on the Eyre Peninsula, luckily no virus to date, but most people are pretty good at social distancing here.

It is raining here now, started about mid-day, good as we started seeding in the dry last week and, what is ANZAC Day without rain!

As we couldn't hold our normal ANZAC Day activities, we compromised with just five of us getting togetherat 0545 this morning and doing our own thing at our Memorial. (Should add that in SA our social distancing gathering allows for 10).

I read a poem, 'The Unknown Soldier', then we laid flowers on the four sides of our Memorial - Denise laid some flowers for ALL Who Served, Jaxen for WWI, Fox for WWII and David for Vietnam - the four of them are all ex Army, but won't hold that against them, they're good mates and they all know that the Navy (me) keeps the show running!

The flowers all came out of my back yard and a nearby paddock, rosemary, wattle and yellow and pink flowering gum, it helps when one has a big back yard on a farm!

Following the laying of the flowers, Denise recited the Ode, and then we had the Last Post, observed a Minute Silence and then Reveille. Bit different having to have the Last Post and Reveille as a recording off the mobile. We followed this up by standing for another few minutes in silent reflection before breaking off for a chat and some more photos, the later ones weren't such a problem but taking them earlier on proved a bit challenging in the dawn-light, but we got some for the archives.

Around 0700 a local country singer and her hubby (both RSL Affiliate Members) turned up with speakers & pa equipment and Bev sung for about half an hour, she has quite a good repertoire of ANZAC songs now, and sings most years for our Commemorative Services.

During the last couple of weeks we had been encouraging the locals to participate in the 'Light Up the Dawn' Service which many did and we also encouraged them to come down to the Memorial today and pay their respects, so there are quite a few additional posies of flowers around the base of the plinth now.

Anyway, I dribbled on enough now. Have enclosed a couple of photos of this morning - ANZAC Day in Cummins, if you'd like to post them on the RANCBA page; and yes the old pussers burberry still fits...just!

Stay safe and take care, all the best,

(Meg Haensel-Fuss ex LSROT)

From Beetle Baillie

A big thank you to you Meg for continuing to put yr QSO articles into the RANCBA section and not going to the FACEBOOK section which lots of us mere ordinary people do not spend most of our life on.

Yr latest article is a really good report on what u folks on the Eyre Peninsula did to remember those who went before us and some of whom paid the ultimate price. It’s a pity John had to take down the old Guest Book section but I am most grateful for people like u that keep us up to speed with what’s happening. Well done.
Beetle Baillie ex LROS


I received the following from Robyn Rouse, wife of the late RO Greg Rouse - a mate from way back on sweepers in the Indonesian Confrontation 1965-66 and he relieved me on the mighty warship KIMBLA the following year .

He always looked forward to this special day to remember those that went before and served this Nation , and he always wore the uniform of the Navy with great pride .

Lest We Forget
Allan "Shorty" Moffatt OAM


ANZAC Day 2020

Along with Helen and neighbours across the road, next door etc, we were on our driveway at 0555am for the Service on the ABC from the AWM Canberra.

Very different, and looking back it would be the first one that I have missed not Laying a Wreath and the March and I say no more about the Reunion, as far as my family can recall, would be when I attended the 100th Anniversary of ANZAC 2015 at Gallipoli , Turkey.
This was taken after we came inside, glad it was a nice morning and not cold.

Allan Moffatt OAM


ANZAC Day 2020

Would you mind posting this on the website please?  A friend of mine produced it and he is hoping that the ABC will play it on Anzac Day.  

Frank Aldred



You may have already heard or read of the 'Light up the Dawn' concept for this year's ANZAC Day. The RSL is promoting this on a national basis.

For more information and resources, suggest you search .

Another excellent concept as it relates to playing a musical instrument on this date and time (6am). Information is available at with information and resources.

Lest we forget.
Dave Sutherland

Vale Eric John Buist R96132 (ex ROS)

It is with regret I notify you of the crossing of the bar of ex ROS Eric John Buist R96132, 20th Intake at JRTE at 5.45am 10th April 2020. He succumbed to Mesothelioma.

With the COVID-19 restrictions I am not sure of what will happen funeral wise.

Lest we forget my little mate.

