Vol 10

Page 2

Next reunion - 25 - 27 April, 2003.   Brisbane.




In our last edition we asked if anyone knew where “Jock” Storer was “these days”.  Shortly after the newsletter was sent out, we had a call from Roy Matthews who now lives on Qld’s Sunshine Coast who told us he was sure that Jock had passed away in the mid 90’s. Roy said he could not remember the exact details, but said that some years ago he was living in the Newcastle area and remembers reading an obituary on Jock in one of the local papers. He’s not sure, but thinks it was cancer. We remember Jock as a “bloody good bloke”, and if Roy’s recollections are accurate, it’s a damn shame. Why do all the good blokes get all the bad breaks.   It’s not fair.


Our sincerest condolences go to his family.




Well it’s good to be back on a regular basis, this is our second edition this year, and there will more to come. It’s also our tenth edition overall, we’ve been going now since May 1999—that’s 3 years. Our first edition went to 90 people, now we have an address list with 278 names in it, and the number is still growing. Keep at it people—the more the merrier. Have a look at the back page, if you know someone whose name is not there let us know and we’ll send them a copy. It’s a bit unbalanced though isn’t it, have a look at all the Queensland members, where are all the other Staters, and more importantly, it’s a bit blokey, where are all the girls….. come on girls, join up.


First up though we must apologize for the standard of printing in our last issue as it was not as good as it could have been. As you know, we don’t have access to the digital printer that used to churn out our previous editions, we were definitely spoilt back then, all you had to do was select double side print, send the file to print, and come back in an hour or so and it was all done. But we’ve found an ex-Radschool bloke who now lives in Brisbane and whose firm has all the necessary equipment to do the job, it’s just that last edition we weren’t too clued up on how to drive it.


In our last edition we had to first print the magazine on a laser printer, then run it through a photo copier to get the pages lined up, then copy it again. It was just one too many copies, and as a result in most cases the photos were just black blobs—sorry. But we’ve sorted that out, and this edition is, as you can see, heaps better.


We had the photo, (left), in our last edition, and it wasn’t until after the newsletter had gone out that we realised who was in the photo. Pictured is Kev Foster, Margaret Mayhew and Geoff Chapman, and as we now know, Geoff was killed in that terrible Aero Commander prang up near Cairns a few days after last year’s reunion. Geoff Mayhew sent us the photo and thinks it is probably the last one ever taken of Geoff. If so, it’s a great way to remember him, a gentle big happy bloke with a bloody great smile.


 Sam has now placed Vol 9 on the web site, and you can now see the whole newsletter, including the photos, in much better detail. Sam was a bit late getting Vol 9 up on the site as just as he was about to start, his computer blew up, and he had to hunt all over town for a couple of 6J6’s to get it going again, but he fixed it, and it’s there now for all to see. 


We had a bunch of photos left over from the reunion, (which was a ripper—don’t miss the next one) and we’ve included some in this edition, trouble was, in the move and the hurley burley last year, we lost the list of names that identifies each photo, so in a lot of cases we’re relying on memory and/or guessing, so you’ll have to forgive us if we get it wrong, and give you the wrong name………..


But onto 2003. As mentioned, we’ve planned to hold it over the 3 days, 25, 26 and 27 April, 2003—that’s only 12 months away. Last edition we said 4 days, but that was wrong and we find now that we can’t even count.  The 25th April is of course Anzac day, and in 2003, Anzac day is a Friday and being a holiday, for those unlucky enough to live somewhere else, it’s a good excuse to make it a long week-end in Brisbane.


Brisbane has the Anzac Day march through the streets for returned blokes and blokettes, same as everywhere else, and we plan to kick off our weekend by having all the ex-Radschool heroes join the march. The RAAF is always represented by 2Sqn, 9Sqn and 35Sqn from the modern era, as well as other squadrons that were active in conflicts earlier than Vietnam.


Graeme Benthein (left) who travelled over from Perth with Adrian Heinrich and Mick Nicholls who both came up from Vic for the reunion last March. Mick obviously laying down the law—perhaps it’s  “Now look here Benny—it’s definitely your bloody shout….”


