QSO the World - 2004

Jim Carey passes the following sad news:  "It is with regret that I inform you that Steve Singleton, ex-RO from the 60's, passed away at Cairns Hospital on Christmas Eve after several years battling cancer. Steve's partner Jenny phoned to advise that Steve's funeral will be held at Cairns on Wednesday 29th December. Alan Murgatroyd will attend the service and will represent the RANCBA. Steve was a knockabout bloke who loved life and liked a drink on a hot day, as did most of us. Steve was a Voyager survivor and eventually settled in Kuranda, North Queensland. Gayle and I have stayed with Jenny and Steve in the past and it is beautiful part of the world. Our heart goes out to Jenny and Steve's children."  Tks Jim, Lest we Forget.  I apologise for the delay in posting this information - I was away on a Christmas break.  30/12/04.

Dave Jeffrey (President of the ACT Chapter) passes the following email from Robin Herron regarding the death of commander James Gerald Bridges Armstrong AM MBE RAN Rtd (formerly DEW-N), Aged 74 years:

"I am trying to establish a list of those who had close contact with James while he was serving as DEW-N. Sadly, he died in his sleep at Moruya Hospital this morning (Wednesday 29 December) after what must have been a very unpleasant and long battle with cancer of the oesophagus. Anne, his wife, phoned me to pass on the news. I'd lost touch with them over the years and regained contact (through DRCS and Dr David Gambling) only to discover how ill he was. He and Anne have been living in Gawler (outside Adelaide) and she had driven him up just before Christmas to watch son Tristan receive his doctorate from ANU and then to spend Christmas at Moruya with the children and grandchildren - at least they have that as a special memory of him.

When Anne called me this morning, she expressed a wish to have his funeral service here in Canberra; I gave her the contact details for RMC Duntroon' Chaplains and M H O'Rourke, Funeral Directors. I hope to hear more from her this evening or early tomorrow and will then try to circulate details of what she has arranged - I suspect that the service will be sometime next week. Would you please cull your collective memories and let me have names and contact details. In turn. I'll keep you all (any any others you suggest) advised of the outcome.  Best Regards, Robin Herron."
Lest we Forget.  30/12/04.
Following is an extract from The Canberra Times of Friday 31 December 2004:
"James's relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend his funeral to be held at the Anzac Memorial Chapel of St Paul, Duntroon, ACT, with a service commencing at 1pm on Wednesday, January 5, 2005, followed by a private cremation thereafter.  By request, no flowers.  In lieu, donations to Cancer Research.

Dear Webmaster,
Could you place a link on your website to www.findingsydney.com, the site of the Finding Sydney Foundation and HMAS SYDNEY Search Pty Ltd.
commodore Bob Trotter RANR FIEAust CPEng
WMP, this is a cause worthy of donation from us all.  30/12/04.


Peter Cockroft is searching for:  Ronald Arthur Robinson - communications Yeoman
I served with this guy on the Hobart during our 1967 tour of Vietnam. He must have a claim in for the Melbourne/Voyager disaster in 1964, as I have received a questionnaire from the Australian Government Solicitor. It appears he may now be in Victoria but I always knew him as a New South Welshman. If anyone knows of his whereabouts could you please let me know.

Peter Cockroft ex Yeoman

Jim Anderson sends: "G'day John. Once again, many thanks for maintaining this excellent site and for keeping us all "up to date". To you and Sarah all the very best wishes for Christmas and I hope 2005 brings everything you wish for. To all communicators in this Forum, have a good one and take it easy over the upcoming break. Best regards, Jim."  Many thanks Jim, all the best to you also. 23/12/04.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt passes on the following sad news: " Jean Munro current President of the Ex WRANS Association rang me yesterday to advise the death of Dorothy Anderson, Ex WRAN communicator and past President of the WRANS Association. Dorothy had planned to attend the 2005 Reunion, thought the 2002 Reunion in ACT great, and was looking forward to April next year. Dorothy's funeral will be held in Ballina on Wednesday."  Many thanks Shorty, Dorothy Anderson (nee Young) joined HMAS HARMAN in 1943 as WR1847.  I remember her having a great time at the 2002 Reunion (as did all the WW II ladies), so it is sad she will not be with us next year in Sydney.  Lest we Forget.  19/12/04.


Greg Palmer sends:  "Re QSO message (several entries below) from Tony Ey (served with him at Moreton) and his brother Mick (knocked around with him before we joined up). I tried to find Buri for Tony and Mick sometime ago, but with no luck. Please find attached a Photo showing from left to right. Buri Bradshaw, Bill Philips (dcd), Gary Nielsen (now in Bendigo), Neil Robinson (my best man, Derwent and Vendetta, and Kuttabul shipmate and we have been looking for Robby for a long time), and yours truly on the right. The photo of Buri may unlock some memories. Greg 'Pedlar' Palmer."  Tks Greg, a great photo - taken at the Bognor Hotel unless I am very much mistaken.  I have also posted it to the MSO page.  15/12/04.
Greg later advised:  "Had an email from Tony Ey, he has located Buri up near Bundaberg somewhere. Buri’s ‘phone number is 07 4157 8103 should anyone want to contact him."

Buri Bradshaw, Bill Phillips, Gary Nielsen, Neil Robinson & Greg Palmer.

A Christmas Message from HMAS ADELAIDE
I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the members of the RANCBA a Merry Christmas on behalf of the communications Crew, HMAS ADELAIDE. We are currently overseas conducting Middle East Operations and will be away from our loved ones for the festive season, something I know many of you have been through. I go to the website often to check for any updates and now my junior operators are aware of its existence. The morse tapes are of special interest to the senior killicks who think they can outdo the oldies in a MRX.

Merry Christmas

CPOCIS Rohan Jennings
communications Manager
Rohan, our thoughts will be with you and your comms crew over Christmas.  We are proud of you and the great job you are doing. Many thanks for taking the time to make a posting to the web site, your comments are very much appreciated.  John Curbishley, Web Manager.  15/12/04.


Keghead Weaver sends:  "Would anyone know the whereabouts of Jack (Nathaniel Michael) Dempsey. 'Phone no. address or email contact, any one will do. Keghead Weaver email kenruthw@optusnet.com.au mob. 0412 141 064 Thanks." 10/12/04.

From Kev Ruwoldt 12/12: In answer to Keghead's request for Nathaniel "Jack" Dempsey. He has sold up in Townsville and is moving to the Bargara area, near Bundaberg.  Will advise further when I hear from him again.


Dave Jeffrey, President of the ACT Chapter reports:  "Ron Reavley is in National Capital Private in the Heart Ward waiting to have a stent put in one of his veins. He went into hospital for a hip replacement a month ago and developed "acute angina" problems which have kept him there, unfortunately none of us knew.   Any ACT members who know Ron could visit him after querying with the hospital.  I went and saw Ron today (Tuesday 7/12).  His stent was brought forward to this morning (8/12) so he is now back on track for an early release.  If both his Hip & Heart doctors agree he hopes to go home today or Thursday. Anyone wishing to visit should ring National Capital Private Hospital before attending."  Tks Dave, we all wish Ron a speedy recovery.  8/12/04.


Subject: RAN Merchandise
The RAN Central Canteen fund has opened an online store. For those of you looking to buy RAN branded stuff, this is worth a look. It's only been up for a month or so, so obviously there's not a lot there at this stage, but I'm sure more stuff will become available over time.


Harry Dodds sends:  "Ok this is a long shot and I am calling for help from anyone. My father John Sydney Dodds (R49338) was a telegraphist on the Arunta in 1955/56.  He is in Tasmania and is terminal and I would love a pic of the ships emblem or any other available stuff for his service booklet at the funeral would also love to know of any former Arunta servicemen who may be in or around Scottsdale in Tassie. We don't have a lot of time and thanks, Harry Dodds. harrydodds@optusnet.com.au (Brisbane) 0405 355 796."  I have sent Harry a graphic of the Arunta's ship's crest and a photo of the ship taken in 1952 - if anyone else can help, or knew John Dodds or better still could attend his funeral  please contact Harry direct.  08/11/04.

11/11/04:  "Hello again thanks for the photo and crest was great sorry to say had a bit of email trouble so if anyone has replied to me please try again, regards Harry."

15/11/04: "It is with regret that I inform yourself and other members that my father John Dodds  passed away on the 15th of November, I wish to thank everyone for their kind words and help. Regards, Harry Dodds 0405 355 796."  Lest we Forget.

HMAS ARUNTA - 1952 - After major refit. 










Alan Rodgers posts the following sad advice:

Hello Members.  It is with deep sadness that I advise you that our LIFE Member has sadly passed away:

21 Coogee Rd
Mount Pleasant
WA 6153

Charles passed away peacefully at HOLLYWOOD PCU 31 October 2004

A funeral service will be celebrated at St David Anglican Church corner of Bombard Street and Simpson ARDROSS at 10.30am Friday 5 November 2004. On completion of the service the cortège will proceed to FREMANTLE Cemetery to arrive at 12 noon for a cremation service in the WEST CHAPEL.

Those of you who can attend please muster at 11.45. A notice will be placed in the West Australian on your behalf. Thank you all

RIP Charles Cole
Who will look after our victuals at our meetings?
Lest we Forget.  03/11/04.

The following photographs of Charles were taken at the 1999 National Reunion Anzac Day luncheon, Sandy McNab very kindly supplied them.  The group photo shows WA State Patron CDRE Bob Trotter, Charles Cole, Jack Mahney, Ron Tuckwell & Steve Aiberti.  A National '99 Reunion committee presentation plaque was presented to both Charles & Jack as Life Members of the WA Branch.

Sandy is of the belief that Charles was one of the original 1926 Tingira lads and paid off in 1955.  If others are able to expand on Charles' career please let me know and I will be more than happy to publish same.  05/11/04.

Charles Cole 1999


Alan Rodgers sends the following update on Yockey Shaw, OAM.  "Just to let you all know that Yockey has not been travelling too flash this year. He has been in and out of hospitals most of this year with his ailment and is finally home resting. He wishes to thank the many of his mates who have taken up the opportunity to wish him a speedy recovery with the many phone calls and cards. Please do not hesitate to give him a call or visit to see how he is if you are in the West. If you intend visiting please give him a call first. His address is Unit 43 @ 22 Third Avenue Mandurah WA 6210 and his phone 08 9586 9625 Regards Alan Rodgers."  01/11/04.


Gary Swanton sends:  "Hi All, was just checking the site for recent updates and noticed the MSO photos submitted by Ray Powell. Of particular interest to me was the snap of Ray and Sam Chamberlain who were my Yeoman / Lssig respectively. Could anybody tell me what Sam is up to these days, as he is one name that I have not seen on this site over the past few years. Regards, Gary Swanton."  28/10/04.


