9 February, 2024
Ceremony to recognise five soldiers
FIVE Tablelands soldiers will be recognised at a ceremony this Saturday to mark the 50th Anniversary since the last National Serviceman marched out from Australia’s fourth conscription scheme.
Abolished on 5 December 1972 by the newly elected Labor Government, those called up as 20-year-old Australian men in what turned out to be the last call-up commenced their service on September 27, 1972.
After completing their 18 months of training, they were discharged on 14 February 1974. The date has since been chosen to represent National Servicemen’s Day.
Commemorated each year throughout Australia by the National Servicemen’s Association (NSAA), a Tableland service will be held at the Tolga Salvos Church, Kennedy Highway at 1.30pm this Saturday.
The five Tableland soldiers that served in Australia’s third conscription scheme to be recognised are Ian Adcock, Mareeba (formerly Laura) and Wally Crear, Montville (formerly Tolga), Ian “Doc” Martin OAM of Atherton, and two Malanda residents Edward (Ted) Rolley and Kevin Plummer.
One indigenous supporter member, Rosena Anning, will also be recognised.
Families of the former soldiers will be present to be part of the dedication. They will pay their respects by placing a poppy on a family plaque manufactured in their honour which will then be permanently erected on a Memorial Wall in the Nasho shelter at Rocky Creek War Memorial Park.
The dedication service will be performed by Branch Chaplain, Rev’d Christine Grimwade of Yungaburra. Guest speaker will be Branch Patron Ray Byrnes OAM who was recently awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for services to the community of Yungaburra.
Ray, as a 1955 Wacol Nasho, will speak about his experiences at Australia’s largest National Service training establishment. As one of 1,500 soldiers, Ray will elude to how he won the Nasho Marksman Cup for his intake.
Afternoon tea will be served by the Salvos following the ceremony. Former Nashos including Alternative Nashos who served for six years in the local CMF units are welcome to attend the service at 1.30pm and join the association.
Anyone seeking further information about this event, medal or welfare entitlements or having National Servicemen recognised at future ceremonies can phone secretary Terry Edmondson on (07) 4095 4154 or email firstname.lastname@example.org