We’ve spoken with John McDougall, ex Caribou loady who is the president of the RTFV/35Sqn Assoc, the mob that organises the 35Sqn do on Anzac day, and who are led down the street by Rocky McGregor, one time RAAF aeroplane driver, and John has invited all Ex-Radschool heroes to march with 35Sqn if they can’t find another home. Usually the march finishes around midday, and then it’s off to City Rowers, a night club/bar on the Brisbane River which is booked for the day and where everyone meets for a cuppla and to tell each other a bunch of lies


You pay a few dollars entry at the door and this includes “walk-around” nibblies for a few hours, you buy your own drinks and it’s is a great opportunity to meet with a bunch of boring old sumpies and framies—and pilots. And anyway, a mob of tired old ex-Radtechs will lift the tone of the place.I’m sure the sumpies and framies are really looking forward to mixing with a bunch of ex queer trade blokes for the day.



Q.        What's the definition of a good tax accountant?

A.        Someone who has a loophole named after him.



If you’re a returned bloke or blokette, and haven’t marched before, you should seriously consider it. We know a lot of blokes who went overseas with the RAAF (or with the Army or the Navy), and who feel that marching on Anzac day is just ‘big noting’ or just some sort of “wank”. We’re not sure why this is so, but it is a very common feeling amongst returned blokes, and perhaps stems from the reception they were given way back in the 70’s. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth.


We do know that the longer you leave it, the harder it is to get started, and usually it takes the constant urging of a mate to get you to “break your duck”. But!, once you’ve marched the first time you wonder why you waited so damn long. It’s an absolutely marvellous feeling, walking with your mates down the main street of your City with thousands and thousands of people lining the way, and all of them cheering and clapping you.


When you consider that all those people made a concerted effort to leave their homes, and to get themselves into town, find a park, and in some cases wait for hours while the lines of blokes and blokettes stream by, you really get a feeling of pride. It certainly is a different reception to that organised 30 odd years ago…...If you haven’t marched yet—try it!!


Any-way, in 2003 all the heroes can march with a squadron of their choosing, and then it’s planned that all the Ex-Radschoolers will get together at City Rowers. This is where the non-heroes and partners of heroes can meet and join in, and from past experiences, it’s sure to be a good day. What usually happens, is later in the day all the stayers head for the Irish Club in Elizabeth St in the City where blokes from the other squadron get-togethers join in and the war stories get taller and taller as the hour gets later.


We’re still working on Saturday’s day-light hour’s activities, but Saturday night will be a sit down dinner, similar to last year. As long as the numbers don’t go through the roof we plan to hold it at the Bookies Club once again, (they can accommodate up to 200) but we’ll give more thought to the drinks situation this time. Running out of freebies last year was a bad mistake (worthy of at least 3 days CB), and we’ll endeavour not to do it again. There are a few options, charge a little bit more, or restrict mixed drinks to 3 or 4 varieties, what ever, but it’ll be alright on the night. We had an open bar last time, and a few made a welter of it, but that’s fine, it was there for all. Raising prices will be the last resort as it is not fair on those that don’t drink a bucket full.


We’ve booked John Broughton to MC the night and we know he’ll do an excellent job as he has in the previous get togethers in 99 and again last year.


Last year only about 35 people went on the tour of Amberley, so perhaps on the Saturday we could arrange another tour for the blokes and blokettes that missed out last time, or perhaps those that went through in 2001 might like to do it again in 2003 (we can see Alan Goulding ducking for cover now). We’ll do some checking between now and the next newsletter to see what can be arranged, and next edition we’ll include a list of activities for you to tell us your preference.  One option is to hold a monster Bar-b-q brunch in one of Brisbane’s parks for the Sunday where people can come and go as they please, have a hot snag and a cold chardonnay and say their farewells to long since seen mates. A sick parade perhaps???


So!  April 2003 is not far off, we’ll try and get a few editions out before next year to remind you, but please start making your plans now, talk to mates, organise accommodation, get your leave sorted out, but be in it…….




Recent advertisements aimed at increasing the numbers in the Services made us wonder why the Defence Department doesn’t get some of their potential recruits along to one of our reunions.

The tall stories heard there would make any-one join up instantly……..




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