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New Zealand Permanent Force Old Comrades' Association

Newsletter No. 1 July 1968


Annual General Meeting - 29 March 1968

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Officers Elected
Major-General Sir Stephen Weir, KBE, CB, DSO (late RNZA)
Captain AJ Baigent, MBE
Vice Presidents (6)
HCJ Penrose
WL Ruffell (Auckland District Representative)
JG Gilberd (Hawke's Bay Representative)
JLO Rowe (Taranaki District Representative)
FT Fitzgeorge (Canterbury District Representative)
RJ Healey (Otago District Representative)
Note It will be seen that all the District Representatives were elected Vice Presidents as well.
Brig CJS Duff, DM Chichton, J O'Grady, J Rose, HJ Satchell, GD Standen, AD Warden, LW Woods.
GT Stagg
Life Members
 743 OP McGuigan
1059 F Penrose
1152 PJ Kivell
1140 L May
1195 JLO Rowe
1378 JP Thomson
The Receipts and Expenditure accounts and Balance Sheets as attached to the circular of March 1968 were adopted. A considerable time was spent on discussing ways to improve membership and stimulate the interest of existing members.

Last Post (11)

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Notifications received since the March 1968 circular:
LtCol RB Smythe (*) on 24 Jun 68 at Wellington
909 H Cox
986 J Sweeney 21 Nov 65 at Auckland
1051 LH Shearman 27 Jan 67 at Auckland
1055 G Klee (*) 14 May 68 at Paraparaumu
1092 TH Dyer at Auckland
1108 G Bergeb 31 May 65 at Auckland
1110 MJ Connolly 1966 at Temuka
1266 AT Gatrell (*) 10 Apr 68 at Palmerston North
1356 HC Dumper 11 Jul 67 at Auckland
HAF Jamieson 1963 at Auckland
* Floral tributes were sent on behalf of all members to the funeral services of these Old Comrades.


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The roll, which dropped to 197 through deaths, has risen again to 210 with new and revived memberships. Of this total, 105, or only half, enjoy full membership, the remaining half being unfinancial members. Our target is to have 100% with full membership at all times. The subscription is not large (only 50 cents a year), so rally round if you are one of the letter category and show your continued interest in the Old Comrades Association, by paying your arrears of subscription without any further delay.
If you meet an ex-NZPM, ex-RNZE (pre 1907) or ex-RNZA comrade, check with him that he is on the roll and received this newsletter. We know from our records we are far from complete throught the loss of personal record sheets and your friend could be one of those with whom we have lost touch. Make sure he drops a line to the Secretary and asks to be reinstated.
We also know that there are hundreds of ex-RNZA who have the necessary service qualification to join up but have never done so. If you know of any, try and presuade them to join up NOW. It's up to all members to "sell" the Association to non-members.
In letters covering subscription remittances, a large number of members have expressed their pleasure that the Association was not "dead". No Association can exist without active participation of all its members. We don't mean by just paying subscriptions, although this is a help and better than nothing, but do give us news of yourself and other Comrades. Dig up new mwmbers and encourage those who have dropped out to rejoin. Whenever you meet an eligible friend or acquaintance, talk "Old Comrades ssociation" to him and ensure that he is active as well as you.
Incidentally, a large proportion of our members appear to be shy about their ages, as the request for the year of birth to be noted on subscription accounts produced a poor response. The rewal old hands seemed proud of their ages but those known to be in the 45 to 65 bracket seem loath to admit that they are getting old! If you have not already given us your year of birth, please include this information for the record next time you write in.

Contact Lost

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Circulars sent out in March 1968 to the following, at eh addresses given have been returned endorsed "Gone - No Address".... [Names omitted on website for privacy.]

