5RAR Historical Archive

5RAR Car Stickers - a reason to have one.

Our Association has always advocated the display of car stickers on veterans’ vehicles, and here is a reason to do so.

Following the devastating bushfires in the Coonabarabran (NSW) district in early 2013, a voluntary group known as “Blaze Aid” moved into town to assist in the clearing of destroyed home sites, and to rebuild perimeter fencing of rural properties.

Don Harrod and Don Oakley

On Saturday 6th April 2013, Roslyn Harrod (wife of Don, C Company 2nd tour) was in town, and somebody noticed the 5RAR car sticker on her vehicle. Enquires were made, with no result, so a note was left on her car. When she arrived home, Don saw the note, which had been written by a Blaze Aid volunteer. Some simple detective work found the author to be Don Oakley, who had served with Tracker Platoon on the second tour.

The two Dons got together with light refreshments, and memories from 44 years ago were re-visited. Many names were mentioned, many old incidents were discussed, and the friendship consolidated. Then came one of life’s great coincidences – they discovered that when Don Harrod’s brother Ian, was the harbour

master of the Esperance Port (WA) in recent years, Don Oakley’s son Geordie was his assistant! This was another reason to have more light refreshments. As a result of their newly forged friendship and re-acquaintance, more “meetings” will be held while Don Oakley is in Coonabarabran – one of these of course will be the ANZAC Day commemoration on April 25th.

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