Vale December 2004

BRAMMELL, Jack |  CAVANAGH, Linden George (Jim) |  COLLINS, David Stanley |  COLLINS, Reginald Williams |  CROPP, Harold |  GALLEN, Michael (Mick) Richard |  GREVILLE SMITH CBE, John (The Hon.) |  HART, John (Jack) Joseph |  KANE, Terry (Thomas Joseph) |  MATTINGLEY AO, Keith |  PULSFORD, Robert Leonard |  STEWART, Robert George |  TOHIAN QPM, Paul | 

 

Jack BRAMMELL (15 October 2004, aged 92 years)

Further details next issue.  

Linden George (Jim) CAVANAUGH (4 March 2004, aged 86 years)

Born at Murwillumbah, Jim worked in a forestry survey gang in the Lands Dept all over Queensland before being recruited to go to East New Britain by the Intelligence for his tracking and bush skills. There he worked for the Lands Dept as a surveyor, a cover for his intelligence work for the Australian Govt looking into the activities of the German missionaries in 1938. When war started, Jim joined the NGVR and was attached to several units. He was a major player in the successful NGVR raid on Salamaua in June 1942 (see page 30, Una Voce, December 2004). After the war, Jim chose to work in the newly formed Office of Forests in NG rather than in intelligence, managing the government sawmill at Keravat to produce the timber to rebuild the town of Rabaul. He married on Boxing Day 1946 and brought his new bride, Pat (Masters) to Keravat in early 1947 to live in the bush in a ‘paper’ house. Moving to Bulolo in 1949, their daughters were born in the Wau Hospital. The years in Bulolo saw Jim start the survey of the PNG forestry estate that took him into the bush for months at a time and which would become his legacy to the people of PNG. The family moved to Port Moresby in 1959 where Jim continued surveying the forestry estate and was promoted to Chief of Division Resource Management in the Dept of Forests, Konedobu. When Jim retired from the public service at age 55 in 1972, Pat and Jim took an extended overseas trip. On their return they set up a forestry consultancy for ten successful years. In 1983 they settled on the Gold Coast and continued travelling and enjoying their life together. Jim is survived by his wife, Pat, and daughters Linda and Sally. Linda Manning  

David Stanley COLLINS (10 August 2004, aged 75)

After serving in South Australia Police between 1944-1948 and 1951-1954, he joined the RPNGC in 1957. He served at Boroko, Madang, Wewak and finally at Lae, when he left RPNGC in 1963 to take advantage of the development then occurring on Bougainville. There he was a camp manager for Bechtel WKE for some years. With the phasing out of the construction period he moved to Port Moresby, where he was a manager for Wridgeway Removals. There, he met his second wife Ursula and they married in 1973. In 1974, they moved to Adelaide, and later to Darwin where he was security officer for the Darwin Hospitals Group. Deteriorating health eventually caused him to settle in Nambucca Heads. He is survived by his second wife and five children from his first marriage. Max Hayes  

Reginald Williams COLLINS (13 July 2004, aged 84)

Reg was born in Heidelberg, Victoria. He enlisted in the 2/2 Motor Ambulance Convoy, was captured by the Japanese in World War II and became a prisoner in Thailand. He was one of those working on the Thai Burma railroad construction, but Reg was most reluctant to discuss a recall of those dark times. He was a great mixer and liked to do things his way. He was, after the war ended, reluctant to resume the Victoria rural lifestyle and joined the Public Health Service of the Provisional Administration of New Guinea as a Medical Assistant. He was posted to the Sepik district and served at various stations. Whilst at Wewak Hospital he instituted Aid Post Orderly Training. In his capacity as Field Medical Assistant he met in Wewak a Cadet Patrol Officer Neil Grant and the latter states that ‘He was always very friendly and congenial and a great host’. Reg established the Aid Post Training School for the New Guinea Mainlands Region at Malahang, Lae, and was assisted by a New Guinean, Muttu Gware OBE, who was later honoured by his family and friends with the naming of a wing of the Lae General Hospital as the Gware Memorial Wing. Reg advanced in the development of the Health Department Services at Lae; he later went to Port Moresby to head the Administrative Division of Community Health prior to his retirement. Albert Speer  

Harold CROPP (aged 83)

Harold was born in Boscombe, England. When war came he joined the Royal Engineers and became a model maker of various air force targets for the Fleet Air Arm. Harold emigrated to Australia in 1953 and worked on a property in NSW until Burns Philp offered him a position as Junior Manager on Bougainville. He flew to New Guinea in a Qantas flying boat which was an experience he loved to talk about. Marrying in 1963 Harold and Betty lived on Iwi Plantation for six happy years. Later on they lived on Fanning Island, an atoll in the middle of the Pacific. Harold and Betty settled in New Zealand in 1983. Betty Cropp  

Michael (Mick) Richard GALLEN (17 August 2004, aged 86)