Stay safe and well
Geoff Worth

From Beetle Baillie (ex LROS)

Another good (S) sailor gone far too soon. Served with Gopher at Harman around ‘71 and we got into all sorts of strife together around The Vic/Queanbeyan/Harman. We lost track of each other until the Darwin get together last year and my wife and I spent a couple of good days with he and Gillian. We then caught up with them again at the end of November, over the west, and although he was suffering, he was never going to give in without a good fight, as was the case throughout his life. We spent a wonderful Sunday with them and partook of his special seafood lunch and spun a few good warries. Our condolences to Gillian and Family.


Vale Roger Andrew Garrett R50822 (ex Tel)

Received a phone call this morning advising of the passing of our old mate Roger Garrett (Esq). who collapsed at home earlier this morning (Thursday 09 April).

His partner Ann Mc Donald is arranging for a private cremation and will organise a Memorial Service at a later date, as well as the scattering of his ashes over the water as per his wishes.

Roger was born in Winton in 1935 and was living in Buranda Brisbane when he joined the Navy on 25th February 1955 for 6 years as Rct Tel R50822.

Roger served on a number of ships including Quickmatch, Queenborough, Voyager, Melbourne, as well as stints in all the shore est6ablishments except SA and WA.

Discharged 22 November 1968.

Rest in Peace Roger

Sonja & Alan Hellier
Sad news, may he RIP

The following was passed on by Kev Ruwoldt:
I’ve gone to the ‘on-line’ version of the obituary and it’s a lot clearer there – so I blew up the Morse component and the result is below, as it should have been in the paper: 

Date listed: 25/4/2020

GARRETT, Roger Andrew

Old School Naval Communicator

.. - --- .-.. -.. -.-- --- ..- .. .-- .- … … .. -.-. -.- 
 (I told you I was sick)

20 April 1935 – 9 April 2020

Loving partner of Ann for the happiest years of his life, and Maree and Rick Somer, Shaun McDonald, and Vivienne, Harley, Koebe and Chance. Son of Albert and Ann (both dec’d), fond brother to Margaret, Wynn, and Alex, also Albert, Martin and Leo (dec’d). Fond uncle to many nieces and nephews.

Private cremation due to COVID-19. A Memorial Service will be held when restrictions are lifted.

Publication: The Courier-Mail, Brisbane

 Roger Esq. definitely had the last laugh!!  Clever little fella, eh? 


Vale Desmond Edward McKee R93067 (ex WORS)

Dave Jeffrey advises that Des 'Crossed the Bar' on Friday 27 March 2020.  He was privately cremated at Goulburn Crematorium on Thursday 02 April.

From the Archives:  Desmond Edward McKee, born 02/09/1944, Joined RAN 07/07/1960 as part of the 1st Intake of JR's at Leeuwin.

Sad news, may he RIP.

Fm Rod Beckinsale:

It was a sad shock to read today of Des McKee’s passing. I have many fond memories of Des who was my mentor in Navy days and someone I greatly respected. By some quirk and at every rank level I inherited Des’ shoes each time he was promoted and when he paid off. I always had my work cut out for me as they were very big shoes to fill. That he went on to a very successful career in the ACT Public Service would be no surprise to anyone who knew him. A thorough gentleman and a lovely bloke who I was privileged to share some time and reds with. My heartfelt condolences to Judy and Ryan.


Admiral Guy Griffiths AO DSO DSC RAN Rtd

On Saturday , 7th March at the City of Sydney RSL Club, George Street Sydney a Meeting was held and the Guest Speaker was RADM Guy Griffiths.

Here I was seated with Mr. Mike Perrott (MELBOURNE/FAA Assn), Mr Bob Auston SYDNEY Assn) and Mr, Bruce Richens, President of the NAA (Parramatta sub section) – there were others that I had met or known . It commenced at 1400 but most had arrived by 1345, and a few minutes after the starting time , RADM Griffiths arrived. For a person who had celebrated his 97th birthday a week earlier, he is so immaculate in dress and his speech was brilliant – He was down to speak for 1 hour, but he concluded at 1545 which allowed for those who wished to ask a question

He commenced with his start of his Naval career, his early life began in the Hunter Valley region and at the age of 13 years, he entered the Royal Australian Naval College as a Cadet Midshipman in 1937. After graduation he was posted to the Royal Navy in 1940 and joined the Battle Cruiser HMS REPULSE . Sadly on the 10th December 1941 HMS REPULSE and the Battleship HMS PRINCE of WALES was sunk , he was one of the survivors. He saw service on HMAS SHROPSHIRE and saw action in the SW Pacific and the battle of Leyte Gulf , Lingayen Gulf etc .