Ron 'Nullarbor' Baker reports:  "...and so, the wonderful adventures of Nullarbor continue. Had a good reunion with the USS Frank E Evans guys in Lubbock, Texas, which just happens to be a dry county. What that means is that you can drink in certain hotels and bars, but you can't buy beer, spirits or wine to take away. You have to drive to the next county to do that. Fortunately, the county line is only a few miles up the road, and there are a few liquor barns and three wineries right on the line. So we didn't dehydrate. Next year the reunion is to be held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in June. Anyone wishing to know any more details can email me. Shooting off to Darwin (flying) on the 1st of November to spend a few days with Bill and Bobbie Bacon, as Bill tells me there is still some XXXX left to drink up there. We'll see if we can't give it a nudge. Heading to Canberra {driving) a couple of days after I get back from Darwin, to attend the wedding of my son, Jamie to the beautiful Penelope (RAAF SGT) and will take a few days to get back to Ipswich. So, LOOK OUT, I could be appearing in a town near you..... Cheers, Nullarbor."  Tks Ron, can't believe there is beer in Darwin that Bill hasn't drunk yet - 24/10/04


Ken Street sends:  "Just found this and maybe of interest to members. Something to refresh the memory. Take a panoramic spin around GI. comes complete with latests pics and other "useful" info. http://www.gardenisland.info/1-05-000.html Cheers, Ken.  Tks Ken, an interesting link, might come in handy for those attending the comms Reunion in Sydney next year.  24/10/04.


Peter Guy advises that the RANCBA (ACT) will be holding a Christmas BBQ at Weston Park on Sunday 5th December 2004.  Please mark this date in your diaries - Peter will issue more advice closer to the date.  18/10/04.


Tony Ey sends:  "G'day, Wonder if you can help. I'm trying to find an ex flag waver by the name of 'Buri' Bradshaw. He served on Yarra around '65 - '66. He is a mate of ours (my brother and me) and have been wondering for years what happened to him. My brother was ABRP Mick Ey and I'm ex CPOCD Tony Ey. Thanks for your help. Regards, Tony Ey."  Let's hope we turn something up for you - all replies direct to Tony please.  8/10/04.

HMAS Perth 40th Anniversary of commissioning Reunion

This is an introductory letter to advise that the Qld. Branch is hosting a National Reunion of all crews to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the commissioning of HMAS Perth to be held weekend commencing Friday 15th July through to Monday 18th July 2005.

Venue: Hervey Bay RSL

An indication of your attendance and numbers is requested by no later than 1st November 2004.
In an endeavour to keep cost to a minimum for those attending, over the next 6 months we hope to be running several raffles with all proceeds going directly to the reunion weekend.
To those member who keep in touch with Ex-Perth Shipmates that are not in the association, please advise them of our reunion.

The committee for the Reunion is:-

Chairman ­ Mick Erceg Phone 07 5485 0393 email me@spiderweb.com.
Secretary ­ Terry McLeod Phone 07 5483 1337 email ocmeld@bigpond.com.au
Treasurer ­ John Rosmalen Phone 07 3348 4157 email johnlorr@bigpond.net.au
Postal address ­ Lot 96 Jamie Avenue, Curra Qld. 4570
I have also posted this to the Reunions page of this site.  27/09/04.

Ian McClure sends:  "Hi guys, just a short note to let you all know Rob Dix will be in Singleton between the 6th & 12th of October & then heading for Queensland. I have his mobile number if any one would like to catch up with him. Regards Ian McClure (sav R62777)".  18/09/04.


Royce Tandy sends:  "Good to see the tactical branch still getting it together. I played golf yesterday with ex-WOSY Rod Mclaurin (a lefthander). He mentioned how a couple of weeks ago he played in a comp and had a real problem getting his glove one. He had picked up someone else's but the best part was it took him three (3) goes before he realised it was for a right-handed player. Duh!!"  But who won the money Royce - the Sparker or the Signalman?? 10/09/04.
From Royce:  "Unfortunately neither of us as we were playing as partners and lost the match on the 18th hole to a former Victorian copper, now selling real estate on the Sunshine Coast. I guess he doesn't need a paper bag to hold the readies now. Just to show my impartiality (???) I did muff my last putt."


Mick Kenny sends:  "Greetings to All, It's been many years since I shared an ale with the comms Branch. However, following my recent hols in Vietnam where I/we shared an ale and fine food with TG Gleeson and his wife Chris, I received this poem via email from my son Sean currently on the "Adelaide" in the Gulf. I trust it russles the old heart strings as it did with me. Hope to renew some old friendships at the reunion. Kind Regards:"
Mick (& Robyn) Kenny
R 95899 JRTE 18th
LSROS 1967 - 1975
Please follow this link to read "Jack's Poem" 09/09/04. 


Sonja & Alan & Hellier send the latest on the Malaysian commemorative Medal which clarifies the dates to some degree:

With regard to the above, Allan 'Shorty Moffatt has provided the following precis from a letter he received from the Prime Minister's Office. Shorty has checked with the Office and been given permission to publish in this forum:

Mr. Allan Moffatt, RAN communications Branch

Thank you for your letters to the Prime Minister regarding a commemorative Medal from the Malaysian Government. The Prime Minister has asked me to reply on his behalf and I apologise for the delay in doing so.  Australia and Malaysia enjoy a long-standing and valuable defence relationship based on a common goal of supporting regional stability and security. The historic nature of our defence engagement its depth and breadth make the Malaysia-Australia Joint Defence Program, Australia's largest defence relationship in the region.

With this in mind, the Australian Government is delighted to accept the offer of a Medal from the Malaysian Government for Australians who contributed to the freedom and Independence of Malaysia. The Medal will recognise those who gave Service from the date of Malayan Independence until the end of the Confrontation in Malaysia.

I am advised that arrangements are still being made through the Department of Defence for the Medals to be awarded over the coming years on Malaysian Independence Day (31 August) and Malaysian Armed Forces Day (15 September) of each year. The Department of Defence will ensure that the Veterans' community is informed of the Medal so that applications can be lodged and processed for early presentation.

For further information, you may wish to contact the Directorate of Honours and Awards with the Department of Defence on 1800 111 321

Laurie Scutts sends the following reminder:  'Voyages to Vietnam' - just a reminder as promised for all Canberrans and others to assemble in the courtyard gallery of the Australian War Memorial at 2'00pm this coming Saturday the 28th August for the Canberra launch of this great book. See u all there!! best regards Laurie and Helen Scutts.  OK Lozza, see you there.  26/08/04.


Glenn Hines sends:  "Aloha, Ex LSMT Garrett Grace and I ex ABRO Glenn Hines spent an overnight onboard USS John C Stennis during RIMPAC last month. It was the most amazing experience of my life and the USN really took care of us DVs (distinguished visitors).

Here is a link to the photos that Garrett took.

Pic 0029 is with Aussie comFLOT who came out on the C2A Greyhound. He was on for a few hours but we got to catch up with him at the end of exercise party onboard Stennis again. We flew out on the Greyhound and back on a H3 helo. Got to be just metres away from the landing and taking off jets. Food was great and the accommodation was a tad better (2 berth stateroom with TV, sink) than 163 mess on DDG39. We were given unlimited access to go where we wanted but the thing is so huge we just hung around during non flying ops times in one of the wardrooms chatting to pilots and whoever else came in. Some quirky info is that the Stennis's picks are from the USS Forrestal (the one that caught fire in 67 with Senator McCain on it). It also has onboard a flag that was flying from WTC 2 on 9/11 which then flew on Stennis off Afghanistan during the response. It is now framed in the "Stennis" room.

I have some more pics that I took but they're pretty much the same."
Cheers, Glenn Hines, ex ABRO Cerberus, Albatross, Harman, Hobart ghines@hpu.edu
Many thanks Glenn 23/08/04.

Kev Ruwoldt sends:  "Will be touring the southern towns of Dubbo 31/08-02/09, Adelaide 19/09-12/10, Broken Hill 14-18/10, Wentworth 19-22/10, Swan Hill 23-27/10, Barham 28-31/10, Echuca 01-04/11, Shepparton 05-08/11, Albury/Wodonga 09-12/11, Wagga Wagga 13-16/11, Bathurst 17-20/11, Mudgee 21-24/11 and would like to catch up with any communicators, who would show Anne where the pokies are located, whilst I have a couple of cold ones and a yarn. My Mobile Number is 0407 765 606 if anyone would like to contact me. I’m only going to Barham to help former WO Sig Bronte Daniels out, heard that he is having a hard time accepting retirement, probably take him out for a meal, shout a couple of beers and lend him a few bucks to help settle him down. Will be catching up with Jack Bawden hopefully on the 11/11 and make it a real Rememberance Day???"  Tks Kev, have a good trip.  21/08/04.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt sends:  "Last Sunday I had to represent Parramatta RSL at the Blue Mountains Vietnam Veterans Service at Springwood. Brilliant. One of the best. Very big. Only problem was one of the RAAF Richmond people doing Flag Orderly was pathetic, he would have made a Chief Yeoman cry. A Boy Scout could have done a better job. Now, prior to the Service I was talking to a man from the FESR Assn and he asked if I knew a Les Church from HMAS VAMPIRE Assn, and when I said yes, he then advised me that Les has had another heart attack (or similar) and was admitted to a hospital in Melbourne. He had no further details or could not tell me the name of the hospital. I have been unable to find out any details. Maybe someone may just know, and if so, could they advise me." Rgds, Allan "Shorty". 19/08/04.


Jim Eagles advises:  "For anyone interested in the HMAS Sydney II debate. The ABC TV is putting a programme to air on the 19th September - Sunday night at 9.30 pm called REWIND.  Apparently it covers an interview with David Mearns who is involved with Bluewater Recoveries in the UK and was part of the team that found and photographed HMS Hood. They are supposed to be beginning a search for the Sydney in 2005. The latest news from W.A. is that over there it has just been announced that another group has already begun a search with 3 1/2 million dollars behind them and using a towed sonar arrangement. They are searching the site the Germans gave the WW II interrogators around 26 degrees 32 minutes south 111 degrees east. That is all I know at present. The results will be most interesting and I wish them every success, the search is long overdue for the families of the 645 crewmembers who lost their lives in that engagement. Jim Eagles, Townsville."  Tks Jim, I'm sure it will be of interest to many.  12/08/04.


