Text Box:                     3rd. AUSTRALIAN DIVISION 
                                            PAGE 4 of 12

From the PresidentThis is our fifth newsletter, circulated to all Members and Associate Members of our Association and I hope you all enjoy reading it. Your feedback would be greatly appreciated and would help us prepare future newsletters. This year our committee has seen more changes. Dave Tomlin has decided to step down from the position of Vice President due to ill health. I’m glad to say he is remaining on the committee though, as his presence has been extremely valuable over the years. It will be our great pleasure to award him for his services with a Life Membership Certificate at our next Annual General Meeting on Anzac Day 2009. Colin Wood has stepped into Dave’s shoes as our new VP. I know Colin will do a superb job too and welcome him with great enthusiasm. At present, we have just 67 current members from the original list of 800. Of the 67 remaining members, just 38 are financial and 21 were able to attend the last Anzac Day luncheon. On the other hand, we enjoyed the presence of 64 Associate Members and Guests at the last luncheon. We are indeed indebted to Associate Members for their massive support in keeping our Anzac Day Reunion viable. Just a reminder about Anzac Day attire for the March and thank you for all who attended the 2008 March and dressed well —so pleasing to see our crew complied with the RSL’s request to be well dressed! Again, my Compliments of the Season to all. Kevin.




Frank McKellar and Bob England had a large representation of family for the presentation of their Life Memberships—and they hogged the raffle prizes too!



Bluey Doyle made it to Melbourne for the Reunion but didn’t make the reunion, instead spending the time in hospital. Reports from Queensland indicate he is well now.



Due to strong demand, Lapel Colour Patches are currently on order and will be available on Anzac Day or before—contact Colin.



We have included for interest a copy of a part of the front page of The Sun dated September 11, 1942.  It speaks for itself.

The major Raffle Prize this coming Anzac Day will again be a holiday—guaranteed to be a fantastic prize!  Full details will be in your next annual circular.



Allan Closter has improved out of all sight from the nasty stroke he suffered and is now quite mobile although unlikely to regain his speech.




Fallen comrades since the 2008 Anzac Day

Lest we Forget




Arthur (Lanky) Lancaster (24/05/2008)


Frank Burridge (19/10/2008)


Bill Gardiner (29/05/2008)


Bruce Picken (29/06/2008)


Laurie Williams (05/06/2008)


Charlie Thompson (24/04/2008)




If any of you have information concerning fallen comrades we would be most grateful to be advised.


We shall also make a report in the next Annual Circular.

To Members, Associate Members and Families




Last Anzac Day it was great to see such a large number of Members’ immediate and extended families, Associate Members and their families not only supporting our Foundation Members on this important day by participating in the March, but also attending and enjoying the Reunion Luncheon that followed at the Celtic Club.


This year the committee would like to encourage all members, especially those who have not had, or lost contact with the Association over the years to make every effort to attend the 2009 reunion, primarily to “catch up with old mates”. We realise as time marches on, attendance becomes more difficult through any number of circumstances, but it also makes the occasion even more important. We would like it make it known that if immediate or extended families of the Members who are able assist in making Members attendance possible, they also would be warmly welcome to join us for the March and/or the Reunion Luncheon to say thanks to the blokes who gave us the opportunity to live as we do today.


If any information or assistance is required the Committee can be contacted on the numbers listed below:-



Colin Wood – 0409 410 268 or (03) 9773 5856



Jan Wadge – 0409 743 323 or (03) 9889 0631



Bruce Deane-Freeman - 0401 598545



Malcolm Bolding -  (03) 9726 5323




Associate Membership


The numbers are growing but we still need more to ensure the future of the Association. Associate Membership is only $5.00 per annum. “Be a part of it”.




Colour Patches


The very popular small oval lapel clutch pin of the Association Colours, have been re-ordered and indications are that they should be available for purchase prior to Christmas.

The cost is $5.00 each plus postage. We suggest that you order if you are interested. Contact Colin Wood – (03) 9773 5856. They make a great gift for the Christmas Stocking!!


