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Australian veterans travelling to PNG to mark the 70th anniversary of Victory in the Pacific



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Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) and Veterans Line can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free and confidential counselling. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546)

Wednesday, 2 September 2015 VA090

AUSTRALIAN VETERANS TRAVELLING TO PNG TO MARK THE 70TH ANNIVERSARY OF VICTORY IN THE PACIFIC

Seven Second World War veterans who served in, or directly supported, the New Guinea campaigns from the Battle for Wau in January 1943 onwards, will travel to Papua New Guinea (PNG) to mark the 70th anniversary of Victory in the Pacific, the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson announced today.

“The veterans, who are in their late 80s and early 90s and come from across Australia, will represent all those who served during the Second World War, and particularly those who were involved throughout the Pacific.

“The journey back to where they once served will be an unforgettable experience, with commemorative services to be held at memorials throughout PNG. A special service will take place on Sunday, 13 September at Cape Wom, the site of surrender in the region, 70 years ago to the day,” Senator Ronaldson said.

Victory in Europe was declared in May 1945, but fighting continued in the Pacific until later that year. Australians were heavily involved in campaigns throughout New Guinea until the Japanese Government accepted the Allied terms of surrender in August 1945.

“I wish this courageous group of veterans well on their travels and I look forward to joining them for part of their time in PNG.

“While they will represent our nation, and those who served during the Second World War, I encourage Australians to acknowledge the efforts of all our servicemen and women who have represented our country in wars, conflicts, peace and humanitarian operations over the past century of service,” Senator Ronaldson said.

MINISTER FOR VETERANS’ AFFAIRS

SENATOR THE HON. MICHAEL RONALDSON MINISTER FOR VETERANS’ AFFAIRS MINISTER ASSISTING THE PRIME MINISTER FOR THE CENTENARY OF ANZAC

SPECIAL MINISTER OF STATE

Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) and Veterans Line can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free and confidential counselling. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546)

Editor’s note: Follow the veterans on Facebook at Anzac Centenary, Twitter at @dvaaus and Flickr at DVA Aus. Veteran biographies, images, historical background and other resources are available at www.dva.gov.au/media. For interviews with veteran representatives contact dale.starr@dva.gov.au or +61 428 805 578

Media inquiries: Minister Ronaldson: Mark Lee 02 6277 7820 or 0408 547 381 Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

Veteran representatives travelling to PNG

Name Location Age on mission Unit/Service

Mr Gordon Graham NSW 88 Navy - HMAS Westralia

Mr Ronald George Lee VIC 90 Navy - HMAS Manoora and HMAS

Moreton

Mr David Andary OBE SA 90 Air Force - No. 3 Airfield

Construction Squadron

Mr Leigh Oxley Hindley DFC ACT 92 Air Force - No. 80 Squadron

Mr Norman Quayle VIC 92 Army - 9th Division Signals

Mr Ernest J Jeston NSW 91 Army - 2/7th Battalion

Mr Leonard Seto QLD 92 Army - 17th, 5th, and 2/11th Field

Regiments, 11th Division Signals HQ