News of Old Comrades

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Some random jottings which we hope will be of interest to members:
Members Overseas:
Col J (Blackie) Burns who is with the Defence Liaison Staff in London returns to New Zealand later this year. His place in London is being taken by LtCol HL (Howard) Jones who will become a full Colonel when he takes over in London.
LtCol RH (Bob) Smith is the present Commander of the New Zealand Army Force in Vietnam where 161 Battery is upholding the best traditions of the RNZA.
LtCol VG (Vin) Skilton who was seconded to the Malaysian Ministry of Defence in Kuala Lumpur, has just returned to New Zealand and is retiring to live in Mangakino.
Maj DR (Don) Kenning and PRR Rutherford are both serving with HQ NZ Army Force FAR EAST in Singapore.
1185 AE (Bert) Shadbolt Trentham, has had a spell in hospital recently but is back home again recuperating and his laughter is as infectious as ever.
1195 JLO (Jim) Rowe, our New Plymouth representative has finally retired but is involved with numerous organisations to absorb some of his excess energy. With hardly a grey hair in his head (or his moustache) he looks at least 20 years younger than his 80 years.
1378 JP Thomson (83) is in the Old Folks' Ward, Wairoa Hospital. He asssures us that his condition is 'fair'. If you are passing by do drop in and see him.
CB (Curly) Hayes lives at [omitted for website] and is enjoying good health and the sea air. If you call in, ther will be a welcome for you.
1406 N (Nelson) Oram, Auckland. Recently retireds for the third time, is a frequent visitor to the Fort Cautley Sgts Mess, Narrowneck.
1487 W (Bill) Langevad and 1492 AWN (Alf) Heyward have both deserted Wellington for Napier. What's the attraction?
1512 ER (Did) Hancock, who since he was posted to the Retired List many years ago continued on at HQ SMD as a civilian, will be retiring for the second time in a couple of months. His many other interests will ensure that he doesn't vegitate.
1608 FT (Frank) Fitzgeorge who was for many years an active OCA Committeeman, moved from Wellington to Christchurch a couple of years ago. Now he is the Canterbury representative we look forward for more news from the Garden City, where we have sadly missed his predecessor, the late Ted Coleman.
1638 JD (Doc) Bennett is a successful member of the New Plymouth Yacht Club.
1664 RH (Bob) Stade, Oamaru. Bob has had a rough time in recent years and is now nearly blind. He is unable to work and the doctor has forbidden him to do any reading so time hangs heavy on his hands.
1690 GE (George) Sutherland, New Plymouth, who had a bad time with rheumatism and was in hospital for an operation is now 100% fit again. Although he is in his mid-fifties he is in the process of learning to fly. What next!
1754 WL (Wally) Ruffell, recently appointed our Auckland representative, has put his shoulder to the wheel in his usual vigorous manner and has roped in some serving RNZA personnel as new members, including his son, to make them the only father and son currently enjoying membership.
1872 PM (Peter) Cummuskey is now representing his firm in Singapore.
Who said "Dead Marines"?
The retired list of the Regular Force seems to be engaged in a North Island takeover bid for the Associated Bottlers Company as the following appointments as managers will show:
Auckland    1693 L (Les) Rawley (ex RNZA and OCA member)
Napier    JGR (Gordon) Morley (ex RNZA and OCA)
New Plymouth  WA (Bill) Morgan (ex RNZA)
Palmerston North  1669 WJS (Jack) Tavendale (ex RNZA)
From our knowledge of this team they are quite capable of emptying a few bottles themselves to keep their business returns up.

Volunteer Artillery Centenials

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Last year both Wellington (D Battery) and Christchurch (E Battery) celebrated their first 100 years of Artillery with suitable functions. In Wellington, where in 1877, D Battery members man-handled a 24-pr muzzle loader to the top of Mount Victoria for use as a noonday signal gun by the City Council and to earn £25 for Battery funds, a function was held at the gun site adjacent to the Lookout. As it took seven days of "before and after" work effort to get the gun to the top of the hill, the Battery marked the occasion by firing 7 rounds from the gun, one for each day. One hundred years to the day from the day D Battery was formed, the only surviving RNZA unit in Wellington, 22 Bty, 16 Fd Regt fired another seven rounds at noon, the fire orders being given by the Mayor of Wellington. This time a different equipment was used for each round, (1) the original 24-pr (2) 18-pr Mk 1 (3) 4.5-in Howr (4) 3.7-in Pack Howr (5) 25-pr Mk 2 (6) 3.7-in AA Gun and (7) 105-mm Howr. That afternoon the local Gunner fraternity adjourned to the Princess Hotel, Molesworth Street, where 100 years before the meeting was held when the momentous decisiion was made to form a Volunteer Artillery Unit (D Bty). In the evening a social function was held in the Overseas Terminal Lounge and the following day, a Sunday, there was a Memorial Service in the Hall of Memories, Buckle Street, where a permanent wreath was laid under the Regimental Badge in the RNZA Chapel. The old Princess Hotel is due to be demolished shortly to make way for a new access road.

Benevolent Fund

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Remember that the Benevolent Fund is not a "hoard", it is there for the benefit of any Old Comrades who are genuinely in need. If you know of any such cases, please bring them to the notice of your District Representative, or if there is no representative in your locality, please advise the Secretary/Treasurer, giving full details of the case.

Bank Account

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The Association banks with the Post Office Savings Bank and does not have to pay the 3c lodgment fee required by trading banks. To those who thoughtfully added the 3c to their cheques, thank you for the thought and the donation.

Lapel Badge

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The Association's lapel badge, the familiar Gun Badge in gilt with the blue anamel scroll below and bearing the words "Old Comrades Assn" was temporarily out of stock. The new supply of badges has just come to hand and will still sell at the old price of 50c.

News of Old Comrades

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We should like to have more "Random Jottings" from members. It is up to members to give us this "ammunition" - we cannot make it all ourselves.
For and on behalf of the Executive Committee,
GT Stagg

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Page last updated: April 20, 1999