Association News and Updates

Sick Parade - Byron Bootes

(26 Apr 2016)

Association member Byron Bootes has advised the association its been confirmed that he's being admitted to hospital on Fri 29 Apr to have a Kidney removed.  His hospitalisation is expected to be be around five to seven days. 

The association wish Byron well and that he has a complete recovery.

Vale LTCOL R.L. Taylor, MBE (Retd)

(22 Apr 2016)

Association member Norm Harris advised the association that former Director of Music, Bob Taylor passed away on Fri 22 Apr 2016.  

Bob's career spanned the full range from 1954 when he enlisted as a Band Boy until his appoinment as Director of Music- Army in 1982.

His family have advised that the funeral will be a private one.

The AABC Association pass on their deepest sympathy and our condolences to his wife Jill and the family.

Vale - Ern Trotter QGM

(11 Apr 2016)

Former President of the AABC Association and Life Member Ern Trotter passed away early on Mon 11 Apr 2016.  Ernie had been in hospital at the time undergoing treatment and rehabilitation. Ern was also one of the founding members of the AABC Association.

He was such a great stalwart of the Association and keeper of knowledge of the past 76 odd years of Australian Army Bands. Ernie had a prodigious memory and was a gifted story teller who gave us a good historical record of times past weaving anecdotes including individuals and recording dates and places. 

The funeral for the late Ern Trotter was held on Fri 15 Apr 2016 at the Springvale Crematorium's 'Wilson Chapel'. Members of the AABC Association attended with Neville Lloyd playing the Last Post and Rouse.  Captain Chris Martin represented the AABC.  

The AABC Association convey their condolences and deepest sympathy to Ern's wife Joyce, the family and the many friends Ernie had.  RIP.

'And The Trumpets Shall Sound'

Repatriation of Soldiers

(11 Mar 2016)

Association member Bob Keatch writes... On 8 Jan 1966 Musician/Private Mervyn Wilson and Rifleman/Private Drummer Chris Clark, both members of The 1st Battalion Royal Australian Regiment Band were killed in action during 'Operation CRIMP' by sniper fire at close range in 'Ho Bo Woods' doing what they had been trained to do as ‘Stretcher-bearer/Medics’.    This fire-fight engagement of the enemy proved the exact location of the underground headquarters and other elements of the enemy known as the ‘Chu Chi Tunnels’.   Details of fire-fight.

Their bodies were buried in Malaysia soon after this tragedy.   

After many appeals and advocating the return to Australian soil of a large number of Australian soldiers buried in Malaysia during the early part of the Vietnam War the Federal Government has now negotiated and actioned this to occur on 2nd of June with firstly a Ramp Ceremony and subsequent burials at Sydney’s Rookwood Cemetery for Mervyn Wilson and Canberra for Chris Clark on a date TBA. 

2016 AABC Association Reunion - Fremantle WA 

(1 Feb 2016) 

Confirmation was received  from Chris Mullin (POC Fremantle Reunion) that the confirmed dates for this year’s reunion being conducted in Fremantle WA are: Fri 21 Oct - Sun 23 Oct 2016).  The dates have been released now to enable members travelling to WA to take advantage of discounted fares that may be available. Detailed information which will include; venues, timings, costs and a list of recommended accommodation in Fremantle and Perth will be released in the coming weeks.  The draft format for the reunion still to be confirmed is: 

Friday 21 Oct 16

  • AABC Association Golf Trophy (am)
  • Meet & Greet (pm)

Sat 22 Oct 16

  • AGM (am)
  • AAB-Perth Concert (Perth)
  • AABC Association Dinner (pm)

Sun 23 Oct 16

  • River Cruise/Googenheimer (small groups to play onboard).  This cruise is only in the early planning stages and is yet TBC.
Note: Except for the concert being held in Perth early on Saturday afternoon the majority of reunion events are being held in Fremantle at the Tradewinds Hotel.

Sick Parade - Tom Joy (Update)

(25 Jan 2015)

Association member Tom Joy reports that it's been two weeks since his operation on his Pancreas in mid December and he says the Surgeon is happy with his progress.  He's has the stiches removed last week and says it a step closer to recovery.  He says golf is a long way off as with driving a car. The association wish Tom all the very best for a complete recovery.