After WWII he served on the aircraft carrier HMAS SYDNEY and then HMAS ANZAC and in both occasions saw service in the Korean War. Service on HMAS MELBOURNE was to follow and in 1961 was the Commissioning Commanding Officer of HMAS PARRAMATTA, and in 1965 the Commissioning of HMAS HOBART in the USA and then the first RAN ship to be deployed to the Vietnam War- he spoke so proud of all who had been part of the Commissioning and for those who remained and served in Vietnam.

Later on he was the Commanding Officer of HMAS MELBOURNE and here the ship participated in the Operation to assist and help Darwin after it had been destroyed by Cyclone Tracey on Christmas Day 1974.

This is only a small resume of his career, but as stated he is indeed a wonderful speaker, and he throws in little “one liners” .It was a pleasure to attend and I am glad that I did so.

Allan Moffatt OAM

Vale Nathaniel “Jack” Dempsey R50200 (ex LRO)

Born 09 March 1937, Joined RAN 09 March 1955 for 6 years.  DEE 08 March 1961.

Jack passed away AT 1.15am this morning (25 March 2020). 

Jack served on HMAS Quiberon with Keghead Weaver. Do not have any other info on Jack’s Navy career other than he was fond of the WRANS.

Jack worked for the Dept Civil Aviation up until his retirement, serving in Madang PNG, Cloncurry and Townsville. Retired to Bargara with his partner Irene.

Kev Ruwoldt

Sad News, may Jack RIP.


HMAS PERTH Association & Plaque Dedication Service

This combined Service was held at the Chapel, Garden Island on Sunday 1st March 2020, but unfortunately due to the very limited parking available, I believe many cancelled out , even though they had submitted their names for entry to GI at the last moment

The Service was Officiated by Chaplain Andrew Watters RAN who did an outstanding Service and this was very evident during the Reflections on the research he had carried out.

After the Welcome by the Chaplain, all were asked to Stand as the Australian White Ensign was Paraded into the Chapel by a escort of Serving personnel – later on, some who had never seen this before , told me , it is so wonderfully carried out and reflects on well on the Navy.

The Opening Prayer and then the Hymn “O God Our Help In Ages Past” and then the Naval Psalm
Bible Reading from John 15 9-15 was Read by Anthony “Timber” Mills , President of the PERTH Assn

This was followed by Reflections and here as previously stated, Chaplain Watters had done some great re search and it was well received by all in attendance

The Hymn “Eternal Father Strong To Save” – the Naval Hymn was sung by all, and following the Naval Prayer and the Lord’s Prayer by all

The Plaque Dedication then followed for the Memory of former Shipmates

Here a family relative – friend – former ship mate are asked to come forward and speak on behalf of that person – brilliantly done

(For those that may not be aware, any former serving Member of the RAN , or WRANS , regardless of rank, rate or time served may have a Plaque Dedicated to them and is fixed in the Chapel of Remembrance)

Then followed a Poem, HMAS PERTH (by Vic Duncan – aboard during the Battle in the Sunda Strait and then a POW) and here it was Recited by Ms Christine Stewart , the daughter of John Grant also a POW) She spoke so well and very proud of all those who had Served on the PERTH in WW II.

Also a man came forward and passed on the best wishes of Frank McGovern , also a Member of PERTH in WWII, a survivor of the infamous Thai – Burma Railway and then a POW in Japan, he had celebrated his 100th birthday last October , but has had a couple of falls of late, the last being last week and broke a rib, and could not be with us today.