Barry 'Tex' Sherriff advises:  "Having changed internet providers, I have finally been able to fix up the RANCBA SA web page, it is now at :-
Could you make mention of it in QSO The World, also in Contacts/RANCBA Chapters/SA Chapter."
Tks Tex, have done.  05/08/04.


Pat Cashman provides further information on the volunteer service medal:  "For those past serving or current serving naval communicators who may not yet know, the government announced on the 26th June of the establishment of a new medal that recognises volunteer service in the Australian Defence Force. All relevant approvals have been sought, including from the Queen, for issue to anyone who has spent six years in the regular armed forces, as would the next of kin of servicemen and women who died in combat or in training. It will not be given to national servicemen who were awarded their own commemorative Medal for National Service three years ago. The medal will be backdated to recognise past service and it is estimated that a total of 400,000 will need to be struck, with the first issue to commence mid next year. Further information can be obtained on www.itsanhonour.gov.au or visiting the media room for the Minister for Defence using the link www.minister.defence.gov.au/index.cfm05/08/04.


Shorty Moffat advises the following:  "Caring Funerals will be conducting the Service for our dear departed shipmate, Shiner Wright.  The Service will be at the Catholic Church, St Michaels, Ark Angel, Claredon Road, Stanmore at 1430 (2.30pm) on Friday, 6th August.  They have requested our mini RANCBA Banner there at the Chapel, (I will have it there no later than 1400). An AWE has been supplied. All Ex communicators who can make it, or any Ex Naval personnel to form a Guard of Honour outside when the casket is taken in.  I shall advise which RSL will be conducting the formal Service for ex Service personnel. A bugler will be in attendance. After the Service there will be a funeral procession for a very short service at the Northern Suburbs Crematorium, which will mainly be family.  THEREFORE ALL and I repeat ALL comMUNICATORS, IF POSSIBLE, PLEASE ATTEND THE FINAL SERVICE OF OUR LATE MATE. AT THE CHURCH. Sincerely Allan "Shorty" Moffatt"  04/08/04.


Vale John 'Shiner' Wright (ex-POSY)
"It is my sad duty to inform you, that John 'Shiner' Wright passed away this evening, Tuesday 2 August 2004.  I only spoke with him the other day and had planned to see him this week, but that is now not to be. Miriam Archibald rang me to advise and at this time no other details are known.  I will keep you informed of all Funeral Service arrangements. Sincerely, Allan "Shorty" Moffattt".  Sad news, Lest we Forget.  02/08/04.

Shiner 1977

Shiner 2002 Reunion

3 August 2004:  I was saddened to hear of the passing of Shiner Wright. We served together on the Duchess after she had been converted to a training ship. Though he was senior to me, I remember Shiner insisting that I take on the role of Regulating Senior Sailor for the comms Branch (he was also obviously smarter than I). Together, we ran the ship's newspaper (The Duchess Dirge) and had a great time taking the mick out of anyone and everyone. Jack Hornsby was the XO at the time (later to become the final CO of Duchess), and allowed us quite a bit of "freedom of the press". Our DO was a young lieutenant named Mark Bonser (look where he is now). Shiner had a great and irreverent sense of humour, as evidenced in the two following "General Notices" he placed in the first edition of the Dirge:

1. Anybody knowing the whereabouts of, or knowing of anyone who has ever had a 'Make and Mend' please report to the X.O. and explain in detail what one is.
2. Anyone with a good set of darts please contact the navigating officer as his fixes are not proving as accurate as previously.

I have copies of all of the Dirges that we produced, and they are full of "Shinerisms". They will provide me with some good memories.
Farewell, old mate!
Ron (Nullarbor) Baker

4 August 2004:  Two weeks ago I read that Shiner Wright was a patient in my hospital at Canterbury where I head up the security team. I visited him a number of times (many times he was resting peacefully) and introduced myself. I cannot recall serving with him but we discussed the good days and he certainly had a vast recall of all his mates. He particularly spoke of his time at Albatross. The nursing team in Cassia Ward are truly wonderful people and he was well looked after. I last saw him on Tuesday but he was with the medical team and I never got back to see him. I was amazed at his approach to life but from what I read here of shiner that does not now surprise me. regards Terry 'Nugget' Nugent.

7 August 2004 - VALE
I would like to add how deeply saddened I am to hear, only tonight (7/8/04) of John "Shiner" Wright's passing. I first met Shiner at Albatross MSO. I was crash drafted to Albatross and arrived at the MSO for watch. There was Shiner, pen behind his ear, ormig on his face and signals in his hands. His first words to me were... "OK BronnyBabe, time to get into it - go find the brew-room and make the brews!" I was soon to marry Ken "Lofty" Baird and told Shiner who quickly retorted, "Who? Grasshopper?" and of course found out that Shiner had served with Ken on previous occasions. Of course as it turned out Shiner was one of our groomsmen at our wedding at Watson Chapel. My daughter, ABCIS Megan Baird, who is currently serving on HMAS Westralia informed me through an email of Shiner's passing. She was nine years of age when she met Shiner at Ken's 40th birthday in Narooma NSW in 1988. That was the last time I saw Shiner - however, he has always been in my heart and close to my thoughts, as with all the dear shipmates' names that I see as I read QSO The World. Thank you for the opportunity and I'm sure Ken wouldn't mind if I added his name. Farewell Old Mate...Cheers Bronny and Ken. Bronny Dawson, SHAROON STATION, BOURKE 2840 NSW MOBILE PH: 0407699398.


Kev Ruwoldt replies to Alan Rodgers' call for the JRTE 1st Intake to register for their 45 year reunion:  "Ref the entry from Alan Rodgers re the first intake of JR’s (We know everything Reunion). I can remember those JR’s from the first intake, when they hit the waves for the first time, they knew everything and they could do anything. Even a Three Badgeman was relegated to the back blocks with the knowledge of these blokes. It was the start of the end?????"  I think Kev had better duck for cover on this one, all replies direct please.  30/07/04.

30/7/04: From Alan Rodgers - "Kev, Thanks very much for the interest you have taken in my notice on the QSO page. Its great to see that some "ole salts" can still read. From what I understand the Navy was very stagnant at that time and needed new blood and ideas to generate a more positive and effective service."

30/07/04: From Jock Donnelly - "Kev, I was the second intake at JRTE in January 1961 and they were already flicking the salt from their shoulders. Have a great reunion lads, I believe the taxi's in W.A. can take wheelchairs now. Jock Donnelly."

30/07/04: From Kev Ruwoldt - "G’DAY Buck, Jim and John, I said to John when I sent it to the QSO page that this will stir the pot. No offence mate, just keeping you all on your toes and keeping the lines of communication open. Regards, Kev."


Sonny Fay sends:  "I found this in my gear going back to around mar/1965... thought the young serving members may get a kick out of it if they check your site.. this is for an a/kellick, single person... with a good conduct badge... of course in those days it was pounds/shillings and pence, and married members received extra pay..forgotten how much.. was it twenty five quid a fortnight... so to you young members currently serving, its easy to see you did not need a wheelbarrow to pick up your pay.. and this is seatime pay not shoretime... Tks Sonny, and these were the days when you had to front up, salute, give the last 3 numbers of your Official Number, then pick up your pay - and be nabbed for a haircut from the Crushers (Coxswains) who did most of their business on paydays.  29/07/04.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt sends:  "As some may or may not be aware, Sydney is hosting the National Naval Reunion on the 1st August through to the 8th August, and on Saturday 7th, there is a Naval March through Sydney commencing at 9am. Now the RANCBA here will not be marching as a contingent, but all Members will be marching with ships they have served on. I will be either marching with the HMAS ANZAC or FESR Asscn. Any communicator who happens to be in Sydney on that day, please attend if you can. On completion of the march, muster at the Royal Exhibition Hotel, near Central Station for a "post march stress drink". Mine host is Nigel "Swampy" Marsh, who many may have known. Now later on that day, here in Sydney we are having our "Get Together" at the Parramatta RSL Club, organised by our very Social Secretary, Frank Lawton. The time will be after 12.00pm till stumps are drawn. For those who are not familiar with the area and the Club, Parramatta is on the western line for train service, and when alighting at the rail station, go off on the right hand side, walk thru the Mall in Church Street, and the first cross street is Macquarie Street, turn left and 2 blocks up is the Parramatta RSL Club. It would be no more than 10 minutes walk. So any serving or ex serving communicator (M/F) are more than welcome to attend the March and the "Get Together" later on. Hear all about Frank's dashing and devil may care exploits as he has just returned from a holiday in England and France. Should be interesting ?? C U . Allan 'Shorty" Moffatt." 29/07/04.


Kev Ruwoldt sends the following update on Frenchy Le Grand:  "During my recent visit to Townsville, I decided to call into Hervey Bay on my return journey to check on Frenchy’s health. He is at the Bay Haven private hospital at the moment, but is able to get around with the use of a wheel chair. As his behaviour has been outstanding recently, they have kindly allowed him to spend the weekend in his own unit. All up, his time spent in hospital so far has been ten months. During this time the number of tubes shoved down his throat has made it hard for him to communicate and also, very hard for me to understand what he was trying to say at times. He still has his sense of humour and looks forward to the day when he will be released. His residential address if anyone wishes to contact him is:- 2/82 Miller St, Urungan. 4655. Home Phone is 07-41254717. Regards, Kev Ruwoldt."  Many thanks for the update Kev, 26/07/04.


Mary Lovett from California has forwarded the posting which follows, if anyone is able to assist please contact Mary direct:

I have a few questions about my father's U.S. Navy World War Two career in the South Pacific.  My father, Floyd Estes, was on the YMS 313, a U.S. Navy wooden YMS-1 Class Auxiliary Motor Minesweeper, in the South Pacific during 1943-45. The YMS 313 crossed the Equator on 4 October 1943, west of the Marquesas and north of the Society Islands. The ship then sailed to Samoa, in the port of Pago Pago; to the port of Noumea, a French territory, on the island of New Caledonia; and then to Brisbane on the east coast of Australia. He says the ship was dry-docked in an area about 100 miles south of Brisbane for repairs some time during that 1943-45 period. He thinks the dry dock was up the Richmond River, and mentioned the name "Ballina".  My father talks about an event which defined his life, literally, when he says he was prepared with something that saved his life, and that of the other men on the YMS 313. From Brisbane, the ship traveled to New Guinea, running convoy duty, and up to the Admiralty Islands, mine sweeping along the way. The YMS 313 then sailed to Borneo, where the lives of the men on the YMS 313 almost ended. The YMS 313 was operating with another mine sweeper ship in the waters around Borneo. He does not recall the number of the other YMS ship. He says it was the senior ship in the mine sweeping operations around Borneo. The captain of the senior ship needed a chart of the area, and because it was the senior ship around Borneo, its captain got what he wanted. My father had obtained charts of all the areas the YMS 313 was expected to cover in the South Pacific. When asked for a specific chart of the Borneo area, he gave the chart of the area to his captain, who gave it to the captain of the senior ship. The senior ship went out to mine sweep, going around the island, and was blown up. My father does not recall if it was blown up by Japanese mortar fire from the beach, or by a mine.

