W3 Company - News


Remembering ALL Our Fallen

on-going project - collecting photos of all our
deceased veterans headstones

these will be displayed against their name on
the Company roll - see examples 

scan and email the photo here  [please do close-up photos for best detail]

link to more news beginning January 2012 - news archive

Merry Christmas veterans - webmaster [22 December 2011]
I fully agree with the sentiments expressed below by John and Annette Millar, John is a tireless 'in the background' worker for veterans, perhaps best known for his wide promulgation of 'noticas fatal' messages and follow-up funeral notices for all veterans of the Borneo and Vietnam era's:-

 We're wishing you a Christmas
Full of laughter, love and light,
With delicious holiday foods
To excite your appetite.

We're hoping you receive
Delightful gifts to make you smile,
With family and friends
To love you all the while.

We wish you a Merry Christmas;
May your Christmas dreams come true,
And when Christmas is over,
Happy New Year, too!

By Joanna Fuchs


 Kind regards and Best Wishes.

For Christmas and the coming Year.

John and Annette.

Bobby gets well deserved award - webmaster [18 December 2011]

From The Press 17 December 2011 [hattip CSM]

2Pl, we trained him well..!

feedback to the boss here...

Further:  Bob retired as Colonel of the Regiment this month, his replacement is Colonel Baden Ewart [NZ Component 1970-71] who spoke at the 40th Anniversary Dining-in.

New Book on 6RAR/NZ (ANZAC) - webmaster 11 December 2011
'With ANZAC's in Vietnam - a photographic record of 6RAR/NZ (ANZAC) Battalion 1969-70' features hundreds of colour and black and white photos taken during the war by sixteen Australian and New Zealand members of the unit.  Most were from private collections and not otherwise published.  Mark Binning was one such contributor [and I will update this comment if he cares to provide a review].  The author is Rob Laurent who served with 6RAR as a company medic.  More details on the book and how to purchase a copy is at this link.

Invitation to Participate in Research - webmaster [11 November 2011]
Maria Dorsey is a Ph.D student at Otago - "I am a Ph.D student at the University of Otago undertaking research that involves the Vietnam War. More specifically, my research addresses the phenomenon of New Zealand Vietnam War Veterans returning to Vietnam post war and how these visits may serve as a step to reconciliation between the New Zealand Vietnam War Veterans and the Vietnamese. The results expected from this research is hoped to bring a better understanding of the affects of post-war visits on the reconciliation process between former foes. At this point I am looking to conduct interviews with Vietnam Veterans who have and who have not traveled to Vietnam after the war. I would like your organization's support in locating New Zealand Vietnam Veterans who may be interested in taking part in this research."
If any veteran would like to participate contact Maria and request further details of the topic.

Facebook post from 'Abo the Cook' - webmaster [26 October 2011]
Bruce: today my new partner took me for a walk around the red zone cordon area and I must say I was gutted to see the Latimer hotel complex where we had such a great time last November, and because of that site I guess the earthquake became personal to me.  I just hope that you and your family have been able to pick up any broken pieces and carry on.  All the best mate if there is anything I can do to help please let me know. I am now living in Kaiapoi. Regards abo the cook W3.  Keith Abernathy - thanx mate, I'm fine - Bruce

All Blacks less Successful in 1970 tour - webmaster [25 October 2100]
We knew the All Blacks tour of South Africa in 1970 was on but we heard little of the games, and I remember the disappointment I felt when it was apparent they had not done well.  I guess they have made up for that many times since...!  [I'm sure Bob Upton will have something to offer...]
12 September 1970 Ellis Park, Johannesburg 20 – 17  South Africa  
29 August 1970 Boet Erasmus Stadium, Port Elizabeth 14 – 3  South Africa  
8 August 1970 Newlands, Cape Town 8 – 9  New Zealand  
25 July 1970 Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria 17 – 6  South Africa

Background from Evan Torrance [1 November 2011]
Your note about the 1970 All Black tour has prompted me to send you this photo taken by Zilla at the opening of the new Rugby Museum in Palmerston North on 11 August.  It features Sir BrianSir Brian Lochore who opened the new Museum and was captain on the 1970 tour. On the left is Ian Steffert and Grant Smith makes up the foursome - we all went to Wairarapa College.  Ian and Grant are members of the Rugby Museum Committee. [Torrance] Lochore who opened the new Museum and was captain on the 1970 tour.

During the World Cup we averaged about 1000 adult visitors per week and the feedback has been very positive.  I have been working on the database changing the records to reflect the new location of each item.  We have 40,000 items recorded and I find that I tend to read the "provenance' of the more interesting items.  We have a display called the "Rare XV" and one of those items is the cap awarded to Gordon Williams a member of the 1888 Native team that toured the UK.  Gordon is the grandfather of Maj Gen Robin Williams and it was Rob that donated the cap some years ago.