Mick was born at Gympie, Queensland, and joined the Queensland Police in 1940. Whilst stationed at Gordonvale he met and subsequently married his wife Pat and over the years eight children arrived. In 1947 he joined the Royal Papuan Constabulary and New Guinea Police Force as an Assistant Sub Inspector of Police. As a Police Officer he served in Samarai, Lae, Bulolo, Wau, Kokopo and finally in Rabaul from where he resigned in 1965 having attained the rank of Superintendent 1st Class. He was awarded the Police Long Service and Good Conduct Medal in recognition of his long and excellent service to the community. In later years he rejoined the Reserve Constabulary as a police constable, being the only ex 1st Class Superintendent ever to do so. He never worried about rank or status, he just felt that he could best contribute to the community in this way. Mick resigned to become ’Mine Host’ at the Kavieng Hotel in New Ireland. He later added a tavern at Namatanai to his business interests. After retiring and moving back to the Gordonvale area and then to the Atherton Tablelands Mick was actively involved in the community and became well known in the district as being always ready to lend a helping hand. In PNG Mick was liked and respected by all sections of the community. As a police officer he invariably acted in a humane and commonsense manner, setting an excellent example to younger officers. He had a natural talent for all sports and excelled at rugby, tennis, cricket and later golf. His occupation sometimes attracted undue attention on the rugby field from characters who saw the game as an opportunity to sort out a cop, but during his QLD years Mick had learned to accommodate such individuals when the need arose and never worried about it. He became the Club champion at golf in Kavieng and later at Gordonvale, and had a handicap of 19 when he played his last game in early 2004. Mick will be remembered by those who knew him in PNG and in North Queensland with respect and affection as a kind man without prejudice, possessed of a droll sense of humour. Whilst not being overtly religious he believed in and kept his faith throughout. He is survived by his wife Pat and their four sons, four daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Neil Watt and Max Hayes  

The Hon John GREVILLE SMITH, CBE (26 August 2004, aged 84)

John went to PNG in 1955 as the Crown Prosecutor. He became Public Solicitor, and then Chief Crown Prosecutor before departing PNG in 1974. He returned as Judge National and Supreme Courts from 1978-1981. John had very fond memories of the years he spent in PNG and the many friends made there. Joan Smith  

John (Jack) Joseph HART (1924-2004)

Jack was born in Toowoomba, one of seven children, and became a well-known Rugby League identity in both PNG and Toowoomba. Jack joined the Australian Air Force in about 1943 and served in PNG and Irian Jaya (then Dutch New Guinea). He survived two air crashes while on overseas service. Jack went to Port Moresby in 1950 as Foreman refrigeration mechanic with the Commonwealth Department of Works (Comworks). He captained the Paga and Papua Representative Rugby league teams throughout his football career in Moresby. Upon retirement as a player in 1954 Jack was elected a Vice President of the Papua Rugby League and appointed a Papua selector. He continued in these roles until his transfer to Brisbane with Comworks in 1967, returning to Moresby many times to attend Rugby League football finals. In the early 1970s Jack was in a plane crash near Toowoomba, sustaining major burns to his arms and upper body. He and another passenger survived the crash but the pilot died despite Jack’s valiant efforts to rescue him from the burning wreckage. For his courageous action he was awarded Queensland’s highest bravery award. No stranger to aircraft and vehicle accidents, it is said he survived at least 17 without serious injury. In retirement Jack devoted his time to nurturing his many friendships, particularly football colleagues, fund raising for community projects and travel to China. Jack’s funeral in Toowoomba included former members of Paga, Hawks, DCA and Magani football clubs as well as Toowoomba and Australian Rugby League and other sporting identities. Maureen O’Rourke’s simple personal eulogy reflected the thoughts of his many PNG friends. His brothers Nial and Brian survive him. Derek Baldwin  

Terry (Thomas Joseph) KANE (3 June 2004, aged 72)

Brother Terry began life as a Marist brother at 14 years of age. In 1962 he joined the Marist community at St Xavier’s High School on Kairiru Island, PNG. His innovative teaching methods were inspiring to both his students and his peers and he continued to maintain a keen interest in news from PNG after returning to Australia. Info from Herald Sun, 11 October 2004  

Keith MATTINGLEY, AO (28 September 2004, aged 80)

A senior manager with the Herald and Weekly Times and related companies for more than 30 years, Keith held posts in Melbourne, Perth and Port Moresby. He spent two years as personal assistant to Australia’s High Commissioner in London, Sir Thomas White in 1952-53, returning to work in Melbourne with The Herald as chief sub-editor, then feature services manager until 1965. Keith was then given the task of developing the industry in PNG. He was the first editor-in-chief of South Pacific Post newspapers, and later managing director, at all times encouraging the emerging indigenous role in newspapers. Whilst he was Managing Director of West Australian Newspapers for the HWT in the early 80s, he guided the introduction of computer technology. Whilst in Perth he was also Warden of the Anzac Memorial in King’s Park. Keith Mattingley was awarded the Order of Australia in 1984 and became an officer AO in 1991. He used his profile and wide array of contacts to assist community works. He is survived by his wife Janine, two sons, three daughters and 10 grandchildren. Info from Herald Sun 29 Sep 2004  

