Sydney – PNGAA Christmas Lunch

Theresa Hogg, Inez Hargaden, Mai
Maddox, Raglan Maddox, Erue
Stephens, Jeremiah Renagi, Jane & Sara Turner

A small but joyful group of members attended the Sydney Christmas function on 2 December 2023 at the Waterview function centre at Bicentennial Park.

Being a very casual affair this year, Sara Turner was once again at the helm of leading the day. Thank you Sara—such safe hands.

The fundraising from the silent auction of a quilt (lovingly supplied by PNGAA member Jill Worsley from Perth—thank you!) went into our funds for the six high school students we are sponsoring in the West Sepik District. We have just had a report that they have done very well this year which is so pleasing.

The Muruk Quilt, beautifully handmade and donated by Jill Worsley, is a work of art. Look at the patterns also embroidered as part of the border! The colours toned magnificently.

With the assistance of Christine Leonard, our new editor, a collage of photographs from the luncheon is featured on the Inside Back Cover of this issue.

See the September 2023 issue of our journal, PNG Kundu, for information about the students supported by PNGAA in 2023. Watch out for an update on scholarships in 2024 soon.

Canberra – PNGAA Christmas Event

The PNGAA’s Christmas event in Canberra last December was well-supported, proving that for those living in and around our National Capital, and who love PNG, getting together is still important.

Rod Miller, author of Lost Women of Rabaul, was put on the spot when asked to provide an off-the-cuff summary of his research into the political shenanigans surrounding the Australian nurses who featured in the story.

We were also treated to a lively and humorous presentation by Dr Ian Howie-Willis, author of the recently published Operation Postern: The Battle to Recapture Lae from the Japanese, 1943. What better place was it for Ian’s wife Margaret to run into a fellow teacher from their time teaching in Lae. These serendipitous moments are what make our PNGAA luncheons such great events.

Thank you, Sara Turner, for the photos.

John Reeves

BRISBANE – 50th Anniversary Luncheon of the Disbandment of PNGVR

NGVR & PNGVR Ex-Members’ Association members and guests at the luncheon

Following the PNGVR AGM on Saturday, 21 October 2023, 46 people attended a lunch at the Everyman’s Hut in the Museum Precinct at Wacol, Brisbane, to remember the 50th Anniversary of the Disbandment of PNGVR in 1973. Association President, Phil Ainsworth, welcomed all and gave a short address on the formation and history of the PNGVR.

Then an excellent lunch was served and a number of members spoke on their experiences in PNGVR, including Peter Rogers DFC, Colin Gould MBE, Paul Brown, Mike Griffin, Bob Collins, Glen O’Brien and Phil Ainsworth.

Congratulations to the committee members for their organisation of the lunch and their efforts in making sure the terrific day ran smoothly, and thanks go to the National Servicemen’s Association for the use of the Everyman’s Hut on the day and for their assistance with food and drink.

SUNSHINE COAST – Kawana, November 2023

Graham Tuck, Robyn & John Dagge, Bob Hoad, Nikki Turner

I attended the gathering at Kawana in November and thoroughly enjoyed it though, sadly, a few old faces were missing. I caught up with a couple of old identities including Frank Haviland of whom I had heard for over forty years but never met. 

John Hocknell and Mike Slough were wandering around taking photos (below). I do not have email addresses for Robyn and John Dagge, or Frank, or Tony Wright so if anyone has can they please pass on?

One very special aspect of this gathering was that Jan Sinclair came along with about 100 books from the collection of her late husband, Jim, and made them available to whoever wanted them. This was a lovely gesture.

I have spoken to several ex-PNG colleagues and we have all wondered what is going to happen to our own collections of PNG books because the number of people interested in Papua New Guinea is reducing day by day! We all think that even our kids will not be interested.
Deryck Thompson


Worked for Burns Philp in Popondetta and Port Moresby from 1980 through 1987

Leave a Reply