Sir Brian Lochore who opened the new Museum and was captain on the 1970 tour.  On the left is Ian Steffert and Grant Smith makes up the foursome - we all went to Wairarapa College.  Ian and Grant are members of the Rugby Museum Committee. [Torrance]

Base for 40th Anniversary Reunion being Demolished - webmaster [9 October 2011]
Authorities [highly likely to be Baden Ewart NZ Component] have announced the latest list of buildings in Christchurch damaged in the recent earthquakes that are to be demolished.  Included in the list is the Latimer Lodge, our base in November 2010 for the 40th Anniversary Reunion.  There are photos of the demolition in progress and a sketch of the replacement hotel at this link, the bottom photo is of the dining-in venue and bars. 

Noticas Fatal - 41790 Pte Henry 'Stretch' Bridge RNZIR 2Pl - webmaster 26 September 2011
I have learned today that 'Stretch' Bridge died in Kadina South Australia in July this year.  The news comes from a lady whom I was helping to locate Henry's wife for a school reunion.  Henry is survived by his wife Lorraine to whom he was married for around 40-years, and three sons.

Further details from VetNet [2 October 2011]:

41790 Pte Henry Gaine Bridge, 1RNZIR W3, Borneo. Army nickname Stretch.  Age 65.  Died 27 July 2011.  Car accident. Henry was CO Kadina/Port Pirie Australian Air Force Cadets and was travelling home to Kadina (from Port Pirie) when the head-on occurred, killing both drivers, no others involved.  The Public Funeral was at the 10/27th Drill Hall Kadina 2pm Monday 8 August attended by over 600 persons, many military (OC Air Cadets from Canberra) and Lodge.  Survived by wife Lorrie and three sons - Regards, Chris.

SIXTY YEAR OLDS CAN NOW APPLY FOR NEW MEDAL - webmaster [9 September 2011]
Applications for the New Zealand Defence Service Medal (NZDSM) have now opened for ex-Service personnel who are 60 years of age and over.  The New Zealand Defence Force Medals Office was previously accepting applications for the NZDSM only from ex-Service personnel aged 70 or over. Since April, when the first applications were called for, over 12,000 applications have been received by the Medals Office and over 8,000 medals have been issued.

Due to the large number of people eligible for the NZDSM, the call for applications is being managed in four stages, with priority given to processing applications from the oldest living ex-Service personnel first.  The new medal, which was announced by the Prime Minister last year, means that a large number of personnel who served New Zealand loyally and well in a wide range of roles and contexts, but not on operations, are now receiving medallic recognition.

“The medal recognises attested military service in the Defence Force by New Zealanders. Those who have served in the military for three years or more since the end of World War Two, and those who completed their compulsory military training or national military service obligations, qualify,” Assistant Chief of Personnel Commodore Kevin Keat said.  Personnel with three years accumulated service, for example, between Regular, K Force, J Force and Territorial service (including RNZNR and RNZNVR) are also eligible for the medal.”

Ex-Service personnel are encouraged to apply for the medal using the online form on the NZDF Medals website.  Hard copies of the application form are also available through the website and at most local RSAs who can provide staff to help ex-Service personnel fill in their applications.  NZDF have set up a helpline for people with questions about the NZDSM, if you require assistance please call 0800 334 772 during business hours.

"A Soldiers View - the V4 book" - webmaster [14 August 2011]
I am presently reading the V4 book and will do a book review when I finish but I can already recommend it based on the first 50-pages.  This part of the narrative covers NZ training and the Terendak scene in much detail and in a way only those who were there could remember.  They also establish that Lima Karaka replaced Sgt Theo Marama in November 1969 so for all intents and purposes it can be safely assumed that Lima did not see any significant service with ARU or NZ Component.       I got my copy of the book from the public library.

NOTICAS: Bill Blair injured - Bob Upton [4July 2011]
Bill Blair was involved in a serious head on accident near Weedons [just South of Christchurch] at about 1600 hrs last Friday.  Bill was the innocent party and in his car by himself.  I have just been to visit him in Christchurch Public Hospital, Room 1, Ward 19.  He was in very good spirits.  His right leg is broken just below the knee and he has a broken finger.  There is a lot of missing skin and muscle tissue around the leg break that is going to require grafting and plastic surgery therefore he is likely to be in hospital for at least another 10 days.  I am sure he would like some more visitors.

War Pension Update - Parliamentary Question by Opposition in Parliament [2 July 2011]
Check the link for an update [possibly] on progress of the new war pension bill.

link to more news from before June 2011 - news archive