Radschool Association Magazine - Vol 28

Page 19

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Your say


Your Say!



Force 2030.Joel Fitzgibbon MP



The (then) Minister for Defence, The Hon. Joel Fitzgibbon MP, advises that the publication "Force 2030 - Your Guide to the 2009 Defence White Paper" is available for downloading as a PDF. If you want a copy you can get yours HERE.  



How many of you believe in telekinesis?  Raise MY hand!



John Richards would like all members of the Djinning Association to know that some of the blokes who lived in Djinnang logothe Airmans’ Blocks 29, 30, 76 and the girls who lived in the WRAAF Barracks in Darwin between 1967 and 1970, will be heading to Darwin for a get together in October this year.


Some are travelling up to Darwin via the Ghan from Adelaide, meeting up with others who will be flying/driving there. He says, “At the moment we have 8 sure attendees but we’d like more. Your husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, live in lover, whatever, are also most welcome. I will be trying to arrange a visit to the Base and hopefully lunch at the SGTS Mess


This is something different. Anyone who wishes to come along and join us would be most welcome. If you’re a Djinning Assoc member and didn’t serve in Darwin during the period 1967 to 1970, no matter, you’re still welcome to come.


RAAF Base Darwin


At this stage there is no formal agenda, with the exception of the Base visit.”


The following have indicated their intention to attend: 

  • Keith (Blue) Green and Jenny

  • Ian (Macca) McLaren

  • Mike Golden (Goldie)

  • John (JB) Barrett and Liz

  • Peter (Jacko) Jackson

  • Alan Webster

  • Jackie Raisin (the first female Trinop posted to Dawin post WW11.

  • John Richards (JR) and Cathy.

 “If you want further details you can contact me via EMAIL or ring me on 0407 454 954”.




Mark Svensson got in touch, he says "I have just seen the photograph in Vol 27, of my father Tony Svensson and myself and yes I do treasure it. Sadly my father died peacefully yesterday evening the 29 June 2009 aged 78 yrs. Thank you, it was a real pleasure to find this article and to see the picture on the screen.



Friction can be a drag sometimes.




Steve Hartigan writes, he says, “I have received the following from Eric Easterbrook: I have recently returned from 18 days volunteer fencing at East Kilmore in the Vic Bush fire area. When I left, the group that coordinated the volunteers had had 2300 volunteers go through their books for a total of 35,000 manhours/7 days a week.


Blaze aid


If you could let your readers know that there is still about 7,000 kms of farm fencing to be done and that a day, two days, a week or more would be very much appreciated. There were people from all walks of life, all parts of Australia and overseas volunteering. The group that I was with is called BlazeAid and can be found at blazeaid.com on the internet.


So if any folk have a bit of spare time on their hands and are looking for something healthy and worthwhile it may be something to consider.




A bumper sticker - "Blow your horn if you love peace and quiet."



Ian Collett wrote, he says, Hi all, I had hoped there would be a re-union on ANZAC Day this year - perhaps another time. If there's another trip to the Laverton site I would be in it. Thanks for keeping the magazine going.


We’ve tried Ian, but there doesn’t seem to be enough interest in holding a reunion - tb.




Noel Hadfield wrote to remind members of the REOA that:


  • Mid Year Lunch  By popular demand we have sought formal approval to make use of the Officers' Mess in Victoria Barracks on Wednesday 17 June at midday. Approval is pending. We can accommodate up to 108 people in the main dinning room. Subject to approval for the lunch we will also offer a tour of theVic Barracks Victoria Barracks complex sane as last year which also proved to be very popular. More details will be provided in the near future but pencil this date into your diaries.


  • Affiliation with RAAFA  No objections have been received from members for the REOA to become an affiliate membership group to RAAFA, in fact this is a comfortable and natural fit for us. As such we have paid the $45 fee and we are now fully registered as an affiliate group to the RAAFA.


  • Badges.. The committee has been investigating supply and cost for metal badges similar to the current lapel badges the RAAFA and other associations/groups already have. An indicative cost of a one off cost of $150 for setting up and a per unit price of about $6 each for 50 badges has been quoted. A prototype using the REOA log is being sought to share with you and to gain interest.


  • DVA grant application.  A community grant has been lodged with the DVA for about $9,000 to purchase necessary office equipment for use by the REOA. The grant is currently with the Minister and we expect to hear whether we have been successful or not within the next few weeks.


  • Proposed tour of RMIT building 9. A tour/visit to RMIT has been proposed as we feel there would be a high level of interest given the large number of REOA members who would have undertaken some of their initial technical training at RMIT either as an apprentices or cadet. Initial contact with RMIT has been very positive. The committee will explore this further and seek interest for such a visit later in the year.