Cheers and warm wishes for a healthy and safe Christmas and New Year to all.

Colin Wood (Son of Clarrie)

Vice President

ABOVE: Is anyone able to fill in the gaps? This photo is held by Nipper Taylor. The identity of some above are unknown and more information would be really helpful.

Top row L to R: 1) Unknown,

 2) Nobby Boyle ?, 3) Wally Thompson, 4) Unknown.

Front row L to R: 1) Joe Deane-Freeman, 2) Wally Thompson, 3) Unknown, 4) Horrie Crittenden.

ABOVE: Bob England (left) proudly wore his army uniform to receive his Life Membership Certificate. Frank McKellar (right) receiving his certificate.

What a fine row of young men!


L to R,



Ray Ackton ?,


Jim (Chalky) Geran,


Kevin (Mick) Egan,


Ken (Tex) Mitchell,


Keith (Lockie) Nielson.

Text Box:                                                   NEWSLETTER   3RD. DIVISION AASC ASSOCIATION   ISSUE 5   2008

From the President:   We proudly present our fourth newsletter which is circulated to all financial members and associate members of our association.  Firstly, I wish to express our utmost thanks to two wonderful committee members who are stepping aside this year.  Bob England and Frank McKellar have served on our committee since 1995 and worked tirelessly for our Association over all these years.  Our indebtedness to them is enormous and I thank them from the bottom of my heart for their truly wonderful efforts.  It will be my great honour to present both Bob and Frank with well deserved Life Membership Certificates at our next Annual General Meeting on Anzac Day 2008.  Bruce Deane-Freeman and Malcolm Bolding have kindly offered to lend their energies to our committee and we look forward to their contributions in the future.  This year we have lost a number of our members and for many more their increasing age is taking its toll.  We had 22 members present at the luncheon last Anzac Day and 44 associate members.  Without our associate members it would be difficult to maintain the standards we enjoy at our reunions!  We are most grateful and fortunate to have such loving and supportive families!   Our newsletter is a bit later than usual this year so we thought we would put a bit of Christmas spirit into it.  Hope you enjoy it and I wish you all Seasons Greetings and look forward to our 2008 reunion!


Text Box:                                                 NEWSLETTER   3RD. DIVISION AASC ASSOCIATION   ISSUE 4  2007

Committee Meeting held on Sunday 28th October 2007.  From left to right: back row: Dave Tomlin, Jan Wadge, Malcolm Bolding.  Next row: Curly Middenway, Nipper Taylor, George Whitfield, Colin Wood and Bruce Deane-Freeman.  Linda Poole is behind the camera. 




Last Anzac Day Ray (Curly) Middenway had a nasty fall from a tram on his way to the March.  He nevertheless, attended the March and Reunion Luncheon.  Only then did he go to a hospital to discover he had chipped a bone in his knee.  He was hospitalised for quite some time whilst his knee was repaired and he healed.  Such determination Curly!



Bob England has been in hospital but is now home and on the mend.  Bob has been looking after our Honour Roll of Fallen Comrades for a number of years but has decided recently to take things a bit easier.  Our sincere thanks to Bob for his wonderful work. 



Colin Wood (son of the late Clarrie Wood) has kindly volunteered for the job.  Much appreciated Colin!


If anyone is visiting the Benalla area, you could catch a

glimpse of Len Lewis and his wife taking their early morning walk.  However, you would have to be a really early bird.  They start around 5.00 to 5.30 each morning.



Frank McKellar and his wife have both reached a milestone in their lives—90 years young!





And some news from our Queensland members




Arthur (Lanky) Lancaster is not the best and now in a nursing home suffering with severe dementia.  He will be 91 on January 1st 2008.



Arthur (Bluey) Doyle  is also not travelling well and is unlikely to be able to attend our Anzac Days in Melbourne again.

