Association News and Updates

Sean O'Boyle AM

(26 Jan 2015)


Mr Sean Michael O'BOYLE, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 18018, United States of America For significant service to music as a composer, conductor, musician, performer and musical director.

Artist in Residence, Moravian College, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA, focusing on Australian music, 2011 - 2012; Artist Lecturer, since 2013. Founder and Artistic Director, Bethlehem Composers Orchestra, Bethlehem United States of America, since 2013.

Developed and conducted more than 400 performances, Queensland Orchestra's Kiddies Cushion Concerts, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, 1993 - 2010. Composer, Music Director, Queensland Ballet Company, since 2004. Composed two operas and toured and performed for over 70,000 school children, Opera Queensland. Adjudicator, Queensland Education Department, FANFARE. Composer, Conductor, Orchestrator, Recording Producer, since 1994. Approximately 100 albums in collaboration with Australian Broadcasting Commission, Composed music for Gardening Australia, New Eden, Composed, ABC's Olympic theme, 2000; performed, Commonwealth Games, Manchester, 2002; Olympic Games, Athens, 2004; Composed Concerto for Didgeridoo And Orchestra, ranked #32 in the ABC Classic FM The Classic 100 Concerto's and #87 in ABC Classic 100 - 20th Century. Music Director and Composer, Feature film A Heartbeat Away, 2010. Wrote and arranged music for The Rugby League World Cup, 2013 and The Ashes Cricket Competition, 2009.

Ambassador, Australian Children's Music Foundation, since 2003. Former Board member, Major Brisbane Festivals, 2007 - 2011; Music Director, various productions, since 1998. Guest Conductor, Queensland Education Department Creative Generation State Schools Onstage, MOST (Musically Outstanding Students) Awards. Artist Advisor, Barrier Reef Orchestra.

Fellow, Australian Society of Composers & Musicologists; Council member. Appointed Fellow, North & Midlands School of Music. (United Kingdom) Member, Australasian Performing Rights Association. Member, Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance. Member, Fellowship of Australian Composers.

Sick Parade - Len Haines

(4 Jan 2015)

Association member Lindsay Hobden has advised that Joan Haines, wife of Len Haines contacted him last Friday and advised that Len is not well and has been in and out of hospital over the past few weeks. Lindsay says he's visited him and said Len is very frail and has speech problems.  Further information will be posted as it comes to hand.

Noteworthy - December Distribution

(22 Dec 2014)

Due to the lateness of some inclusions the December issue of 'Noteworthy', the Association Newsletter will not be distributed until the second week of January 2015.  

The President and members wish all members and families members a safe and Merry Christmas and a properous New Year

Sons of ANZAC's Vietnam Memorial Tour - 2015 - Reminder

In 2013 the association posted information regarding a 2015 Vietnam Memorial Tour. It read.... In 2015 the centennial of the landing at Anzac Cove will be commemorated and coincidentally a significant anniversary for Vietnam Veterans, being 50 years since the deployment of the first battle group. That deployment went on to last 10 years.  To commemorate this fact 'Mat McLaughlan Battle Field Tours' and Gary McDonald (Retd) a prolific author and historian on Vietnam will be tour leaders and lecturers at the sites of Australia's major engagements. Further details of this tour can be obtained on the following website address: Details of the tour can be found there with contact information.

Updated Agent Orange Exposure Disability List

(20 Dec 2014)

A copy of the list can be found on the Veterans Information Page.


Vale Ray Oliphant

(18 Dec 2014)

Association member Don Jarrett has advised the passing of Ray Oliphant on Mon 15 Dec 2014.  Ray was a former member of RMC Band and was later commissioned in the Education Corps.  

The association send their sincere condolences to Ray's family and friends.   RIP

2014 AABC Association Award Recipient

(11 Dec 2014)

The recipient of the 2014 AABC Association Award announced by the CO Australian Army Band is Corporal David Portakiewicz of 10/27 Battalion Band, The Royal South Australia Regiment.  The presentation of the award of a minstrel boy statuette and a framed citation will be made at the earliest opportunity in 2015. View the Citation.


Vale Bill Quirk

(7 Dec 2014)

Bill Honter of Perth has advised the passing of Bill Quirk on Tue 2 Dec 2014.  Bill was a Percussionist and former member of Engineers Band in the 50's, Eastern Command Band, Artillery Band and later served in Vietnam with 1 RAR Band.  After the Army he served in the RAAF Central Band.  Bill's funeral was held on Fri 12 Dec 2014 at Port Kennedy, WA.  

