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John Denman

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  1. Jack turns 98 on 9 August 2019. I will, on behalf of the association, send him a birthday card but would encourage all members to also send one. Unfortunatley, due to mobility issues he will shortly be moving to a care system. In the meantime cards can be sent to: 255 O'Regan Creek Road Toogoom Queensland 4655
  2. The MC for the Dawn Service was Lieutenant-Colonel Martin Dransfield, from the New Zealand Defence Force. Martin is currently the Strategic Advisor to Chief of Staff of the Falintil–Forcas de Defesa de Timor-Leste (F-FDTL) or Timor-Leste Defense Force. The Service was well attended by Timorese Veterans and civilians; NZ, US and Australian Defence personnel currently serving in Timor-Leste, and the 1942 Tour Group, including the Hayes family. Excellent service, well led by Martin and during the service Martin mentioned the 2/2 and the tour group on a couple of occasions. On completion of the service, the Timorese Veterans requested they meet and shake the hands of all tour group members, and traditional Timorese tais were presented to all members of the touring group by the Timorese General. A most enjoyable and enriching service with lots of photos being taken, both by tour group members and the Timorese Veterans.
  3. Inauguration Ceremony The Keith Hayes Building St Anthony’s International School Rua St António Motael, Palappasu, Timor-Leste 24 April 2019 The tour group, Leonie Robson, Hylton Hayes and Trevor Hayes attended the school for the formal inauguration of 'The Keith Hayes Building’. The ceremony was opened by Cesar Dias Quintas, General Manager of the school, and speeches followed by Dr Jose Ramos-Horta (former President of Timor-Leste, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and school Patron), His Excellency Mr Peter Roberts OAM (Australian Ambassador to Timor Leste), John Denman and Ed Willis (on behalf of the association), Mrs Gail Barker (Executive Director, Association of Independent Schools of NT) and Leonie Robson on behalf of the Hayes family. The years 5 – 7 students performed a dance which was loudly acclaimed by the audience. A year-3 Timorese student, Eria Maeva Menezes Mesquita, stole the show with her expression of gratitude for the funds donated for the classroom. There was a formal blessing of the school and the plaque was officially uncovered. This was followed by a classroom tour and afternoon tea. Posters from the ‘Debt of Honour’ exhibition regarding the ration truck massacre and Keith’s survival story, and the old association’s long history of support for the people of Timor-Leste were displayed outside the new classrooms along with information about the new association’s continuing supportive efforts. These may be placed on permanent display in that location and encourage future visitors to the school who have a WWII history interest.
  4. Well done Ed, you may wish to add this extract from page 746 of the Official History of the Second World War – the Guinea Offensive (By |David Dexter) Extract VI Of the Official History of the Second World War - the New Guinea Offensive.pdf
  5. Letter to Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd).pdf
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