We heard from Michael Butcher who is an ex Tels Tech from 1TMT, he says, Hello there, read your article on James "Scotty" Potter just now. As a former member of the infamous "Rebound" band I would like to contact him. Currently my wife and I are travelling around the country for 12 months or so and we would like very much to catch up with him when he visits Australia. We will be back in Perth around December this year. I have incriminating photos of the band featuring Scotty, Ron Clayton, Peter Van and myself. Hope you can help, Regards.



Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.




We also heard from Wally Jolley, he says,  “Dear Radschool Association, My name is Wally (I will go to Wally JolleyCharleville to do the engine change because it will keep me off the booze) Jolley (Elect Fitter - 38 Sqn).


Your coverage of Laurie Lindsay was cute and accurate; and I picked up on a few things about his sporting prowess that I hadn’t known before, although I'm sure he would have told me if I’d have asked. Laurie was my avionics boss at 38 Sqn when I was there (did TPNG and Smartra). It was the days of the real RAAF with many a hard day followed by many aJohn Donohue and Ted Strugnel hard session after hours. There were a lot of characters about at the time; John (Porky) Donohue, Ted (the toe) Struggnell, (right) and who could forget “Throbber” (I can weld any metal, except blue metal) McMullan.


One night, over the road from Richmond, at Ma's hotel, we managed to remove half of Laurie's moustache; we also introduced Laurie to faggot racing; which he seemed to enjoy, but which he had to deny when the CO questioned him about this strange practice the troops were getting up to on the second floor of the single's men’s block.


The CO reckoned he must have known something about it as we kept singing "Hooray for Laurie, hooray at last, hooray for Laurie - he's a horse's xxxxx.   


I'm currently working at RAAF Laverton and one of the Rads bods here is Robert (Bugs) Rose and he pointed out my coverage in the Rads Association. I have since read through most (which I think are well presented); and IBroughton and Benneworth was sad to see my old Rad mate Jock Storer (from 77 Sqn Butterworth days) had passed away. Good to see a few others, ie Sticks; and those terrible pair Broughton and Benneworth (left). I catch up with John and Trev on Anzac Day in Brisbane. Have to go back each year so Trev can remind me what we talked about the year before and how to get along with DVA. It is a great day in Brisbane; and the crowd really gets into it.


On page 5 of Vol 23, I think the Sarge in the front row, on the left on Photo 1982 St Louis; is an Equipo, Laurie Taylor.  Laurie now lives in the USA. 


When I was in Vietnam, they reluctantly let Porky, Ted the Toe and me go for a bit of R and R in Butterworth. Well the trip over was fairly uneventful except the port engine kept back firing a bit (not exactly what you want to hear when you’re 8½ thousand feet up). Anyway, we got to Butterworth OK and immediately got stuck into trying to fault-find that narky engine. While we rolled out the stands the rest of the group were waiting around as I had the expertise and the knowledge of where the best places were to go in Penang for one or six and a bit of fun. I’d foxed the place out pretty well when I was there in 1967-69 with the Mirages. Well the normal things were checked like the HT leads to the Maggy etc; and I took off the front cover of the maggy to check the insulation on the primary lead as the original insulation used to rub through and short out to the body. Anyhow, the insulation was the upgraded type and looked OK.


Just at this point some one bumped the prop, and luckily I noticed that the maggy breaker cam didn’t move. Strange I thought; and we re checked; yep did not move. So I took out the Maggy and bingo, there was the problem. Turned out the internal drive in the engine for the maggy was bung. Result?? engine change for surePenang Ferry and a couple of extra days in Penang looked very much on the cards. We sent off an AOG to Vung Tau, but when the Engo saw who was on the flight, namely, Porky, Ted the Toe and me, he didn’t believe us and sent one of the drivers down to check us out; obviously he thought we were pulling a stunt (What would they have known anyway??).


Anyhow, the engine change got the go ahead, we closed the cowls, hit the tub, bunged on the clean clobber and onto the ferry and into Penang we went. A few days after, over came the replacement engine; with the SENGO, WOE and our top sumpie, Ian “Beatle” Bailey. We finished the engine change and then back to Vung Tau we all went.


Anyhow, you have a great site and I enjoy having the read; and at least catching up on a few of the Rad guys I have enjoyed working with. All the best.



Trev Sanderson, who now lives in NZ, wrote, “As Course Mum of NO 4/87 SERGSUPMGMI Course 20JAN87-27FEB87, I can fill in the blanks


Superman course






This was my first course as a Superman instructor and they were a fine bunch till the last night – but what happens in the boozer stays in the boozer. Dave Lugg


As a result of the photo appearing in your wonderful Radschool Magazine I have had contact from friends I have not heard from for years. 


