Poetry - Tiger Battalion

Sergeant R. L. Orchard


An Australian warrior has just passed away.
He was respected by all in so many ways
Good soldier, good leader, good mate and good man.
Ray fought for his country in South Vietnam.

And like so many others though damaged by war.
He never spoke of the trauma endured.
But he raised a family with Yvonne his wife.
Two children were born—they were the love of his life.

And to his grandchildren I'd just like to say,
All the things I remember, and loved about Ray.
He could run like the wind, and box with the best.
In all types of sport he could outshine the rest.

He was fearless in battle, a born leader of men.
Displaying sheer courage, again and again.
Words can't describe the degree of his worth.
He was one of a kind, the salt of the earth.

When money was tight and he was down to one smoke.
He'd quite gladly share it – he was that kind of bloke.
With his friends he was honest, loyal and kind.
The best sort of mate a young soldier could find.

He was always respected, and loved by his peers.
In life he stood up for everything we hold dear.
In death we salute him, as one of the brave.
Treasured memories of Raymond we will take to the grave.


© Bill Charlton

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