The was followed by the Naval Ode and ODE, The Last Post – A Minutes Silence and Reveille – By a Bugler of the RAN BAND – Sydney Detachment

All to remain as the AWE Colour party marched down the Aisle and the Chaplain resented the AWE to the Banner Bearer, they about faced and faced the Congregation and here all were asked to join in the singing of the Australian National Anthem (both verses) . – and the Blessing by the Chaplain

Morning Tea was then supplied by volunteers – all Ex Communicators and this is carried out in the vicinity of the Historical Bldg, The following made, and brought in by Jan & Ric Easom, Liz Watts, Ken & June Swain, Andy & Jan Mills and Helen and self (Shorty) Moffatt . Due to prior commitments , a few of our normal volunteers could not be with us today , Philip & Mary Bell, Diana Avent and her sister Liz.

The setting where we carry this out, in my opinion is one of the best you could wish for , on the shores of Sydney Harbour looking at Rose Bay area and yesterday the number of yachts made it look more so spectacular – and thoroughly enjoyed by all .
To each and everyone many thanks and also to Chaplain Andrew Watters and to PO Digby Ingham for all his work in the back ground and to those at the Historical Society for the use of their facilities . BRAVO ZULU

Also on the way home , I diverted to see Mr Don Ferguson WWII Convoy Signalman who sadly now in a resident in a Nursing Home . He is aged 96 years , but is still sprightly and we had a good yarn and wished all the best that know him.

Allan ‘Shorty” Moffatt OAM


If anyone who will be in Sydney on Saturday 7th March and would like to attend this presentation, herewith all details.

You are invited to attend our next presentation on Saturday 7th March 2020 by Rear Admiral Guy Griffiths RAN Rtd.
Cost is FREE, but a gold coin donation is always appreciated !

Venue: City of Sydney RSL, 565 George Street, Sydney NSW. Take the lift to 4th Floor – Liverpool Room.

RSL is located right hand side of George St and a 5 minutes walk down towards Central from Town Hall City Rail Station.

Presentation is timed for 14:00 – 15:00. Refreshments are available pre or post from the third floor Sports mans bar.


Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM

Vale John Alfred Martyn R39481 (ex LRO)

It is my sad duty to inform of the passing of John “Pincher” Martyn . He passed away on the 16th February 2020 at the age of 92 years.

During his Navy career from 9th November 1950 till 8th November 1962 , and after training at HMAS CERBERUS , he served on HMAS ANZAC – Active Service in Korea, HMAS HARMAN, HMAS QUIBERON, HMAS KUTTABUL, HMAS ANZAC.

He was a keen cricketer whilst in the Navy.

Rest in Peace Mate – it was a pleasure to have known you for many years.

Allan “Shorty” Moffatt OAM
RIP Pincher


All SHIP's Reunion November 2020

Shorty Moffatt has advised he will probably be attending.  Shorty is the only Communicator still alive out of the 4 who Commissioned HMAS MORESBY in February '64. 'He's getting worried, so better make the most of it now - the last Reunion was great.'


 Anyone interested in having a get together in November, Ballina Sub Section of the Naval Association is running a  ALL SHIPS REUNION in November.  It is a great weekend. Expressions of interest would be  appreciated before I spend hours organising.

Regards Junior


Vale Frederick Maxell 'Lofty' Burgin R49954 (ex CY/Const)

Hi from the Burgin Family.

Its with sad hearts that we wish to let you know that our beautiful Dad - Frederick Maxwell Burgin passed away last Sunday night, so for those who would like to attend Dad's funeral it will be held at the Norwood Crematorium Samford St Mitchell on Tuesday 18th February at 3.00pm and light refreshments after at 27 Follett St Scullin.

Lest We Forget

(Lofty's service details will follow shortly - he transferred to the Naval Police in 1966 and then took a free discharge in November 1969).


HMAS VOYAGER Memorial and Survivors Reunion

On this day, 56 years ago on the 10th February 1964 at approximate 2055 hrs , 19 nm from Point Perpendicular, Jervis Bay , the Daring Class Destroyer HMAS VOYAGER collided with the aircraft HMAS MELBOURNE (flagship of the RAN) with the fatal loss of 82 of the crew of VOYAGER. This was the worse peacetime Naval disaster of the RAN.

To Commemorate and remember those who were lost a Service was held at Jervis Bay from the 7th – 11th February . Sadly with age, health and the weather conditions that we have experienced in the last few months, the numbers were down. But , for those that attended and also NOK of departed shipmates, I believe were more than happy with what was arranged.