Finding this site when it has a history of 27 Vols and started in May 1999 up April 2009 it has provided me with a few weeks of reading and seeing names that I served with and memories flooded back– like picking up a piano that John Broughton had purchased at an auction and Stu Walters coming along to help lift it into the Ute, the piano was full of white ants and parts of it crumbled as we lifted it into my Ute at Richmond in the early 70s or when Dave Lugg (right) moved out of his rental at 4 Hobart St, Richmond and he lined me up to move in, he didn’t tell me at 7.00am every Sunday the C141 would pass over and the whole house would shake and rumble. (I checked it out on Google, the house is still there) a lot more memories are there but I will save them for another day. Cheers     


NB:   Well done on your magazine, it is a beauty!”



Ron Ledingham has been working with Veterans' Affairs to obtain a grant to assist REOA's activities. Ron's efforts have been successful, as the attached self-explanatory message shows. He is now trying to arrange for the Minister or his representative to present the cheque at the REOA luncheon at Vic Barracks on 17 June 2009.


From: Gavin Marshall, (Senator)

Sent: Friday, 15 May 2009 3:18 PM

Subject: Veteran and Community Grants


Dear Squadron Leader Ledingham


It is my pleasure to congratulate the RAAF Engineers Officers' Association as a successful applicant in the Veteran and Community Grants program.


The Minister for Veterans' Affairs, Alan Griffin, has approved a grant of $8,994 for the RAAF Engineers Officers' Association which will help you to purchase computer equipment to develop a website and produce a newsletter. It will also assist you to purchase equipment to aid in your presentations.


Veteran and Community Grants provide an important source of funding to local organisations for projects and initiatives that support the health and well-being of the veteran community.


Through Veteran and Community Grants, the Australian Government is supporting hundreds of projects across the country, which provide practical support to our veteran community.


These grants provide project funding to local organisations to meet the needs of veterans, war widows, widowers and their dependants.  It is important to note that in many instances, these projects also benefit the wider community.


Projects funded by Veteran and Community Grants include promoting healthy lifestyles, community activities, helping veterans live independently at home and carer support. Your dedication to maintaining the welfare of our local veterans is greatly appreciated, and I am pleased to be able to recognise your efforts with a Veteran and Community Grant.


This is a valuable project that will be of great benefit to the veteran community here in Melbourne. Senator Gavin Marshall


I congratulate you on your organisations success and I wish you all the best with this project.


Yours sincerely

Gavin Marshall

Labor Senator for Victoria




I tuned into the ABC to try and get some info on the Swine Flu epidemic.

All I got was crackling!




Noel Hadfield advises that the REOA committee is looking into the introduction of a lapel badge for members. He says “As our logo is quite a complex shape, it would be very expensive to provide a metal badge to this shape. A more economical approach is to use a standard badge style such as a round 25 cm diameter style and print our logo on it. We have been discussing the project with Millers Badges and this LINK shows in colour some further examples of the badge designs that are commonly available from Millers. Based on the response from Millers, we estimate that such a badge would cost members about $8 each, plus pack and post where applicable. The latter could probably be provided free in the Melbourne area. To help with gauging interest in the proposed badge, please let me know when convenient if you would like to purchase a badge on the terms indicated.”



Ernie Gimm sent us this, he says “Following in the footsteps of John Richards' initiative for a Darwin reunion for the 1967-70 era, I am testing the water for a similar venture for some of us earlier types, the 1959-60 period. The idea actually came out of Ken Hillebrand's grey-drive a couple of weeks ago and we have been exchanging recollections of names we could muster from our time.  So far, we have come up with the following list:

Tony Smith, Brian McDonald, Lester Cook, Wally Hull, Ron Usher, Bruce Waghorn, Lofty Carthew, Lofty Madison, Billy Budd, Merv Groves, Bob Harrison, Shorty Broadhurst, Jim Robbins, Mike Shannon, Des Grey, Clarrie Kitzelmann, Ollie West, George Kleinig, Darryl Corbett, Rod Lohse, Paddy Gardner, Jack Carrick (?), Ken Parish (MTD), and others who have slipped my failing memory. 


Many of the old identities may be no longer with us but it would be good to reach as many of the survivors as possible and try to stir some interest in trekking back to the "Chew and Spew" and the "Hot and Cold" bar, in the unlikely event that they still exist.

I reckon we could settle for a decent dinner and a tour of the modern Darwin (with skyscrapers, even).