Robert Leonard PULSFORD (22 July 2004, aged 88)

Bob grew up in Sydney, his father a Congregational minister dying when Bob was 7½. Soon after he spent a year in hospital but recovered and after school years, spent three happy years at Hawkesbury Agricultural College. He later worked as a jackaroo on three properties in NSW. He enlisted in the AIF in 1941 and served for a year in PNG at Port Moresby, Buna, Finschhafen and Madang in a Malaria Control Unit. After demobilization he completed a BA at Sydney University graduating with honours in Anthropology. He began his service in PNG in April 1950 with DASF based first at Boram near Wewak, and then at Urip near Dagua, 30 miles west of Wewak, where he managed the Dagua Rural Progress Society producing rice and peanuts as cash crops. He married Mary Upton in April 1953 and their children were born in the Territory, Ian in Wewak and Susan in Lorengau. In 1955 he was transferred to Manus, as District Agricultural Officer, where copra was the main economic crop, and in 1958 to Taliligap in the Gazelle Peninsula where he was in charge of a training centre with a focus on cocoa production. Following two years in Rabaul as District Agricultural Officer for East New Britain, he changed careers and in 1963 became the first Lecturer in Sociology and Anthropology at the newly formed Papuan Medical College, teaching medical students and nurses, a position he held until his retirement in December 1973 by which time the Medical College had been converted into the Faculty of Medicine of UPNG. During this period he co-authored Health in a Developing Country with Prof John Cawte. After retirement he was awarded an MA degree from Sydney University for his thesis on Changing Attitudes to Illness and Misfortune amongst the Motu – Koita, the result of ten years study in Pari village near Port Moresby.

His retirement interests were varied including seven years in the photography department of the Australian Museum as a volunteer, years as a volunteer in bush regeneration near his home in Northbridge, bee-keeping, bush walking, member of a book discussion group and Probus Club. All his life he was a man of faith, a skilled ‘Mr Fixit’ and his story-telling gifts enlivened many gatherings. Bob is survived by his wife Mary, his children Ian and Susan and four grandchildren. Mary Pulsford  

Robert George STEWART (5 June 2004, aged 81)

Bob was born in Sydney and served 4½ years in the 2/6 Australian Armoured Regiment (with seven months in PNG) during WWII. He returned to PNG in the late 1950s with his wife Joy and children Jennifer and Lilla. His first posting was at the Medical Store in Rabaul as a pharmacist where he took great pride in the efficient distribution of supplies to hospitals and aid posts in the area. He was secretary of the Kokopo Rifle Club during this period. Bob was transferred to Mt Hagen to set up a Medical Supply depot for the Highlands region in 1964. In 1966 he transferred to Pt Moresby with the Health Dept until 1975. He was recognised as a true pioneer in his field. Bob was a champion rifle shooter having been awarded the Champion of Champions at Anzac Range, Sydney, in July 1958. While he was stationed in Mt Hagen, the British Empire and Commonwealth Games were held in Kingston, Jamaica. The PNG Games Committee established a six-person team with Bob as secretary. He won a silver medal in the Rifle Shooting. This was one of the highlights of his life and kept him involved with sporting organizations in PNG until the 10th British Commonwealth Games in 1974 where he proudly once again was a member of the PNG team in Christchurch, NZ. Bob and Joy ‘went south’ in 1975 although it was hard leaving the jobs they loved and the life-long friends they had made. They purchased a pharmacy in Sydney before retiring to Brisbane. Bob suffered a stroke in 1998 but at all times maintained his dignity and devotion to his family and friends. This was compiled by the Stewart Family and given to Bert Speer in Sydney at a luncheon with Joy and daughter Lilla and school friend of Bob’s, Mr Don Dunn. Albert Speer

 

Paul TOHIAN, QPM (13 May 2004, aged 54)

The son of Henry Tohian who joined the NG Police Force in 1940, Paul himself joined the RPNGC in 1968 as a Cadet Officer, proceeding through Commissioned Officer ranks until he was promoted Assistant Commissioner of Police in 1987 responsible for operations in Bougainville before being promoted to Commissioner of Police in 1988. During the following two years he was controller of the state of emergency on Bougainville, which was in conflict with the central government. He supported a military solution to this ‘war’ which was estimated to have cost around 10,000 lives, including many from police and army. Unhappy with the political situation when the central govt signed an agreement with the Bougainville Revolutionary Army in 1990 which required police and army to leave the island, Tohian ordered the Constabulary to assemble outside Parliament House where he ordered the arrest of Prime Minister Rabbie Namaliu and opposition leader Paias Wingti. Tohian was later arrested and charged with treason, ending his police career, but these charges were later dropped. He then entered politics becoming the first Governor of New Ireland Province in 1997 until his defeat in 2002, when he remained in business in Kavieng. Given a full police funeral attended by 5,000, he leaves a wife, Saraim and several children. Max Hayes

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