The first night, 7th a Meet & Greet was held , but for some of the Survivors, they were invited to the Senior Sailors Mess , RANC , HMAS CRESWELL for a Dining-In Night. Now, I have never served on VOYAGER, but due to the fact that I have been heavily involved in this Service for many years in different ways, I also received a very welcome Invite from the President of the Mess by WO Grant Leepere . We were driven to HMAS CRESWELL by Mrs Brenda Hannay, who I shall say more about later.

After the security checks were carried out at the Main Gate, we were then driven to the Mess – here we were met by the President and other Senior Sailors and made very very welcome.

After a welcoming drink, and 2 very important Guests had arrived, one being the Commanding Officer HMAS CRESWELL, Captain Bairstow CSC RAN and then the Warrant Officer of the Navy Deb Butterworth OAM , CSM and Bar who had arrived from Canberra. One of the Snr Sailors wearing Mess dress, but in lieu of trousers, wore his Scottish kilt, and with bag pipes, piped us into the Dining Room – it was beautifully laid ,out along with silver candle holders on each table . Seating was with a Snr Sailor on each side of you, and this worked well.  The meal was glorious, and the red or white wine was very welcome and when it came to Toasts, decanters of port were passed on each table.

One of the Snr sailors rose and spoke of the Naval career of the WO of the Navy, her career in the Naval structure was nothing short of amazing , and then she rose and spoke – her communications skills and speech were well done, my only regret, it was not recorded.

After the meal and relaxing drinks and talks, we were asked to leave the Dining Room and after a short period to return – the tables had been cleared, but in front of each person was now placed a envelope. The President rose and asked each to open the envelope and in turn, we had to stand and read out the names (2) in each slip of paper, it was the name of a Officer or Sailor who had lost their life that night – the first time this has been done.

This brought to and end of the formal affairs, but all to remain, linger and talk to who ever you wish to do so. Here Captain Bairstow came up and said hullo to me, I had met him at the previous VOYAGER Reunion in 2019, and then the WO of the Navy came around and to the 6 Survivors and myself, presented us a Medallion and a case containing pens. It was a night I shall always remember.

The following evening, a Formal Dinner was held and there was nothing but praise for both the Dinner and the Venue – here I carried out the duty of MC for the evening.  In my opening speech, I mentioned, 2 names John Withers and his email and just before leaving to drive down there, a phone call from ex LRO Alan Hellier and Survivor of the sinking and at present he is President of the RANCBA QLD Chapter.

On Sunday a Church Service was held at the Chapel, HMAS CRESWELL and Officiated by Chaplain James Sutherland RAN – he delivered a beautiful Service and this was more so when he explained how the Hymn “It is well with my Soul” came about – on completion Morning Tea was supplied and it taken up by all. A Luncheon was held at the Huskinsson Bowling Club , and here I caught up with Ex CYS Ian Schubert and his wife Marion – We spoke again on “old times”!!!

Monday, 10th February at the approx time that the fatal collision occurred, a Memorial Service was held in VOYAGER Park at the Memorial – it is a beautiful Memorial and on one of the walls that names of all those who lost their life that night. The Service was Officiated by Chaplain James Sutherland RAN and very well attended by all, plus members of the public.

On completion this brought to an end of 4 days of a mixture of both the Memorial and Survivors Reunion and I am glad that I attend and shall as long as I am invited.

This 4 days is the result of very hard work which is carried out by Mrs Brenda Hannay – Secretary – she resides down there, but sadly her husband a Survivor is now a resident of a Nursing Home and requires full ongoing assistance , plus many did not know, she drives to to Sydney each fortnight to check on and assist her mother (94 years old) – she is without a doubt a legend and should be awarded for all she does.

Some of the Communicators who were lost and I had served or knew. Bob Denham, we joined up together, did Rct School, sea training on HMAS GLADSTONE, School and this was his second posting to VOYAGER. LRO Don McPharlin great hand, Sub Lieut Errol “Sandy” Beavis, he had been my Regulating CRS at COONAWARRA in 1960 and had just returned from the UK after completing a SD Course, Yeoman of Sigs Kev Cullen, but also others Alex Hegarty, the only person to escape out of the wheelhouse and we served on HMAS MORESBY, Duncan Fletcher we served on the PB HMAS BARBETTE, Sig Gary Evans the only person to escape from the bridge, George Smith who came to MORESBY after survivors leave and time on QUIBERON This is just a few

It is hoped that this period of the RAN shall not be forgotten.