Sick Parade - Jim 'Shad' Harper - Further Update

(14 Jan 2016)

Further to the update posted in early December after a lengthy period in hospital Jim reports he is improving daily with his recuperation and hopes in the coming weeks he should be back to normal.  If you wish to contact Jim I'm sure he would appreciate the call.  Mobile: 0408 039 776.

Sick Parade Update  - Stan Holland

(11 Nov 2015)

Association member Stan Holland is currently undergoing Chemotherapy Treatment for Bowel Cancer despite being given the all clear 12 months ago. His treatment will be ongoing till end of March 2016,  then if all goes to plan he will continue treatment with Chemo tablets.  His Oncologist expects a good positive outcome as Stan says he is fit and otherwise in good health and has a very strong positive mind set to beat this desease.

The association wish Stan all the very best for a complete recovery.

RSL Virtual War Memorial

(19 Oct 2015)

During the 2015 AABC Association Reunion Dinner held on Sat 17 Oct 2015 the association had the priveledge to have as their special guest speaker Ms Sharyn Roberts, General Manager, RSL Virtual War Memorial, who provided an informative presentation on the RSL Virtual War Memorial.   If any members are interested in providing information or viewing the site the details of the virtual war memorial site can be seen by clicking here:  Already information on our Patron of the AABC Association, Brigadier J.J. Shelton, DSO, MC has been posted on the memorial site

Our thanks go out to Dave Oakley, the head of the Adelaide Committee for organising Sharyn to speak and on behalf of the AABC Association we thank her for this informative presentation.  Sharyn's details are:

Ms Sharyn Roberts 
General Manager  RSL Virtual War Memorial
Direct Dial Number| 8100 7318
Mobile|  0402 434 063


An Australian Defence Covenant

(14 Sep 2015)

Queensland LNP Senator James McGrath has launched a nation-wide petitioncalling for the establishment of an Australian Defence Covenant. Senator McGrath said a Defence Covenant would act as a charter of rights for serving, discharged and retired members of the Australian Defence Force and their families. "This idea is essentially based upon the notion that the entire country has a moral obligation to the men and women who serve and have served in our armed forces, and their families," SenatorMcGrath said.

National President of the Defence Force Welfare Association (DFWA) Colonel David Jamison, Retd has welcomed Senator McGrath's initiative. "The time for adopting an Australian Military Covenant has now arrived. It flows from an understanding of the unique nature of military service, a concept now widely accepted in the wider community and universally by all sides of politics," Colonel Jamison said.

To sign this important petition you are asked to visit:

Royal Australian Engineers Band Recording

(30 Jun 2015)

In the late sixties/early seventies the RAE Band produced an album of popular tunes and music for a typical RAE Parade. Later the album was transferred to cassette.  The association is looking for any ex member of Engineers Band who may still have a copy of the record or cassette to contact the Secretary using email:  The son of former RSM James (Jim) Geoff Boughton has asked to association to assist him in finding a copy of the record or cassettte.  Your help with this request would be most appreciated.

Pension Increase for Veteran Community and Important Announcement on DFRB/DFRDB Pensions  

For details of pension increases and the Fair Indexation of Pensions Bill (FIB), please click here.

Australian Army Band Corps Association Inc Facebook Group

(16 Nov 2013)

The President, John Franklin has advised that the Australian Army Band Corps Association Inc Facebook Group has been set up to allow association members to share stories and photos quickly and easily.  It is requested that members are thoughtful and considerate about the content of their posts. 

Sick Parade Page

The Association website Sick Parade link that are well out of date will be deleted unless the person concerned advises the AABC Secretary that their condition is still current or has changed.  If you're one of the members that are listed in the page or you were the one that notified us, please advise the Secretary of your updated condition or situation.  Thank you.

Website Upgrade in Progress

Welcome to the AABC Assocation website.

This site is currently undergoing a major upgrade to improve efficiency, appearance and usability. In the interim, some pages may not display properly and some links may not work. We appreciate your patience while the upgrade proceeds. If you are unable to access something important, please send an email to  Thank you.


Changes to Details

If association members change any of their personal or contact details, please notify the Secretary ( of the change/s ASAP.  The association recently sent out important information to members by post and by email and many letters were returned to sender, or in the case of emails many were now inactive and had been changed.  We need your details so we can contact you.


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