Anyone who is interested can let me know and we can take it from there.  2010 is the target (during the dry) as this year is a bit congested.  Pass the word around anyone you know who was in the old Sigs Hut 29 in our era.


Anyone interested can email John Stewart at jontish@tadaust.org.au or Ken Hillebrand  at kenhillebrand@tadaust.org.au




Steve Hartigan has received the following request  “My name is Neil Roche, and I served with 3RAR SVN, from 1967 to 1968. I have video footage of a Huey crew (not sure if it's 9 Sqn or not), and written on the back of the pilots helmet is either KUNNANARA KID or KOOKABURRA KID, and I’d like to be able to id the crew. Would any of your members be able to assist in this matter?” If you can throw some light onto this please get in touch with Neil direct at neilandsueroche@bigpond.com .


We’ve also received the following request for information from Gary (Gus) Parker, who is the President of the National Vietnam Veterans Museum at Phillip Island. Gary says “Our Models Curator, John Loughman is chasing information on a Huey A2-1025 \"Ned Kelly\". Would you please see if any of your fellows has any information on it and contact both John and myself either way.  If you can help please send your info to  jjayel37@iinet.net.au



Ernie Gimm says he received the following request was received from Ian Priddy, who is the son of Ivan HAust Active Service Medal 1945-75 Priddy “My fathers name was Ivan H Priddy. He served in Malaya and Hong Kong that I know of. He held the Active Service Medal 1945-1975. His service number was A12410. He was present when the Governor General’s banner was presented in 1991 in WA, I think it was, and attended reunions as long as he could. He passed away in May 2007.  Any other information you could pass on to me about his service time would be greatly received.

Thank you”


Ernie says he recalls the name but cannot assist Ian with any further information.  He’s hoping that some of the older ex 3TU members may be able to assist.  Ian's email address is ianprid@hotmail.com  If anyone can assist, could you please add Ernie’s email address (gimms@internode.on.net) as a cc to your reply so that he can have his dad's name added to the  Honour Roll if applicable.




Bob Richards says he just joined the Association after coming across the Radschool website - better late than never he reckons. We agree!!.


Bob was on 62 RTC at Laverton back in 1972-74 and about half way through the course, due to low numbers, they joined 62RTC and 63RTC course together and called the combined course 63RTC. He remembers the WOD at Radschool at the time was WOD Nothard.


Bob says he remembers an incident at Radschool, around 1974, as it was quite funny at the time. It involved a message being painted in black on the footpath, near the WOD’s office!  it read “It’s nothard to be an a*se” 


Maybe someone else remembers this.


A major investigation was mounted to find the culprits, but Bob doesn’t think they were ever found though nearly everyone was interviewed by the Super Sleuths to see if they knew anything!


 RAAF base Williamtown


After Radschool he spent some time at Willytown with 481 Maintenance Sqn (1974-1979). He says if he can find any old pics he will send them in.6BM8 Valves


Bob says, “I have always wondered what ever happened to those 4 valve superhet receivers we all (Radtech A’s) had to build, tune and demonstrate as working. Can anyone remember the circuit? I can’t remember if it used 7 pin valves 6BE6/6BA6 or 9pin 6EA8/6BL8 in the RF stages but I’m sure the audio stage was a 6BM8.


I’m getting old!.”



Ted McEvoy says he received the following from Neil Harvey who is making a film. He says. “I’m looking for some footage of any Chinook or Huey helicopter that has been filmed from the ground flying over. Alternatively, if anybody does know of period helicopters flying in the next few months I am willing to travel and film it.


The film is called Contact. It is loosely based on a poem written by an Australian soldier who served in Viet Nam and, like many, returned with PTSD. It is not a political film, nor is it naively an anti-war film, it is simply about what happened to a generation of young men. The film has been made by a group of committed young people over the past year and we are hoping to have it ready to present to distributors around September/October. We've shot in Queensland, Northern NSW, and even some stuff in Viet Nam. Although we have quite limited funding, we have worked hard to try to be as accurate as we can to the period and details and want nothing more to make it as realistic as possible”.


If you can help please contact Neil direct on the following email. Neilnfharvey@yahoo.com.au



Bob Irvine got in touch. He says “Greetings, I went through RadSchool at Laverton on 83RTC and was then posted to No. 1 AD. I was then posted to CMRTF (Later renamed Radar Squadron) and was involved in ATC Radar maintenance.


Sadly after all these years my training information has faded and finally I wish to go through TRA to get trade recognition for my Electronics training.


Would any of your members have or know where I can get a copy of the syllabise that was used from 1975 to 1977.  (If you can help, let us know and we’ll pass on the info to Bob. – tb)



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