Now to my questions:

(1) Can someone identify the name and location of a dry dock that existed during the World War Two years in the area about 100 miles south of Brisbane, up the Richmond River?

(2) Does anyone know of the incident of this senior mine sweeper being blown up in the waters around Borneo? Can you identify the number of the YMS that was destroyed?

This incident in the waters around Borneo is especially important to my father. He has a motto, "Be Prepared", that helped define his life. He is very proud of having been able to preserve the lives of the men on the YMS 313 during World War Two.

Thank you for your attention. Sincerely, Mary, California.  25/07/04



Looking for all those young kids who joined the Navy way back on 13 July 1960 and marched into the West Australian Navy at HMAS LEEUWIN on that fine Wednesday.

Our intentions are to establish a data base for a possible reunion in July 2005 to celebrate (commemorate) 45 years on. There must be vast numbers who look at this web site. Please indicate names contact addresses and or email address to me as shown below.

When details have been arranged further information will be forwarded to those concerned.

Alan Rodgers
27 Little River Cove Jane Brook WA 6056
08 9250 8449
Email: therojas@bigpond.net.au
A long overdue initiative, I hope it goes well.  19/07/04

Gerald (Joe) HAMMOND.

Gerald sadly passed away after a long illness on Tuesday, 13th July, at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.
I have been advised a cremation service will be held at the Fremantle Cemetery on Monday 19th July 2004.
The cortege will arrive at the cemetery 3.00PM.

Fremantle cemetery is located in Carrington Street PALMYRA.

RIP Gerald.

Would appreciate those who could attend to wear their name badges and medals.
A notice will be placed in Tomorrows West Australian newspaper.

he will be sadly missed by his wife Helena and family.

Those who wish to forward cards please forward to:
3 Turnbury Park Drive JANDAKOT WA 6164
This notice was provided by Alan Rodgers.  Lest we Forget.  17/07/04.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt sends:  "Just latest Sitrep or Medical condition of Keith John 'Shiner" Wright.  Saw him today, but as I was leaving they were transferring him to Canterbury Hospital where there would appear more Specialists in this field of cancer. For those that knew him as a Ord Sig, L/Sig and even when he made Yeo, he still looks and talks like the "Shiner" of old.  I shall endeavour to visit him as much as I can and keep all informed.  If you wish to put anything out, Shiner said it was okay. So for now, shall sign off. Rgds Shorty."  Many thanks Shorty, our thoughts are with Shiner at this time.  16/07/04.


Peter Godwin, ex-LSSIG 1976 - 1983.  Torrens, Yarra, Fleet comcen. Now living at Blacksmiths Beach NSW. Hello to all. Lots of familiar names on your contact list. Hope to do some catching up with old mates.  12/07/04.


David Kennedy sends: "I recognise some of the names of contributors. Hi, Jim. Can anybody say when the first radio telephones were used in RAN ships, and where? Regards, David."  12/07/04.
Jim Eagles replies:  Hi David, You get around - saw you on feldgrau and IJN for two. Some good sites around, this is one of the best. Hope you've been getting my Sydney stuff okay. cheers, Jim.
David, The navy coastwatchers were using R/T as early as 1939 as the AWA Type 3B teleradio was equipped and capable of voice transmission with a range of about 650 km. However, one source I've found tells me that the RAN flagship HMAS Australia and Canberra at Savo Island were not equipped with voice radio and had to rely on flashing light and flags to communicate with the US forces. Not even all the US ships had TBS (talk between ships) radio, and while some destroyers had it the USS Chicago a cruiser, did not. That was in August 1942. Cheers Jim (sources available if you want them). 15/07/04.


Ron 'Nullarbor' Baker sends:  "In September this year, I will be attending the USS Frank E Evans reunion in Lubbock, Texas. In Lubbock, at Texas Tech, they have a Vietnam museum at which they have created a special repository for Frank E Evans memorabilia. If any communicators (or others) have any photos, mementos, newspaper clippings etc that they would like to donate to this collection, they can contact me via email, by phone on 07 33899325 or mobile 0422 077 781 to arrange it. If you wish, your name will be put on a tag as the donor. Some of you would probably have taken photos after the accident, others may have shots of the Frank E Evans (or members of the crew) before the accident. Anything, regardless of how insignificant it may seem, will be gratefully accepted. For information, a memorial with the names of the 74 US sailors lost that day is being unveiled at Long Beach, CA this weekend. It is the only memorial with the 74 names on it. We are still trying to have the names included on the Vietnam wall (after 35 years). Cheers, Nullarbor."  09/07/04


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt has received the following request:  "On Friday I received a phone call from RANEL (RAN Experimental Laboratory) who are writing a history of RANEL and someone advised them I had done my penance/banishment/servitude on KIMBLA, so they rang me and ask for my help.  They asked if I knew of sailors who served on BARCOO, COOK and KOOKABURRA, along with anyone else I might have known who served on KIMBLA.  This is the follow-up email:

"Dear Mr Moffatt,
Thanks for speaking to me the other day and for your willingness to offer some information for our Book. The questionnaire is attached.  If you can think of anyone else who might be able to contribute, perhaps you could send them a copy. Meanwhile I'll just have to keep trying to reach the Kimbla Association in an attempt to find a history of KIMBLA. We also need to find out about KOOKABURRA, BARCOO and COOK, but managed to find DIAMANTINA on the Internet. Looking forward to hearing from you,
Best wishes,
Julie Tonurist
(Hon. Sec. RANEL Association)"
If anyone is able to assist with the above, please contact Shorty direct and he will send you the questionnaire.  07/07/04.
From Mike Allen:  "Hi Shorty, I had the misfortune to serve on the Barcoo from 5 June 61 to 2 Sept 61. I hated every minute of it and finally managed to swap drafts onto the Vampire and back up top, now that I liked..Regards Mike Allen."08/07/04.


Mike Allen sends:  "Sad news I attended the funeral of Ex communicator George Dastlik today. He passed away last Tuesday after a massive stroke. It was a very moving ceremony and well attended, Regards, Mike Allen." Tks Mike, Lest we Forget.  06/07/04. 


Geoff Barcham sends:  "Was wondering if anyone has any information in regards to the current whereabouts of Gary Mansell and Jex McNab. Gary was a CPORSS and paid off in mid 80's. Jex paid off as a POEWO sometimes in the late 90's I think. Regards to all, Geoff Barcham."  05/07/04.

From Robbie Robinson "Geoff, the last time I saw Gary Mansell was when I was a Customs Officer in Melbourne - back in the mid 80's. A quick telephone call to the Australian Customs Service in Melbourne would be a good place to start. Robbie Robinson (Currently in Cyprus with UN)." 08/07/04.

Laurie Scutts sends:  "G'day to all who may be interested in the recent HMAS SYDNEY and VLSA reunion in brissy last month.What a fantastic time it was,nearly as big as the Rancb bash in canberra two years ago,as a follow on from curbs and shorty's recent advice regarding the release of 'voyages to vietnam' at the brissy reunion, I also attended the Sydney Launch at the maritime museum darling harbour and situated directly opposite the 'Vampire'. Formally launched by David Leach VADM (rtd) some of the attendees, Ray and Irene Davis(RANCB) from the ACT, Bozo Bryant ex PO(CK)Phil and Meg HEEB EX(STKR)and many others, I call upon as many Canberrian to awaken from your winter slumber on the sat the 28th of AUG in the courtyard gallery of the national war memorial, if you served in a vietnam gunline ship/Escort ships to the 'SYDNEY' eg Stuart,Yarra etc or served on the 'VUNG TAU FERRY' then please make an effort to attend you'll have a great time, will advise of launch time of day asap CHEERS Laurie Scutts."  05/07/04.

Laurie Scutts adds to the above: re my recent advice as to the official opening in Canberra of the 'Voyages to Vietnam' Official opening at the Canberra war memorial on the 28th of August the time is at 2.00pm - I spoke to the authors Steve and Karen Lewis today and they said that nibblies and beer/wine etc would be served suggest u get there around an hour earlier, will chase up all you Canberrians closer to the date. Best regards Laurie Scutts.  14/07/04.


Jim Eagles sends:  "Just a thought - with the government giving veteran pensioners $300 and giving women who have babies $3000 it just goes to prove the words of the old song (misquoted) "it's better to f--k than fight for your country" and all those years sailors were doing their best for their country, they just weren't appreciated. Jim Eagles."  2/7/04.


Phil Butler sends:  "Isn't this a scary picture. Another Butler in the navy. He's a Greeny but that can't be helped."  "The Butlers, Mark I and II. At HMAS Ballarat's commissioning on the weekend."  Mk II is the better-looking model! I've already made comment on the healthy hair colour of Mk I - tks Phil, a great photo.  28/6/04.

Phil Butler & Son - June 2004.


Roger O'Donnell sent the following email to Shorty Moffatt (with photo) and it's certainly worth a run in this forum:  "I've registered with my wife Cora for the 2005 reunion, and look forward to catching up with you again. The Malaya commemoration Medal - I served in that era onboard Quiberon during the Confrontation - July 1963 to January 1964 - ORO Roger Michael O'Donnell R58994. The other ORO sparkers were Geoff Broomhall, Dave Jobson, & Alex Farrugia.  Would you add my email address to the contact list on the RANCB website when you get a chance? corrog@ozemail.com.au - and lastly; I've changed jobs - just when it was looking good to retire, I've been commissioned as a full-time Australian Federal Police Chaplain - have a look at the pic attached with commissioner Mick Keelty!!!!  Best regards, Roger O'Donnell."  From a Ord Sparker, to WO, then a BA in Electronics, then a BA in Theology, he has certainly "moved in a mysterious way". This is in reference to the story I sent to 2005 committee as he wishes to help if he can. He is a great hand. Shorty 27/06/04

Roger O'Donnell with commissioner Mick Keelty.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt reports:  "The Federal Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence, Mal Brough, MP, advised yesterday (Saturday 26 June 2004) that a new Medal , the AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE MEDAL, has now been approved for all those ADF personnel who have served for 6 years (or more). National Servicemen would not be eligible unless they subsequently volunteered and completed the requisite six years volunteer service.  It is estimated that 400,000 ex servicemen and women will be eligible, and may apply for this medal.  "It is anticipated that once a design has been finalised and the medals have been struck, the issuing of medals could begin around the middle of 2005". Operational and other demanding overseas service will still be recognised under the current arrangements.  Processing and issuing of operational awards will take priority as the new AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE MEDAL is being implemented. Regards, Allan Moffatt."  Tks Shorty, as you say, the letters sent and the petitions signed to fight for this award have not gone astray.  Follow this link for the full press release and the story behind the push for the new medal.  27/06/04.


