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Edward Willis

2/2 Commando Association Safaris

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Safaris were recurring events conducted by the old 2/2 Commando Association. Over the lifetime of the Association 19 enjoyable and well-attended Safaris were completed between 1956 and 2003 at various locations around Australia.  Jack Carey provided the following brief history of the Safaris just before the last one got underway:

The Last Hurrah!

Our 19th and last Safari is now less than 8 weeks away and although we acknowledge that all good things must come to an end, the final night on the 18th November will surely be a nostalgic occasion.  More than a few tears will be shed especially by those who have enjoyed participating in our Safaris.

Bert Tobin is accredited with coming up with the idea that members from all states should get together every now and then to renew wartime friendships.  As a result of Bert's proposal, the first reunion or Safari as Doigy preferred to call them, was held in Melbourne in 1956 when the Olympic Games were on.  The second Safari was held in Perth to coincide with the Commonwealth Games. Both were successful, and the Safaris really took off.  Sydney was the 1968 venue, then followed Perth in 1971, Tassie/Melbourne 1973, Sydney 1976, Adelaide 1978, the Gold Coast, Qld 1981, Perth 1983, Canberra 1986, Phillip Island 1988, The Barossa Valley 1990, Port Macquarie 1992, Busselton 1994, Maroochydore, 1996, Canberra 1998, Hobart 2000, Mildura 2002 and yet to come Perth 2003.

Each had its highlights.  The 44 Sandgropers had a memorable Safari in 1968.  Led by Colin Doig and travelling by train spending time at Kalgoorlie, Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra including a trip over the Snowies, finally arriving at Sydney.  We were treated like lords at all stops; the hospitality was overwhelming.  It culminated with our grandest Anzac Day march ever.  Led by 'the Bull' with Sandy Eggleton and Tony Bowers proudly carrying our Double Diamond banner followed by 112 members on their very best behaviour, we did the old Unit and Association proud.  We remember with gratitude all those members, families and friends, many who are no longer with us, who worked so hard to ensure the 18 Safaris were such great and happy events.  Your WA committee will do all it can to ensure our last Safari will also be one to remember.  See you in Perth on the 12th November.

God bless. .. J. Carey.

A listing of all the Safaris including references to the Courier issues where they were reported follows.  The list also indicates whether a photo album or other material related to a particular Safari is held in the Association archives.  Also attached is a copy of the chapter from Col Doig’s history of the Association to 1992 covering the Safaris.

YEAR

LOCATION

COURIER REPORT

PHOTO ALBUM

OTHER MATERIAL *

1956

21 November – December 2

Melbourne

Courier March 1957: 7-10

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1957-03%20-%20Courier%20March%201957.pdf

Olympic Games Safari

 

 

1962

22 November – December 2

Perth

Courier January 1963: 1-5

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1963/Courier%20January%201963.pdf

Commonwealth Games Safari

 

Yes

1968

April 6 - 22

Perth-Adelaide-Melbourne-Canberra- Sydney

Courier June 1968: 5-14

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1968-06%20-%20Courier%20June%201968.pdf

The Great Safari

 

Yes

1971

September 2 - 11

Perth

Courier September 1971: 2-8

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1971/Courier%20September%201971.pdf

Jubilee Safari

 

Yes

1974

22 February – 16 March

Melbourne-Tasmania

Courier May 1974: 10-14

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1974/Courier%20May%201974.pdf

Tasmanian Safari

 

 

1976

30 August – 11 September

Sydney

Courier December 1976: 2-4

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1976/Courier%20December%201976.pdf

Yes

Yes

1978

7 – 16 October

Adelaide

Courier December 1978: 11-13

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1978/Courier%20December%201978.pdf

South Australian Safari

Yes

Yes

1981

5 – 18 October

Gold Coast-Brisbane

Courier December 1981: 2-5

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1981/Courier%20December%201981.pdf

Gold Coast Safari

Yes

Yes

1983

3 – 16 October

Perth

Courier December 1983: 2-8

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1983/Courier%20December%201983.pdf

Sandgroper Safari

 

Yes

1986

8 – 16 March

Canberra

Courier June 1986: 1-8

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1986/Courier%20June%201986.pdf

Canberra Safari

 

Yes

1988

18 – 27 March

Cowes - Phillip Island

Courier June 1988: 2-4

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1988/Courier June 1988.pdf

 

 

1990

16 – 25 March

Adelaide-Barossa Valley

Courier June 1990: 2-4

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1990/Courier%20June%201990.pdf

Barossa Valley Safari

Yes

Yes

1992

13 – 23 March

Port Macquarie

Courier April 1992: 4-7

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1992/Courier%20April%201992.pdf

Port Macquarie Safari

Yes

Yes

1994

7 – 14 April

Busselton

Courier June 1994: 3-8

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1994/Courier%20June%201994.pdf

Busselton Safari

Yes

 

1996

20 – 30 April

Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast

Courier August 1996: 12-13

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1996/Courier%20August%201996.pdf

Maroochydore Safari

Yes

Yes

1998

10 – 18 March

Canberra

Courier June 1998: 2-4

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/1998/Courier%20June%201998.pdf

Canberra Safari

Yes

Yes

2000

8 – 15 March

Hobart

Courier June 2000: 6-11

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/2000/Courier%20June%202000.pdf

Hobart Safari

Yes

Yes

2002

1 – 8 May

Mildura

Courier June 2002: 14-17

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/2002/Courier%20June%202002.pdf

Mildura Safari

Yes

Yes

2003

12 – 18 November

Perth

Courier March 2004: 9-10

https://doublereds.org.au/couriers/2004/Courier%20March%202004.pdf

Perth Safari – The ‘Last Hurrah!'

 

 

* Note: other material includes itineraries, dinner menus and commemorative service programmes, etc.

REFERENCES

C.D. Doig. – A great fraternity: the story of the 2/2 Commando Association 1946-1992. – Perth: C.D. Doig, 1993: Chapter 15 – Interstate Safaris (pp.96-111).

J. Carey ‘The last hurrah!’ CourierSeptember 2003: 1.

img20180927_20084290.jpg

img20180927_20110553.jpg

SA Safari 1978.jpg

Gold Coast Safari 1981.jpg

Sandgroper Safari 1971jpg.jpg

Canberra Safari 1986.jpg

Adelaide-Barossa Valley Safari 1990.jpg

 

Port Macquarie Safari 1992.jpg

Busselton Safari 1994.jpg

Maroochydore Safari 1996.jpg

Canberra Safari 1998.jpg

Hobart Safari 2000.jpg

Mildura Safari 2002.jpg

INTERSTATE_SAFARIS_-Great_fraternity_complete_copy.pdf

Edited by Edward Willis
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