Lest We Forget
Allan Moffatt OAM

John, Just like to add an additional Communicator who as I remember it went down on the Voyager was TO Peter Harris. Peter was in my intake in August ’59 and was one of three of the class who became a “flag wavers”, along with Stuart Clark and myself.
Daryl Cross (ex LTO)


Vale Marianne Eynon

It is with a sad heart that I am informing you of the passing off Marianne Eynon on Thursday 13 February 2020.

Marianne's Funeral notice appeared in today's Canberra Times (Saturday 15 Feb).

Marianne was the wife of our immediate past President, Ken Eynon.

A service for Marianne will be held in the chapel of Norwood Park Crematorium on Friday 21 February 2020 at 1.30 pm.

Donations in lieu of flowers can be made to the Brain Tumour Alliance Australia.


Kaye Mongan
President RANCBA, Canberra

Sad news, our thoughts are with Ken and family.

Special thoughts from Robyn Rouse:
Taffy sorry to hear of the passing of your Marianne, it’s hard times when you lose your life long partner and I feel for you and your family. I do remember meeting her In your Canberra home quite a few years ago now.

Special thoughts to you. Robyn Rouse


RANCBA ACT - Australia Day 2020 - BBQ by Lake Burley Griffin.



In company with Cmdr Ken Swain AM RAN Rtd and many others we arrived at the Main Gate, Garden Island at approx 10.30am here our names where checked on a very big list and then taken to the waiting coaches and driven to the Chapel . On arrival there, and going into the Chapel our names and seating was carried out by 4 sailors and a CPO , who did a sterling job and later when it was starting to get very hot, they made sure everyone and I mean everyone had ample bottles of water to drink - they were a credit to their Branch.

The Chapel was completely full and this included the family , Mrs Pamela Leach Mr Michael Leach, Mrs Nicola Leach, Malia Leach and some of the following – it would be too long, which included HE The Hon Margaret Beazley AC QC Governor of NSW, Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michel Noonan AO RAN, Rear Admiral Jonathon Mead AM RAN, Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Tony Horton AO RAN Rtd (Patron the RANCBA NSW) Mrs Margaret Horton, Rear Admiral Guy Griffiths AO DSO DSC RAN Rtd, Rear Admiral Rothesay Swan AO CBE RAN Rtd (Former Fleet Communications Officer) Mrs Margaret Swan, Mr Ray James Vice President RSL NSW, Mr Bob Auston .Mr Lee & Rosemary Stockley OAM, Rose Bay RSL Sub Branch, Mr Tony Mills& Mr Mike Kay , President & Secretary of the HMAS PERTH Association , Sister Mary Leahy OAM Chaplain Sydney Port (MN) , The Hon Rear Admiral Peter Sinclair RAN Rtd and also the 35th Governor of NSW, Mr Greg Reid MBE – this was just some -

The Service commenced with all being asked to Stand and then the Officiating Chaplain Rev. Colin Acton RAN in the front and followed by the coffin borne on the shoulders of 6 serving sailors immaculately dressed in full whites and the coffin draped in the Australian White Ensign and all his Australian Order and Medals carried on a black cushion . They slowed Marched down the aisle The Welcome was given by Chaplain Acton and the Opening Prayer and then all to join in a beautiful Hymn Jerusalem

Following was the Service Tribute given by the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan AO RAN , and a herewith a brief coverage of his Service.

David Leach was born July 1928 in Perth WA, and at the age of 13 years, Joined the RAN as a Cadet Midshipman in January 1942 during WWII - at the RAN College he was appointed Chief Cadet Captain and was Awarded the King’s Gold Medal. In 1946 – 47 served in the Royal Navy in the British Pacific Fleet before returning to Australia and here he served on HMA Ships AUSTRALIA , MURCHISON, and ARUNTA , After specialising in Gunnery he then was the Gunnery Officer of the new Destroyer HMA VAMPIRE (and here Ken Swain was one of the young Communicators who were part of the Commissioning) . He then served as Fleet Gunnery aboard HMAS MELBOURNE.
Command appointments followed HMAS VENDETTA II 1964-66 and HMAS PERTH II during her second deployment in the Vietnam War 1968-69 . HMAS PERTH was effective in providing accurate fire on enemy positions , thereby earning a US Meritorious Unit Citation - He was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1969.