Jim Eagles advises:  "It may be of interest to ex-sparkers out there interested in wireless history to know that Townsville was visited on Thursday 24 June 04 by Prince Guglielmo Giovanelli Marconi the grandson of the inventor of wireless. The Prince is the last male heir of the Italian family and was on a flying visit to Townsville and Mt Isa sponsored by Macair. The Prince was visiting Mt Isa School of the Air and this also coincides with the 75th anniversary of the first use of wireless by the Royal Flying Doctor Service. The Prince has been interviewed by the press and on local radio stations. While in Townsville he christened Macair's new SAAB aircraft. An audio interview is available on ABC radio on the net for those keen enough."  Tks Jim. 27/06/04.


Tina Amey sends:  "Good Morning, I was wondering if anyone could help me find commander N.A. Perry and his family, I lost contact when Nigel was based in Sydney in 1989, he was married to Annette and has 2 daughters Nicola and Ashlea.  It would be great to find them again. Many Thanks, Tina Amey,  Petersfield Hants England."  If anyone is able to assist, please contact Tina direct.  21/06/04.


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt advises the sad passing of Ex Chief Tel Sid Bartlett, Sid was a long-term member of the RANCBA and was for many, many years the Hon. Secretary in NSW.  Sadly he passed away this morning at the Bass Hill Nursing Home. Funeral Service will be held at the South Chapel, Rookwood Cemetery, 10.45 am on Tuesday 22nd June 2004.  Tks Shorty.  Lest we Forget.  18/06/04.


Sonja Hellier sends:  "This may be of interest to those who were involved during the Malayan Emergency and Confrontation. It was passed on to me yesterday by a member of 8/9 RAR. Cheers, Sonja."  17/06/04.


Sam Hughes passes on a couple of items of interest:  "This is a photograph of MV Delos, the newly built tanker that has been leased by the RAN to replace HMAS Westralia. The Delos will arrive in Australia late July and will be modified with RAS booms and a helo platform. Her new name is yet to be decided." 14/06/04.

MV Delos, soon to be HMAS ?


From the history file:

Ever wondered why Australian radio callsigns start with the letter V?  Of course, radio callsigns are allocated on an international basis - Australia was originally allocated the block of VHA-VKZ at the London Radio Conference of 1912.

Many of the UK's former colonies (such as Canada, Australia, South Africa and British India) were allocated callsigns from the V series at the 1912 conference.

The reason?  Queen Victoria had recently died - the block was allocated in her memory....  14/06/04


Jack Caine passed this on, members may be able to assist:  "I don't know this bloke, or what rate he is, but my OLD mate from FESR sent it to me, and I thought u may be able to put it on the QSO site, you have probably got it B4 from other fesr members as well. It might help tracing the lost sailor. Tks vm om, Jack Caine."

Sender: Anne Brock
Email: ab@aanet.com.au
Date: 12 Jun 2004
Hi, I am hoping you can point me in the right direction. I am urgently trying to locate my brother Len Fairfull. He was an aprentice at Nirimba in about 1968?? (I was only 4 don't remember well). Got married at Watsons Bay to Bobbie an American girl in 1978. Was stationed in Victoria (living on the rifle range) in 1981/82. Last contacted in Sydney in 1985,  was a CPO then took promotion to Leut. There was a HUGE family brawl- he hasn't spoken to our mother since 1979. Our mother is critically ill and is fretting over him. I need to contact him and at least give him the information and the option while there is still time. I got this website from a lady at RSL community services. If you guys can't help can you give me any other suggestions??. Even if it is too late to get him to talk to her while she is still alive, he is named in her will and I will need to find him then anyway. If you can help at all can you either please email me or phone me on 07 3261 7784 or mob 0411 079 271. thank you. Anne Brock   If anyone is able to assist, please mail Anne direct.  13/06/04.


Jack Duffey passes on some sad news:  "Regret to inform all that Tom Silverthorne passed away this morning, 9th June, here in Frankston after a long and debilitating illness. In accordance with Tom's wishes there is to be no funeral. He is being privately cremated, and his ashes later committed to the deep." Many thanks Jack, Lest we Forget. 10/06/04

Alan Rodgers, President of the RANCBA WA, sends an update on Yockie Shaw OAM:  "He is in high spirits but is still in hospital and if all goes well he will be dispatched to Mandurah (home telephone 08 9586 9625 - address unit 43, 22 Third Avenue, MANDURAH WA 6210, Adjacent RSL) on Friday (no definite time yet). He is quite happy to receive telephone calls from anyone and I am sure that they will keep him cheerful and his mind on other things. I am sure that there are many people out there who are concerned about him and would like to know how the "old feller' is going. Kind regards to you all, Alan Rodgers." (Please do not hesitate to contact me for any further information on 08 9250 8449).  Thanks Alan, I'm sure Yockie's many friends will appreciate being kept informed of his progress.  03/06/04.
Further advice from Alan on 5 June 2004:  Unfortunately Yockie did not proceed home on Friday, he will now be in there for a further two weeks. I will keep all updated.
Further advice from Alan on 2 July 2004:  Yockie is at home recuperating with weekly visits to the Hollywood Repatriation Hospital for treatment.  He is in good spirits and would like to thank all those who have called or visited him and especially for all the messages he has received.  Those of you who wish to give him a call please do so on telephone 08 9586 9625.  Regards, Alan.


Alan Rodgers also advises that John Tuke is back on the sick list - he underwent further chemotherapy last week and may have to have another stretch in the Palliative Care Unit - please contact Alan for further details.  06/06/04.

Update 17 June 2004 from John Tuke:
Dear Family & Friends,
Chemo today and with moderate good news. My PSA has reduced to 500 which is a reduction of 200 over 6 weeks. So the current treatment seems to be making a difference and will continue every 3 weeks as long as the PSA keeps reducing. Who knows what the prognosis is at this stage. The nausea problem can probably be contained with a reduction in the strength of my pain killer. I have not had pain for some months so it seems a reasonable thing to try and may mean I can eat breakfast again without the fear of it returning. Hope you are all well and that this reaches you all. Love and best wishes, John.


More than 500,000 items representing a century of Australia's Naval heritage will be displayed in a new Royal Australian Navy Heritage Centre on Sydney harbour, Defence Minister Robert Hill announced today. The centre will be built in the public access area at the northern end of Garden Island at a cost of approximately $5 million. Work is expected to begin in January. It will consist of:

* Two converted heritage-listed buildings used formerly as a gun-mounting workshop and a boat shed;
* A landscaped area for large external displays; and
* A café and conference facility.

"The RAN Heritage Centre will be an institution of national significance," Senator Hill said. "It is a major commitment by the Government to conserving and opening up Australia's rich heritage to the nation." Senator Hill said development of the centre was the culmination of the Navy's re-invigoration of its heritage management. The centre will exhibit at museum standard artefacts from the RAN Collection. "The Naval collection is one of the largest of its kind in the world," he said. "It represents our Navy's physical history and illustrates its role in the defence and development of Australia since colonial times. "The exhibits will acknowledge the sacrifice of all those men and women who have served Australia so well in the past. They will also enhance the Navy's internal ethos and further inform and educate the public on our Navy's history through more than 100 years of peace and war. "The RAN Heritage Centre will complement the work of other institutions such as the Australian War Memorial, Australian National Maritime Museum and the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust." Senator Hill said the Navy planned to operate the centre seven days a week and the public will be able to travel by ferry from Circular Quay to Garden Island. "Visitors will also be able to enjoy the historic gardens and unparalleled views of Sydney Harbour in the public access area," he said.  29/05/04.

Dear Prime Minister

I must express our extreme disappointment at your Defence Minister's announcement, and that of the Chief of Navy, that Sydney is to receive yet another Heritage Museum (Naval), taxpayer funded, and proposed to be centred only in Sydney Harbour on Garden Island at a cost of $5M. Are you aware that the Victoria Division, Navy League of Australia, made a submission for a Victorian Campus of a Naval Heritage Museum at a cost of $5M, during 2000/2001, from the Federation fund? The site chosen was Osborne House, North Geelong. Victoria has provided the most support for the embryo Australian commonwealth Navy from 1901, supplying or hosting:

* Six major vessels of the fourteen vessels transferred from Victoria to the Australian commonwealth Navy on 1st March 1901.
* The first Naval Training Depot at Williamstown Naval Depot from 1901 to 1920 and the Dockyard.
* The first Australian Navy Office located in Melbourne as Federal Capital City of Australia, 1901-1927. Here it remained until 1960 when it was transferred to Canberra.
* The Foundation Naval College was sited at Osborne House, North Geelong 1913-1914.
* The First Submarine base was based in Corio Bay at Osborne House, North Geelong 1919-1922.
* The Navy's current principal Training Depot which replaced the original Williamstown Naval Training depot is sited at HMAS Cerberus (Flinders Naval Depot ) in 1920.

Victoria clearly was the foundation focus of the Australian commonwealth Navy from Federation on 1st March 1901, not Sydney, and therefore the present proposal can only be viewed as being anti Victoria and indeed all other States' legitimate claims. It is considered that the Australian commonwealth Naval Heritage Collection on Spectacle Island should be located in Naval Heritage Museum Campuses in all State Capitals where citizens in all States can have reasonable and ongoing access. It is observed that the Federal Government has funded the National Maritime Museum (NMM) in Sydney, at a cost exceeding $25M, with no discernible effort being made by that body to establish any State based NMM campuses.