George (Churchy) Churchward is undertaking another tour.  Four members of his RSL are doing a tour of prisoner of war camps—Changhi, Bangkok and Manila included

Anzac Day attire for March Participants:

The RSL’s dress code for those participating in the March is SMART CASUAL.  Please, no footy jumpers, track suits or runners.  Whilst most of our boys dress in a suit and tie which we support 100%, smart casual is acceptable. 


Last Anzac Day it became alarmingly obvious that old father time was taking its toll very quickly on the Foundation Members of the 3rd Division AASC.





This raises two very important questions.

How do we see the commemoration of Anzac Day in the immediate and distant future and equally important, how do we ensure the recognition of the 3rd Division AASC, and the continuation of our Anzac Day Reunion.


The simple answer is in the involvement of, and growth of our Associate Members.


It should be stressed that our meeting together on Anzac Day, the March and the Reunion Luncheon afterwards, is not a glorification of the war, but a celebration and a chance to say thanks to the blokes who gave us the opportunity to live as we do today.


In the twenty odd years that I have been involved with the 3rd Div., I have never, other than the humorous stories, heard the war discussed.  It has more been the chance to renew old mate ships and enjoy each others’ company.


I therefore urge our members and their families, particularly those of departed members not to loose contact with the association but in fact become more a part of it, to ensure a strong and long future.


In closing, I would like to encourage you to march with us on Anzac Day, because until you do you will never feel the pride that I do in marching with my youngest son, my youngest daughter and my niece as you approach the shrine, also in putting the arm around the shoulder of a great mate who I met at a reunion some twenty years ago, Bruce Deane-Freeman, as we shed a tear at the shrine and a beer later in memory of our late dads.

Come on, be part of it! Colin Wood. “Son of Clarrie”





Fallen comrades since the 2007 Anzac Day Reunion are as follows:

John Surrey (06/06/2007),

Mick Shallue (27/07/2007),

Geoff Westcott (16/07/2007),

Basil Holman (20/11/2007)

Lest we Forget



If any of you have information concerning fallen comrades we would be most grateful to be advised.


We shall also make a report in the next Annual Circular.

Text Box:                                                   NEWSLETTER   3RD. DIVISION AASC ASSOCIATION   ISSUE 3   2006

From the President:   It is a pleasure to present our third newsletter which is circulated to all financial members and associate members of our association.  Last year we asked for feedback to give us some means of measuring the success (or otherwise) of this newsletter and the reception was a bit mixed, especially at the AGM last Anzac Day.  However, we have since received some really positive comments and the committee have decided to continue at least for the time being.  We hope you enjoy this third edition.  Many thanks to Lockie Nielson for sending some very interesting material, some of which we have included here, and to others who have also contributed.  Our committee remains strong and determined to present an enjoyable Anzac Day Reunion each year and to our delight, we have been able to add another Associate Member to our group this year; Linda Poole.  As our numbers dwindle, our associate members are providing great support.  Our original list of members exceeded 800 and today we have just 102 remaining.  59 members are financial.  Our 2006 list of Associate Members stands at 58.  Kindest regards once again to all, Kevin

Committee Meetings



The Committee meets three times a year at the home of Jan Wadge to plan each Anzac Day Reunion, followed by a luncheon supplied by Jan.  Meetings are held each May post Anzac Day to wrap up, and in October and February each year to plan for the next reunion. 



Anzac Day 2006 was a good day.  There were 28 members and 58 associate members present.



The luncheon was heavily subsidised with existing funds, with attendees paying just $10.00 for a three course meal.



However, an astounding $956.00 was collected in raffle tickets and our reserve funds remain extremely healthy. 

We are almost embarrassed to report that Jan Wadge won the first prize, a night for two at the Shamrock Hotel in Bendigo!  However, there were numerous other great prizes to be won.             

Committee Meeting held on Sunday 15th October 2006.  From left to right, Colin Wood, Nipper Taylor, Curly Middenway, Dave Tomlin, George Whitfield, Bob England and Frank McKellar.  Jan Wadge is behind the camera and Linda Poole was on holidays.




