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Honouring the service of our Veterans

Banner Veteran Ralph.jpg

Anzac Day is widely known as a national day of remembrance for those who have served our country. At Bolton Clarke, we have a rich history steeped in honouring the service of our Veterans. We have the privilege to know many who now call one of our community’s home.

Many of these residents are also a part of the esteemed Centenarian Club, so we asked them to share their secrets for living a long life!

ANZAC2022-Bill-service-web.jpgGalleon Gardens resident Bill celebrated his 101st birthday on 19 April. A former Leading Aircraftman, Bill grew up in the small Victorian farming community of Toora and enlisted in the RAAF at 20, working alongside the American Air Force in the Pacific during World War II.

Serving in Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and Borneo, he helped build airstrips as part of the No. 3 Airfield Construction Squadron, discharging in January 1946.

On the secret to living a long life? Well, Bill says it’s simple:

“I never smoked; I wasn’t a party boy. I always ate healthily and avoided drinking.”

ANZAC2022-Alec-Gagino-web.jpgAlec, a resident at Inverpine’s residential aged care community enlisted when he was only 17 years old, making him one of our youngest serving members. Born on Valentine’s Day, and an only child the now 97 year old was in the Navy for 3 years and 4 months.

He was working in an office in Melbourne when he saw the recruitment office down the street. Deciding to enlist, Alec was told he would be called when they were ready for him. Six months later he was sent up and down the coast of Australia to Japan. After that, he says it was back to civilian life!

ANZAC2022-Ralph-Edwards-web.jpgFor Ralph, a resident in the Bolton Clarke Milford Grange Retirement Community, April is always a poignant time. With the Centenarian’s 103rd birthday only days before Anzac Day, he remembers with great pride the time of his service.

Born in Roma, in central western Queensland, on 21 April 1919, Ralph served Australia in World War II in the Citizens Military Forces and then the Australian Imperial Force, spending time in Labuan, Borneo working on 40,000-gallon prefabricated steel fuel tanks.

Remarkably Ralph is still living independently, a testament to his hardy nature. Much like Bill, Ralph credits his long life to a healthy lifestyle of no smoking, regular exercise and sensible diet high in vegetables, fruit, grains and the occasional glass of sherry.

ANZAC2022-Artie-service-web.jpgArthur was just 21 when he enlisted for military service. He has vivid memories of his time as a graphic surveyor in Darwin and further time in Borneo and Papua New Guinea during World War II.

Art, or Artie as he is lovingly called, celebrated his 104th birthday in March and claims he still has a few good years left!  He has played a vital role in the rich history of the Bolton Clarke Fernhill community as well as the wider Caboolture surrounds which he has always called home.