This Naval Heritage Museum announcement seems to be an unwelcome extension of this isolationist attitude. We believe that had you been made aware of the electoral implications of this action, where it is proposed that Sydney keep unto itself all these Australian Navy Heritage Museum items, to the exclusion of all other States, that this situation would not have arisen. We submit for your immediate consideration and approval the following course of action:

a. The original announcement regarding the Naval Heritage Museum being proposed for Sydney only, be immediately reconsidered.
b. It would be appropriate for Victoria to be allocated $5M, for which it had made a previous submission, and suggest that other States be given an opportunity to express their views on establishing a Naval Heritage Museum Campus in their own States.
c. That Victoria be granted the lead role as headquarters for the proposed Naval Heritage Museum campuses, with authority to consult with all States in determining the original distribution of the overall Naval Heritage Museum collection.
d. That the unique parts of the Naval heritage collections located in each State capital be regularly loaned to other State campuses for viewing by the public under a scheme to be managed by the Naval Heritage Museum headquarters.
e. That Victoria's proposition that Osborne House, North Geelong be the site for the Victorian Campus
and Headquarters for this series of Heritage Naval Museum campuses, be approved, subject to City of Greater Geelong's agreement.

Your early response will be appreciated as we understand from the public announcement that the work on the Sydney Naval Heritage Museum is scheduled for a January 2005 commencement date.

Yours Aye!

John M Wilkins RFD*
President, Victoria Division - Navy League of Australia
On behalf of the Executive committee.


Sandy McNab sends:  "Have noted a few familiar names recently on the 'Guestbook' and 'QSO Forum'. Thought it might be of interest to see what we used to look like all those years ago, yes they were called waist-lines. I believe the photo may have been taken by Pam Boothe, unless Bob Hughes had a leave pass that day, as Pam is not in the photo. Cheers Sandy."  Many thanks Sandy, a great shot.  28/05/04.

Berri Springs 1966

Berri Springs N.T. 66/67
L to R rear.
Bob Hughes, Ken Smith, Estelle Schroeder, Pat Hawkett, Carol Teather, Sandy McNab (Panama hat),  Jacko Jackson (seated in car), Phil Franklin, Bob Farr, Nigel Prout.
Seated front.
Rhonda Harlow, Bob Marnham, Murray 'Blue' Higgs, Laurie Silcock, Kim Wanstal, Tony Howard, Pam Canney, Claire Lowien.


Norm Harrison sends - "Memory lane!!
Taken about mid-afternoon following a champagne brekkie and team photo with lots of communicators and other friendly faces (Sept 1975). Everybody had to swing off the rafters in the JS Club. Shorty Kennedy had his jaw wired from a fracture and when it was his turn, he slipped, bounced 3 metres head first into the juke box!! Great time had by all (except Shorty) Cheers, Norm."  I recognise most of the group Norm, I'm sure others will also.  Many thanks.  28/05/04.

Harman 1975


Allan 'Shorty' Moffatt sends:  "Could you put on the website that I have received a bundle of Invitations for the Sydney launch of the book "Voyages to Vietnam" by Steve Lewis.  So anyone in the Sydney area who may wish to attend please ring me on 9631 8068, or as I have been invited I shall be down at Darling Harbour on the evening of the launch (1800 Saturday 19th June at the Terrace Room of the Maritime Museum) and will personally give them to anyone requiring one. Regards. Shorty."  This is a great book that will bring back many memories of life in the RAN in the sixties and the seventies for those attending.  Please go along to the launch by VADM David Leach and give Steve your support.  I have attached an article I posted to QSO about the book some months ago. John Curbishley. 26/05/04.

Steve Lewis produced a best-selling book in 2002 titled 'My Vietnam' http://www.myvietnam.com.au   His new publication, 'Voyages to Vietnam' , which deals with the RAN aspect, is now available.  In the words of the flyer "This superb 208 page coffee table publication, containing over 600 mostly unseen colour/black and white photographs is due to be launched at the Vietnam Logistic and Support Personnel Reunion in Brisbane on Sunday May 30, 2004.  Contributions from over 120 former Navy and Army servicemen have captured the essence and the spirit of every facet of Naval life and lifestyles during this particularly interesting period in Australia's social and armed service history."  You are invited to order your advanced copy by following the link to the order form13/3/04.
'Voyages to Vietnam' can now be reviewed at the website above
http://www.myvietnam.com.au with a series of photographs from the book available.  Launch and exhibition dates in various cities are also listed, as are stockists of the book. 19/3/04.


Royce and Mary Tandy have become part of the Mooloolaba culture, but its not the Royce we knew at the last reunion. Whilst at Bridge Seafood last night he informs me he has lost 23 kilos.

Tim Mills
Senior Housing Officer
Sunshine Coast Area Office
07 5475 9703


David John FRANKLIN R146576
Ex LSRO: Class 1989 (RANKIN Division) discharged in 1997 at Navcommsta Canberra.
Served: Waterhen, Fremantle, Perth, Kuttabul (Navcals Sydney) Jervis Bay, Kanimbla, Navcommsta Canberra.
Looking to get into contact with a few of my old shipmates.  25/05/04

Interesting clip from the latest edition of Navy News:

"Australian Navy ship HMAS Melbourne (CMDR Vern Dutschke) conducted hundreds of boardings during its stint in The Gulf, but none of the boardings were quite like the time they boarded the passenger ferry MV Ajman City. Usually the boarding teams found their way around a foreign vessel by reading deck names in either Greek, Arabic, or Russian. However during one such boarding in February the team discovered the deck markings to be all too familiar. The vessel on that day was the former logistic support ship HMAS Jervis Bay. After paying off she was sold to a Greek company and operated in the Mediterranean as a passenger ferry for many years before being purchased recently for operations between Dubai (UAE) and Umm Qasr (Iraq). She has had modifications to her aft deck and ramp to make her more of a cruise ship than when in service with the RAN."

Once was Jervis Bay/Australian Trader

Kev Ruwoldt advises:  "Have just had an e-mail from Jim Eagles in Townsville, advising that his wife had read a death notice in the paper for Huwie Schofield, a former Cook at Coonawarra in 61/62.  I met him on a visit to Townville a couple of years ago and it was great talking to him, remembering all the good things that had happened in our past, like the LOG, Casey’s, Hot ‘n’ Cold and the Carlton Brewery. A lot of names were mentioned that I had forgotten, particularly some of the gorgeous Wrans (Angie Vincent, Penny Broadbent, Anita Verbeek, Tony Boundy Joan Noyes and Dot Fields), just to name a few in those days. I knew he was not in the best of health, so I thought there may be a few communicators out there who may remember Schoie, his friendliness and his generosity with victuals for the night watches. May he rest in peace."  14/05/04.

Kev Ruwoldt requests:  "Can anyone help with an aerial photo of Coonawarra and Harman, taken in the 50's or 60's please?  If so, I wouldn't mind a copy for the web site also. 14/05/04. 
Red Lipscombe found the photo below on the National Archives of Australia web-site.  Now, if only we could get rid of the Chinook!  Tks Red, 18/05/04.

HMAS HARMAN, 1974 - 1RS, Wardroom, WRANS Quarters, Patch...


Trevor Percival is keen to catch up with Peter Shields and Tiny Linning during his trip to WA: "I would like to catch up Peter Shields who I have fond memories of fishing and hunting while at Harman. Tiny and Bev Linning I heard were in WA. I knew Bev when she was Bev Williams before she joined the Navy from Scarborough in Queensland. So if anyone knows their contact number I sure would appreciate it. Best Wishes to all, Trevor Percival at trevjo12@msn.com"

Trevor Percival sends:  "Hope you and Sarah had a great time in Tasmania and that the weather was kind to you. I have a friend here in the village who is building a large scale model of the Melbourne that I was on at one time from March 1960 to July 1961. He is building it for the Ballina Museum. I was wondering if anyone knew what the designator R stands for. I said it may stand for Royal ( Navy ) and I had to laugh as Mike said it stands for Ratshit as it took the Aussies 3 years to convert it into what we needed from it. I said I would try and find out so if any of our members know could they contact me at trevjo1@dodo.com.au please. We leave for Perth on the 18th May and come back on the 1st July as we were lucky to get two return flights for $600. We sure do appreciate your web site and all the work you have put into it.  If anyone is interested in a yarn we had an article published in the April issue of Caravan World about 'The Journey to Forget' about our trip to Darwin last year by caravan. Take care both of you and keep smiling.  Trevor Percival."  I should know what the ship designator R stands for in Melbourne's side number of R21 but the old grey matter is not working for me.  The USN uses CV for their aircraft carrier designator, why were we allocated R?  If anyone can help Trevor (and me) please advise.  11/05/04.

From Ron Baker:  I may be guilty of assuming, but I think the reason that the Carrier Melbourne had a pennant number of 'R' was simply because the Brits ran out of alternatives. The letter A was already in use for Auxiliaries, C was for cruisers, D for destroyers, F for frigates etc down to M for minesweepers. Not having either A or C to use for Aircraft Carrier, it may well be that R was plucked out of a hat. Similarly the letter P was used for Light Forces, because L had already been used for Logistic Landing ships. LCMs had to be happy with RPL in their pennant number. I am happy to stand corrected if there is another reason for the R. Cheers Nullarbor.

From Roger Bower:  ALL UK carriers pennants were R and 1 or 2 figures, and the deck letter being the first of their name.  From Janes fighting ships 1970-71 can be gleaned under listed pennants - eg Hermes R12, deck H, Ark Royal R09, deck A, Bulwark R08, deck B:

"There was a re-allocation of pennant numbers within the RAN on 1 January 1969. Only auxiliaries now have the prefix letter painted on, submarines do not display their numbers."
The Melbourne (ex Majestic) only had the number 21, no deck letter, whereas the Sydney (ex Terrible) had P214 (ex A214, ex R17), deck S (ex K). Hope this is of interest to my old workmate TP. Best regards from an ex RN sparker. Roger Bower, Brisbane.

From Ray Powell:  "The answers lie in the faithful ACP series. ACP something (100?) lists hull designations and explains how they work ? The first letter classifies the ship type (i.e. D for destroyer) the second and third and sometime fourth letter sub classifies the hull and it specific purpose, size and/or type of propulsion (i.e. CGN, CLAA). Ship types that did not have a sub-classification simply repeated the first letter (i.e. BB, DD and SS). This all becomes a little confusing when you start playing with Auxiliaries, Logistic Craft & Patrol Craft etc.

However, The Carriers have always had a hull designation of C because the first carriers were converted from Cruiser Hulls and the second letter classified the ship type with the letter V (French word "Volplane" meaning aircraft heavier than air. Z was used for aircraft lighter than air e.g. the airships & balloons). The third and subsequent letters again describe the type of carrier ? CVS (strike), CVA (attack), CVAN (attack, nuclear powered etc). All carriers have hull designations built on this. The RN is no different. The Melbourne as you know was a majestic class light carrier (CVL) her hull number was, as HMS Majestic, 77 but was changed to 21 when she became an Aussie.