Following as Director of Naval PlaNS 1969-70 and then the RAN Representative in the United Kingdom 1971-74 . Appointed a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO) for his Services as Liaison Officer during a Royal Visit to Australia.

As Commodore served as Director of Naval Plans , Director General of Naval Operational Requirements 1975-76 before returning to Britain to complete the Senior Staff Course at the Royal College of Defence Studies
Promotion to Rear Admiral he was Asst. Chief of Naval Staff 1978-79 and then Flag Officer Commanding Australian Fleet 1979-80 and Asst Chief of Naval Staff Personnel 1980-81 . he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his Service as Commander of the Australian Fleet Advanced to Vice Admiral in April 1982 and became Chief of Naval Staff and was elevated to Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).

He retired from the RAN in 1985 but continued as a Member of the Australian War Memorial, a Member of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal, Life Patron the HMAS PERTH Association , Commissioner in the NSW Crime Commission and also served a Mayor of Woollahra Sydney where he lived with his wife Pamela.

The Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan AO RAN then Presented Mrs Pamela Leach with a Australian White Ensign.

Eulogies were given by Mr John Leach and Mr Peter Leach, Ms Nicola Leach and Mr Michael Leach.

A Musical Tribute, AN IRISH BLESSING by the Choir of the Australian Club – May the road rise to meet you May the wind be always on your back – beautiful and sang so well.

Prayers followed and the Lord’s Prayer
The Naval Prayer by Commodore Ivan Ingham AM RAN , and all to join in the singing of the Naval Hymn (music by a Detachment of the RAN Band).

The ODE by Captain Matthew Shand RAN –Commanding Officer HMAS KUTTABUL

Then outside from the Chapel , a Volley of Rifle Fire by an Honour Guard.

The Last Post – A Minutes Silence – Reveille ( RAN Bugler ).

The Committal and then all to remain standing as the Coffin was then borne by 6 serving sailors and Petty Officer in Charge and they all Slowed Marched down the Chapel aisle.

The Recessional Hymn – I Vow to Thee My Country.

On making your way down outside was the full Band of the RAN, a Honour Guard and then approx 2-300 sailors in full whites who marched behind the hearse.

This brought to end of what I would term – a beautiful service and a fitting end for some one who served their country.

We then joined coaches and at a very slow pace, made our way to the Main Gate, Garden Island.

Allan Moffatt OAM
RANCBA Member NSW Chapter


RANCBA Southern Region - Regional Reunion - CANCELLATION

The Committee wishes to advise that due to Navy Operational Commitments the Open Day at HMAS Cerberus has been moved from 1 March 2020 to Saturday 31 October 2020.

As a result we have decided to cancel the Regional Reunion scheduled to coincide with the Cerberus Open Day originally scheduled for 1st March 2020. We will be looking at this new date and will provide further information as it comes to hand.

If you have already organised your accommodation for this event can you please contact the venue and cancel your booking.

BIG4 Mornington Peninsula Holiday Park
2 Robinsons Road, Frankston South, Victoria 3199.
Telephone 1800 623 491

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me on 0418 524 067.

Regards Nokka


RANCBA ACT Australia Day BBQ

The Association will be holding a BBQ on Australia Day again this year – details as follows:

Where : Weston Park Yarralumla – the second parking area on the right – next to BBQ’s and toilets – look for our banner.

When : Australia Day, Sunday 26th January 2020 – from 1000 onwards.

The Association will provide eggs, bacon, sausages, bread etc – BYO drinks and chairs.

The area is a ‘Dogs on Leash’ designated area – kangaroos frequent the area.

For catering purposes, please advise me if you are joining us.


Peter Guy
0499 991 421


Side Swiper:

Those Sparkers out there may be interested in the attached, which I have recently built. (Described as a Side Swiper for the PC brigade).

The two adjustable contact units, (the two black bits either side of the blade) I have had in the shed for around 30 years – thought it about time I put them to good use.

Key is functional – I’ll probably donate it to the HMAS Stirling museum.

Cheers and best wishes to all in 2020.


L.G. Michael