Both Arthur (Bluey) Doyle and Arthur (Lanky) Lancaster from Queensland have recently been in hospital.  Allan Closter is sadly in a nursing home after suffering a stroke last year.  Allan is able to walk but his speech and ability to communicate have been very badly affected.  Merv Newman is in the Bendigo Retirement Village.  Merv’s eyesight is not good, so much so he is unable to use a phone.  Otherwise he is doing well.


Anzac Day 2007


Nipper Taylor and George Whitfield attended a meeting at Anzac House (Melbourne) on 9th October, representing 3 Div AASC Association .  On the agenda for this meeting were items concerning descendants of veterans, formation of units and marching 8 abreast.


The decisions at the end of the meeting were that members march 8 abreast, that descendants keep up with the pace of the march and there are to be no gaps between units, it being the responsibility of each unit to ensure a short distance only remains between them.  There was a move to have grandchildren march at the back of the unit but this was not carried.


Where were you on VP Day?  In our last Issue, we asked members to tell us where they were on VP Day, 15th August 1945.  Here are the responses



Our President told of how he and a few mates went swimming in the raw at a beach on Bougainville.  A jeep arrived with two nurses and General Thomas Blamey aboard.  Nipper and his mates had to stand to attention …



Bob England was in Madang.  Upon receipt of the news, he and his battalion, including their Padre became very, very inebriated!



Frank McKellar was in Bougainville.  Frank was sent to Lae where he received orders to wind up his unit.  He was given the choice of doing so from Sydney.  This suited Frank down to the ground.  Guess where his girlfriend (now his wife, Beth) resided?  Frank admitted it took him three weeks to do a ten day job!



Dave Tomlin was in Bougainville.  Two days later he went to Angau (Australian and New Guinea Admin. Unit) situated in Rabaul.



Curly Middenway and George Whitfield were at Wide Bay, Rabaul. They remember a Padre spoke to the troops there to convey the news of the end of the war.



Lockie Nielson had just arrived in Brisbane from Bougainville when peace was declared.  Lockie says he kissed a few girls and headed straight home to Canterbury (Melbourne) where his wife was staying.




Sadly, we have a number of fallen comrades since the 2006 Anzac Day Reunion:


Ross McIlroy (May 06),

Max Davidson (24/05/2006),

Wally Thomson (27/05/2006),

Les Grant (25/06/2006 and

Rod Dewar (03/09/2006)


Lest we Forget



If any of you have information concerning fallen comrades we would be most grateful to be advised.


We shall also make a report in the next Annual Circular.

Below: left to right, back row; Alan Downing, Jim Taylor, unknown, Allan Closter.  Front: Len Stephens, Frank Burridge and Tom Moulden, taken during our 50th Anniversary held at the Danish Club, Anzac Day, 25th April 1996.

Above: The unveiling of our Plaque at Seymour 23/03/2003 where 3 Div did early training.

Front, Nipper Taylor and Allan Closter.



Right: Our Unit Plaque at Rocky Creek War Memorial Park, Atherton Tablelands Northern Queensland.

Above: Lockie Nielsen provided this shot, taken in Port Moresby 1942/43.  Standing far right is Len Stephens.  Kneeling far left is Lockie.  Kneeling third from the left is Gordon Petersen and Lockie has identified Bill Cowie kneeling in the foreground.  Can anyone identify any of the other troops in this shot?       

Text Box:                                                   NEWSLETTER   3RD. DIVISION AASC ASSOCIATION   ISSUE 2   2005

Note: The Obituary of George Philip Ruttle appeared in the Melbourne Herald Sun, Wednesday, March 1, 2006.