The Romeo is a type indicator. Along with A, B, C, D, F etc. These are found in ACP something (119?), Visual Call signs for ships. The letter precedes the hull number to make up a visual call sign. So if we were at sea in Melbourne (CVL21) in company with the USS Enterprise (CVN65) and had a flag hoist or light message to send to her, we would use flag Romeo p6p5 in a hoist or flash R65 by light. (I think Ron Baker is a bit of the mark - but the R could have been plucked out when allied forces created the ACP's)

The question Trevor is asking has come about because the RN & RAN use Visual Call Signs (Pennant Numbers) when referring to their fleet, whereas the USN refer to their Ships by Hull Designators. (Rodger is correct but Janes conforms with the terminolgies of the Navies, so the POMS say R21, the Yanks CVN 65).

You notice today - all the base-ball cap for ships use the Hull Designations, even Australia - FFG02 etc.  Cheers, Ray Powell (ex-WOSY 69-90)."
Many thanks Ray for the informative reply.  01/06/04.


Trevor has now supplied some photographs of the Melbourne scale model - looks good to me.  19/05/04.



Leading on from Trevor's comments above, Sarah and I recently clocked up a couple of days sea-time on the Spirit of Tasmania III from Sydney to Devonport and return.  The trip down on Sunday/Monday 2/3 May brought back some not so good rough sea memories.   Heading down to Bass Strait we ran into a Force 8 south-westerly (2 metre seas with a 4-6 metre swell, 70 kph winds) which caused the Spirit to buck around a bit and made the ride very uncomfortable.  We got hit with a 'freak wave' about 0300 on the Monday morning which caved in the deck 5 vehicle door at the bow (there are 2 bow deck doors, deck 3 door is usually used for loading).  This reduced our speed to around 18 knots (the Spirit usually travels at 27 knots which is pretty much top speed) so we were 7 hours late getting into Devonport on the Monday.  The Spirit remained at Devonport for the next 3 days to undergo repairs, picking up the schedule again on Thursday 6 May.  As they have no real requirement for the deck 5 door, they welded steel sheets across it.  My personal opinion is that TT Lines push the envelope with 3 trips per week from Sydney to Devonport and return.  The Spirit has to travel at top speed each way to make this schedule, as well as turning around in 3 hours, and any adverse weather will naturally cause delays.  The below is a photograph I took of the damage to the deck 5 door - several cars were damaged during the incident.  The trip back to Sydney on 8/9 May went without incident.  Cheers, John Curbishley.  11/04/05

Spirit of Tasmania III prior to departure Sydney 2 May.  Deck 5 door damage - shown after arrival Devonport 3 May.


My name is Gary Johnson (Johnno) I would like my email address added to your list of ex communicators. I`m an ex PORS 1969-1989 and was a member (still am I think) of the WA sub branch but fell out of touch after I separated in the late 90`s. I would owe back subscriptions I would think. I will go to the Registration page and have a tinker. I have relocated to Corowa NSW and my mailing address is 42 Wanstead St Corowa NSW 2646. PH 02 60335438 MOB 0407 382665.  I am trying to locate Ray and Sharon Mundy who I believe were members but I can`t find an email address for them. I wonder if you could help put me in touch with them or either of them please...also now that I am back on the eastern seaboard I would be interested in any upcoming RANCBA events now that I have taken an early retirement and have time on my hands. Yours Aye, Gary Johnson.  Tks Gary, I haven't heard of Ray and Sharon for some years, I'm hoping someone will know their whereabouts and put you in touch.  Tony Froome should contact you with regard to the 2005 communications Branch Reunion.  27/4/04.

Dear Members

Please pass on the regards of the Pretty Family to all friends and mates of our late father Ted Pretty who passed away at 80 years of age last year. This will be our first Anzac day without the old fella but we remember his rich stories and fond memories of the Navy and the men and women with whom he served. Lest We Forget. 24 April 2004,

Ted Pretty (Jnr)  25/04/04.

Have been advised by Tony 'Tackers' Miles that Les Church is recovering from recent quadruple heart bypass surgery.  Les is apparently going well in the recovery phase and reckons he will be fighting fit again within a couple of months.  We wish him well.  14/04/04.


From Alan Rodgers:


It is with regret I advise of the passing of one our members, Don Green.

Don passed away early on Saturday morning at his home. A service will be held at:
Bowra and Odea Funeral Directors at their chapel,
571 Stirling Highway Cottesloe ( corner Jarrad Street).
Thursday 15 April 2004.
The service commences at 11.45am.
Those of you who can attend can you please muster before that time.
Medals to be worn if you have them or desire.

Kind regards
Alan Rodgers
27 Little River Cove
Phone - 08 9250 8449
Email - 3jolerojas@bigpond.com
Thanks Alan, Lest we Forget.  For those of you who remember Don, there is a QSO entry in June 2003 which details his fight with lung cancer and also shows his fighting spirit.  13/04/04.


Trevor Percival sends a Vale for ex RO Trevor Leutton:
"I have just received word from Margaret Leutton (ex wife of 17 years) of Trevor Leutton that he has passed away and his funeral service will be at Lilydale at 3 pm this Friday. That's all I know at this stage but if you know of anyone in Melbourne I am sure that they would be able to read of his funeral notice. I would be nice if some ex communicators could attend. Trevor's daughter-in-law Marina (wife of son Bradley) also rang me with the above details of the funeral. I was best mate and best man at Margaret and Trevor's wedding. We kept in contact after he left the Navy and we both moved to Brisbane. The following is very sad. One night after being out with a friend, Trev became too tired to drive so he hopped in the back to have a sleep. The car got a flat tyre so his mate pulled up to the side of the road at night and walked to a nearby service station to get assistance. While he was away a drunken driver careered off the road and smashed into the stationary car that Trevor was sleeping in. Trevor ended up being a paraplegic. I went to visit him many times at the hospital to try and cheer him up from his depression but his body language and what he said more or less indicated that it was a waste of time me coming up to see him. I was starting to get depressed and I had to get on with my life.
After I remarried I tried to find Trevor but no luck, not knowing at the time that he had moved to Melbourne to be near some of his children and grandchildren. He suffered from diabetes and in the end had a heart attack. He was 64. Trevor and I spent many happy hours on runs ashore when we were stationed up at Coonawarra and we did recruit school together with guys like Owen Rogers, Tug Wilson, ? Down, Dick Cantwell and many, many others. My memory is shocking at the moment.
I am sure that there would be some ex communicators living in Melbourne who would have known Trevor and I am positive that the family would really appreciate any of our guys turning up to pay their last respects. Unfortunately I am unable to attend but at 3 pm this Friday my prayers, thoughts and blessing will be going out to his family. He was one of those quite gentlemen who did not deserve to end up the way he did. Regards, Trevor ( Percy ) Percival."  Thanks Percy, Lest we Forget. 13/04/04.


Graham Linton sends:  It is my sad duty to inform you for posting on the web page, of the death of a long term member here in Victoria, namely Ken "Pascoe" Faulkener. Ken passed away at home in the early hours of March 25 after a long battle with illness. A funeral service for Ken will be held on Tuesday March 30, 2004 commencing at 12:00 noon. at the Crick Chapel, Fawkner Memorial Park, Sydney Rd, Fawkner. Many thanks Graham.  Lest we Forget. 30/03/04.


Graham Bence recently had the privilege of attending the launching of Newship Perth III.  In Graham's words:

"The launching took place on the 20th of March and being eager I arrived at the gates at 1300 and had to wait till 1330 for the gates to open. The invited guests had a a place to the left of the dais so we could see the ceremony without having to strain to our eyes and ears. At 1400 the ceremony started with a fanfare from the RAN Band, and then the National Anthem was sung. Mr Robert Salteri (CEO Tenix) started off with a welcome to the distinguished and then asked Mr Paul Salteri (GMD Tenix) to report on the construction of Perth III. Vice Admiral Chris Ritchie (AO RAN) talked on the history of Perth I and II. The next speaker was The Hon. Jon Thwaites (MP Deputy Premier) who spoke of the need for more contracts for Tenix so the experience would not be lost to Williamstown and Australia.

Senator the Hon. Robert Hill (Minister forDefence) then spoke of how good a job Tenix had done on the Anzac Destroyer programme. The whole programme came in on budget and on time. He then spoke of the three anti aircraft destroyers which tenders were being sent to overseas and local shipyards. He gave no indication that the Williamstown would be in the fore for these new ships. Local yards have to compete with overseas yards. So if Tenix doesn't have a good bid there goes Williamstown Shipyards. Launch Lady was Ms Margaret Gee. whose father served on the first Perth and was taken as a prisoner of war, after the Perth sunk After being a prisoner in the Far East for some time, he was then sent to Japan but his ship was sunk (second time lucky) on the way. He served the rest of the War as a prisoner in Japan.

Ms Gee then proceeded to launch the Perth III. If it had to happen it would happen at my first launching. The bottle did not break. They tried again but no luck and on the third try the bottle broke and Newship Perth III started down the slipway to the sea, her home we hope for the next twenty or more years.

After the launching there were drinks and food. There I met up with Ron Tuckwell and Buck Rogers. Didn't see much of Buck as he was running around trying to get Ex Perth I and II Officers and Sailors to sign his programme so he could present it to the Perth Museum in WA. The food was exceptional and the drinks kept coming until approximately 5 PM after which a bit mellow I boarded my train for the trip home to Strathmore."  Thank you Graham, I'm sure this will be of interest to others.  Many thanks also for the photographs.  28/03/04.

Launch of Newship Perth III - sent by Graham Bence  Launch of Newship Perth III - sent by Graham Bence  Launch of Newship Perth III - sent by Graham Bence  Launch of Newship Perth III - sent by Graham Bence  Launch of Newship Perth III - sent by Graham Bence

Greg Palmer has been in the wars lately, and is recovering after major surgery.  I'll let Greg tell the story: "It was a tumour behind the right eye, pressing against the right optic nerve, the carotid artery, and the pituitary gland. Don't have to have another MRI until January, and have a periphery sight loss test next week, but it seems ok to me. Anything for a couple of months off work. All is well at the moment, onto the next problem, a double hernia."  Greg has given permission for me to post the following photograph, which is quite amazing and shows the extent of the procedure. Many thanks Greg, good to see your rapid recovery.  I'm sure others will join with me in wishing Sue and yourself all the best.  26/03/04.


