'Bevan Lennie' Artillery Luncheon 2013

The mid-year Artillery Luncheon was held at Club City (City of Sydney RSL) on Wednesday 12 June. Once again a very enjoyable luncheon was organised by Laurie Manning, providing an opportunity to get together in the middle of the year, especially for those members who are unable to attend the Gunner Dinner.
The guest speaker was BDR Shane Fender , from 7 LT BTY , who joined the gathering to recount the highlights of his tour with OPERATION ANODE to the Solomon Islands. He was part of an Army Reserve company, formed mainly from soldiers from 5 BDE. Prior to deployment the company underwent an extensive period of preparation and training culminating in a sign off by 1 DIV, that the members and unit were fit for the task.

Shane spoke about the stabilisation that was needed following the unrest and violence in Honiara and the process of supporting the UN RAMSI program of assistance. Shane deployed as a signaller and operated in a range of situations from urban patrolling in Honiara, through to landing on remote islands, where they met indigenous groups that had not seen foreign soldiers since the US Marines left after WW2. On one of these islands a local resident pointed out two trees, where the Marine signallers had rigged an aerial aided by the resident's grandfather. He set about assisting Shane to rig an aerial to establish communications back to HQ.

The luncheon gathering thoroughly enjoyed Shane’s recounting of what has been quite a successful program bringing great credit on the UN program and those participating including the members of the Army Reserve.


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