From the President:   It is with great delight that we bring you our second annual newsletter, which is circulated to all financial members and associate members.  Next Anzac Day (25th April 2006) we will be celebrating our 60th Anniversary!  Our committee is planning an extra special luncheon after the March, to be held at the Celtic Club (320 Queen Street, Melbourne, Cnr Lonsdale Street).  I well know we are all getting older but hope you are able to make it on the day.  If transport is a problem, please let us know and we will endeavour to arrange for you to be collected.  There will be a special raffle on the day!  We have a weekend for two at the Shamrock Hotel in Bendigo which promises to be fantastic.  Last Anzac Day we offered a weekend for two at the Lakeside Resort Nagambie, which was won by Frank McKellar’s grandson Mark, who kindly gave his prize to Frank and his wife Beth.  More about their weekend away is reported below.  

Please give us some feedback on our newsletter, and if you have something to contribute for next year’s edition, we would be delighted.  Kindest regards to all  Kevin


Raffle Prize—2 nights accommodation and meals for 2 at Lakeside Resort Nagambie.



Frank McKellar and his wife Beth were the lucky recipients of the first prize in the raffle last Anzac Day.  Actually it was won by their grandson Mark who very kindly passed his tickets on to his grandparents.

Frank and Beth departed from their home in Heathmont at 10.30am and set out for Nagambie via Yarraglen.  On the way they passed some of the places Frank and his Militia mates visited during their training days at Seymour in 1940 to 1942.  One place in particular was Tarwool, which had ans still has a very nice pub.  They stopped at Seymour for lunch and arrived at Nagambie around 2.00pm, having taken a leisurely drive.

There was no trouble finding the Lakeside Resort, it being a fairly imposing building at the top end of the lake.  They received a lovely welcome and then shown to their room where they were to stay for 2 nights.

The room was large with all mod cons including a well stocked refrigerator and a spa in the bathroom.  From the window there was a lovely view of the lake.  At the back of the room were two very large glass doors opening on to a verandah from where they enjoyed breakfast whilst watching the birds diving for a fish breakfast of their own.

Having looked over the township of Nagambie on the first day, they travelled the 60 or so kilometres to Shepparton.  They were astonished how Shepparton has grown over the years since being there last.  They spent the evenings enjoying 3 course dinners served with wine, setting out for home on the third day.

Frank and Beth enjoyed their two day retreat enormously and want to thank Colin Wood for obtaining such a wonderful prize.  The next prize for 2006 is for 2 nights at the famous Shamrock Hotel in Bendigo.  Don’t miss out on your tickets!


Sadly, we advise that Allan Closter suffered a massive stroke early in September.  Colin Wood, who is regularly visiting Allan in hospital has reported that he has improved enormously since the early days, is now able to swallow and is regaining mobility.  We are all thinking of Allan and wish him a sound recovery.



We have been advised that George Ruttle is not at all well and has been back in hospital.  Bob England has not been well , suffering from vertigo.


Frank McKellar has been struggling with breathing problems.


On Wednesday 7th September, a commemorative ceremony was held at the Shrine of Remembrance to remember the sacrifices and service of Australians and our Allies who repulsed the Japanese attack on Australia in 1942—1943.  Ten of our member attended (the weather was not the best).  There was a very short march and we had our banner flying!







As this newsletter goes to print, we are happy to say we only have 2 comrades listed as fallen.

Roy Warn (25 April 2005

Jack Ryan (5 May 2005)



Lest we Forget



If any of you have information concerning fallen comrades we would be most grateful to be advised.


We shall also make a report in the next Annual Circular.

There was plenty to celebrate!  1945 and the end of the war, first in Europe (8 May) and then in the Pacific (15 August).  60 years ago this year.  Where were you then?  A note telling us your story may provide a great article in next year’s newsletter.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) have produced a very useful booklet (pictured above), HEALTH SERVICES, BENEFITS AND CONCESSIONS.  The book is a guide to the health and aged care services and benefits, discounts and concessions available through the DVA and a wide range of Commonwealth, State and Local Government Departments and businesses.

Eligibility for these services and concessions is generally linked to DVA and CentreLink card systems and is a must read for us all.

It is available at all DVA centres and is free of charge.