Tony Froome, the Secretary of the 2005 Reunion organising committee sends:  "Does anyone know the current mail or email addresses for the following personnel? Registration forms for the Sydney Reunion were posted to their last known address but have bounced:
Bron & Sam Dawson - Eungai Creek NSW 2441
Norm Old - Likely QLD 4554,
Kenneth & Leanne Baird - Macgregor ACT 2615
RJ & Sue Buchanan - Killarney QLD 4373.
If they, or anyone knowing their current address could contact me at tonydfroome@bigpond.com or mail C/- PO Box 596 Riverwood, NSW, 2210, it would be much appreciated.  Hope to see you all in Sydney next year."  26/03/04.


Les Dwyer  is revamping the Naval Association of Australia web site http://www.navalassoc.org.au  If you have not visited the site recently it is certainly worth a look and one to bookmark for future reference.  25/03/04.


My name is Sharon Allison. I am Terry Lees' daughter. I am trying to gather information to create an album for Dad's 60th birthday on Sat 10 April this year. I am after any information - stories, personal records etc. I know he worked in communications and was based at Watson's Bay and Canberra at times in his career. I believe he was a Chief Petty Officer at same stage. I am sorry I cannot be more specific as I have no other information on his Navy days. Any information that you can email I would appreciate. Thank you in advance for your help. Regards Sharon.  Is anyone able to help Sharon with any information on her father - if so please communicate direct.  23/03/04.


John Frazier, an American who was stationed in Australia during during WW II sends: "I was stationed at Harman in 1944-45 as part of 30 radio operators. We used an Australian call sign VHC and we had two circuits --- one with our navy base at Honolulu and with our navy station in San Francisco --- a three way hook up duplex - US Navy circuits, which we worked until end of WW2 and the other was with different islands as the allies retook them. Noumea Caledonia was the first, then this one was closed and another opened up, etc. My e-mail address is jorjfrazier@aol.com. Would it be feasible to place this on your e-mail list and possibly some of my WW2 Australian friends could contact me. Incidentally, I, along with my 45 years son, plan to come to Sydney for the 2005 reunion if we would be accepted. I wanted to make the 2002 in Harman but was unable to make it."

John Frazier
2407 Westwood Avenue
Louisville, Ky., 40220
Many thanks John, I hope this puts you in touch with some old friends and that you are able to make the reunion next year. 23/03/04.


Pedro & Sue Franklin's final farewell.  After more farewells than John Farnham, Pedro & Sue departed Canberra on Saturday 13th March for retirement in Mudgeeraba.  This gathering, with a collective weight of around 160 years naval service, saw them on their way.  Rear left to right:  Maureen Jeffrey, Jim Quick, Marg Beckinsale, John Curbishley, Sarah Curbishley, Pedro Franklin, Sam Hughes, Rod Beckinsale, Dave Jeffrey.  Front left to right:  Pat Quick, Sue Franklin, Judy Hughes.  19/3/04.


Steve Lewis produced a best-selling book in 2002 titled 'My Vietnam' http://www.myvietnam.com.au   His new publication, 'Voyages to Vietnam' is in the final stages of production.  In the words of the flyer "This superb 208 page coffee table publication, containing over 600 mostly unseen colour/black and white photographs is due to be launched at the Vietnam Logistic and Support Personnel Reunion in Brisbane on Sunday May 30, 2004.  Contributions from over 120 former Navy and Army servicemen have captured the essence and the spirit of every facet of Naval life and lifestyles during this particularly interesting period in Australia's social and armed service history."  You are invited to order your advanced copy by following the link to the order form13/3/04.
'Voyages to Vietnam' can now be reviewed at the website above
http://www.myvietnam.com.au with a series of photographs from the book available.  Launch and exhibition dates in various cities are also listed, as are stockists of the book. 19/3/04.

The following was forwarded by Sandy McNab:  HMAS SUCCESS sails near Heard Island. She was recently involved in the apprehension of illegal fisherman in Australia's EEZ in the area. HMAS WARRAMUNGA was the frigate that captured the fishing vessel. A wee bit piccadilly on the uppers I would say, although the helo deck crew are mustered in the lee of the hangar awaiting its return. Don't know if it is an official RAN photo or one privately taken - I assume by one of the helo crew. 13/3/04.


Ray Knights advises that Shiner Wright (ex POSY) isn't going too well :  "Just a short one to advise you all that One Of Our Own isn't in very good shape and is in need of our Support in some form or another. He is not available via email but herewith his address and phone number 8/23 A'Beckett Ave ASHFIELD 2131 02 9798 6826. Maybe a Prayer before we go to sleep to tell the BIG FELLA he is one of Natures Gentleman and that he can send /receive morse code, semaphore and read flags. If those don't fit the criteria he can rearrange his Portfolio. Sad Times Ray K."  Tks Ray, we wish Shiner all the best and hope he recovers quickly. 11/3/04.

Just a short update 16/3/04..Shiner Wright as a majority of you are aware Our mate is not in Good Shape and from what we know he is deteriorating at a fairly rapid rate . His Doctors are changing their minds daily as to what treatment to recommend so if we were thinking of giving him a call or a card or letter. Please do it sooner than later. Peter (Arch) and Marion (Mazz) Archibald are heading up to see him next Sunday 21st March. Shiner's Address 8/23 A'Beckett ave Ashfield NSW 2131, T/Phone 02 9798 6826. Kind Rdgs Ray K..

Shiner update 21/3 via Pete and Mazz Archibald. Shiner is in the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital BED 48, his direct line is 02 9515 5728. From what I have been told he will be undergoing some Radio Therapy tomorrow. From what I can gather he should be in Hospital for approx two weeks but pse be aware times are a changing everyday for our MATE.. Rdgs Ray K..


Alan Rodgers sends another sick bay report: "John Tuke is at home, with his wife Carol looking after him and receiving treatment weekly at Hollywood Private Hospital. I am sure that John would enjoy speaking to any of his mates. He can be contacted as follows:
3 Lester Drive THORNLIE WA 6108
Telephone 9459 5154
Email johntuke224@hotmail.com1/3/04.

Jim Anderson sends:  "I would like to purchase a good, old-fashioned "straight" morse key with a long shank, in good working order, preferably brass, if anyone has one that is not doing anything just wanting to be put back into service again. I'm not interested in bugs, paddles or sideswipers. I'm doing my Amateur Licence on Saturday and would like to get onto the CW bands for a bit of a last fling. Quite happy to pay a reasonable price for a reasonable key. Regards, Jim Anderson.  20/2/04.

Alan Rodgers sends:  "Can you please let people know that Yockey Shaw is again in Hospital - Hollywood Private Hospital, John Carroll Ward 10, and may be contacted by telephone 08 9346 7060. I will keep you informed as to his progress. Kind regardz, Alan Rodgers."  Tks Alan, we wish Yockey all the best. 18/2/04.

Further from Alan on 4 March:  "Yockey Shaw has had a couple of days at home and has now returned to Hollywood Hospital and changed location and telephone numbers. Still John Carroll section but now room 15 telephone 08 9346 7065 - starts further treatment Friday 5th March. He would love to hear from his mates."

Update 12 March:  "Yockey Shaw is once again on the move and has changed rooms, still in the John Carroll ward. Now room 24 telephone number 08 9346 7074. Still in very high spirits. I visited him this afternoon and he is looking forward to his continued treatment which continues with a new phase tomorrow (Friday 12th March)."

40th REUNION TO comMEMORATE MELBOURNE/VOYAGER DISASTER The HMAS Voyager Association is planning a reunion in the Shoalhaven area over the period 13, 14 and 15 February, 2004 to commemorate the loss of Voyager.  A 'meet and greet' will be held at the Huskisson RSL on Friday night, a winery tour and dinner on Saturday and church service at HMAS Creswell on Sunday. They are expecting between 200 and 250 to attend. For more details or to register contact John Hannay on (02) 9649 5477 or at Email brenjohn@tpg.com.au8/2/04.

Jack Caine writes with regard to Sandy McNab's 1963 Sig School photo: G'day fm WA. An "old" mate of mine from the April '60 intake (Don (Nobby) Clarke)), the red faced pommie, has given us the top left hand sailor as Vic Tumath, (same intake), and he picked out another few that Sandy already had. Nobby reads the QSO the world, and other Aust navy sites from his local library in the UK, he hasn't got a computer, but is interested in the RAN CB'ers. If anyone wants to contact Nobby by snail mail, his address is:

D. (Nobby) Clarke
17 Ludlow-Hewitt Ct
MELKSHAM Wiltshire
SN12 6SX

Rgds to all
Jack Caine.  Tks Jack, further confirmation that we are truly 'QSO the World'. 3/2/04

Les Figg sends the following:
To: ex-RAN personnel living in the US
I am an ex-Greenie living in the US. I am organizing an ex-RAN personnel in the US 'Meet & Greet' to take place in Morro Bay, CA over President's Day weekend (2/14-16). I am posting this message in the hope that you may have contact with some ex-RAN people in the US that may have an interest in this gathering. I would appreciate you disseminating this email broadly to reach as many potential attendees as possible. So far we have several ex-Greenies, ex-Scribes, and a LtCmdr Supply signed up. We need some Sparkers and Bunting- Tossers to join the gang, have a few brews and tell a few lies :) Thanks for any help you may provide. Les Figg ex-LEM(WR) '63-'69.  Thanks Les, if anyone knows of any ex-communicators now living in the US please pass this on keeping Les informed. 15/1/04.

Vietnam Veteran's TV Documentary.
SBS will be airing a documentary Shelley Matulick made about a Vietnam Veteran and the repercussion of the war on him and his family. The documentary is titled Bob Brought the War Home and will be aired on SBS at 7pm Sunday 25th January (Australia Day Eve). I would greatly appreciate if you could circulate this email amongst your contacts as I think it will be of great interest for other veterans. Regards Shelley Matulick.

Alan Rodgers passes the following information for those in the West who wish to participate:
A plaque commemorating the 40th anniversary of the sinking of HMAS VOYAGER on February 10th 1964, will be unveiled in Kings Park near the Rats of Tobruk memorial in Saw Avenue on Tuesday 10th February at 10.00am. The plaque will be inscribed with the names of the seven West Australians who lost their lives. Survivors, relatives, family or anyone who served are welcome to attend. Contact Sue Walker MP. 9386 3064 (from Tuesday 27th) or Kim Cass 9592 4564. Kind regards, Alan Rodgers.  28/1/04.

A pleasant photograph to open the QSO account for 2004.  In the words of Sandy McNab "Greetings from the West. Taken on the occasion of the visit to the West of Lance and Chris Sutherland earlier on. L to R Carol Hall, Joan Aiberti, Sandy McNab, Chris Sutherland, Jack Shave, Lance Sutherland, Pat McNab, Steve Aiberti and John Hall." Thanks Sandy, a good way to start the year.  12/1/04.