The AABC Association send their sincere condolences to Bill's family and freinds.  RIP 

Vale Laurie Lewis

(14 Nov 2014)

Knobby Neilsen has advised the association of the sad passing of friend and colleague Laurie Lewis aged 73, who passed away on Wed 12 Nov 2014 at around 2130h.  Laurie had been ill for some time and was in Palliative Care at Townsville General Hospital at the time of his passing.  Laurie served the Corps in a number of postings, which included 1RAR Band (attached), 5 RAR Band, Engineers Band, NQ Army Band and 6 MD Band. He was awarded an MID whilst serving in Vietnam with 5 RAR.  The funeral for the late Laurie Lewis was held at Morley's Funeral Home on Thu 20 Nov 2014. 

The AABC Association pass on their sincere condolences to his wife Sally and his family. RIP


2015 AABC Association Reunion (Adelaide)

(12 Nov 2014)

Confirmation has been received from the South Austraian Chapter of the AABC Association advising that reunion dates for 2014 are Fri 16 Oct - Sun 18 Oct 2015. The Executive Committee suggest that if you intend attending that you start planning for this reunion.

DVD Release "Our Country Call"

(5 Nov 2014)

Alan Winter has written to the association requesting that we spread the word regarding a new DVD release.  "Our Country's Call" is a poem and song he wrote in 2013 and which, due to popular demand is about to be released nationally as a DVD so were able to use selected imagery to compliment the already poignant lyrics.  AABC Association member Barry Rodgers, one of our retired members was instrumental in developing the song for concert band.  

A concert for Legacy on the Sunshine Coast wias held on Sat 8 Nov where the new DVD was launched.  "Our Country's Call" is dedicated to Australians from many cultural and ethnic backgrounds who have served in times of conflict.

After the release, all national sales of the DVD will be handled by DFWA and profits retained by them. 

You can assist DFWA by promoting the video and website and directing people to a Youtube clip at "Our Country's Call Australia".  This is a short clip of the song and has the full lyrics in poem form.  We expect DFWA will be set up for sales within a day or two.

We hope you are able to assist in promoting the DVDs availability.

Alan Winter


Vale Erna Silk

(29 Oct 2014)

Graeme Silk, son of the late Jack Silk advised the association of the passing of Erna Silk aged 90 years on Tue 18 Oct 2014.  The funeral was held at St Jude's Catholic Church, Holder on Wed 5 Nov 2014. Letters of condolence can be forwarded to Graeme at 4 Leibitz Place, Isabella Plains, ACT, 2905, or you can contact him on: 0411 033 992.  

The AABC Assoociation send their sincere condolences to the family.  RIP 

2014 Annual General Meeting Postponement

(27 Oct 2014)

Due to only a limited number of AABC Association members that have committed to sail aboard P&O Pacific Jewel on Fri 7 Nov 2014 – Mon 10 Nov 2014 for the 2014 Reunion Cruise, the Executive Committee has decided to carry over the 2014 Annual General Meeting until October 2015 when our annual reunion will be held in Adelaide, SA.  

RAR Foundation Tertiary Scholarship Scheme

(23 Oct 2014)

The COLCOMDT AABC has passed onto LTCOL Lambie, CO AAB some interesting information regarding the potential opportunity for those of our team past and present with service in 1 RAR Band. The RAR Foundation provide support to battalions and education assistance to children of those who have served in the Regiment regardless of corps or gender.

In 2013  the Foundation launched  their  tertiary scholarship scheme which provides $3,000 per year to successful applicants for each year of their tertiary education.  The scheme will continue in 2015 and applications are now open for three scholarships to commence in 2015.  Details of the scheme and the Foundation can be found at

The scholarship criteria is relatively simple – the applicant must be the legally recognised child of a soldier who has served or is serving in the Royal Australian Regiment.  Tertiary includes vocational and college courses. Anyone who has served in 1 RAR Band and has eligible children will meet the criteria. There are likely to be many whose children meet the criteria and may be competitive for selection. 

Pls disseminate and promote far and wide. 

LTCOL Gordon Lambie

Pension Increase for the Veteran Community: Media Release 19 Sep 2014

(26 Sep 2014)

From 20 Sep 2014, veterans, their partners, war widows and widowers across Australia will see an increase to their pensions.

Click here to read the News Release for details.

Sick Parade Update - Kevin Klein

(6 Sep 2014)

Whilst visiting Bundaberg recently I called in on Kevin Klein at his home.  He looked fine and and advised that he was feeling as well as to be expected.  He said he had visted his Doctor just a few weeks ago and had undergone further breathing tests, which revealed the results were not good.  He says he can still drive, but has problems after walking short distances and he suffers shortness of breath.  Kevin says he needs to visit his Doctor each month and says eventually he may be admitted to hospital for further treatment.  His wife Judy is coping, but says Kevin is positive and hopefully ongoing treatment will help him cope with his prognosis.  If you wish to contact Kevin phone: 07 4152 8807.  I'm sure he would like to hear from you.  More updates as they come to hand.

Kevin is a much respected member of the association and our thoughts and prayers go out to Kevin and Judy at this time. 


North Queensland Army Band History

30 Aug 2014)

Calling all former members of North Queensland Army Band (NQAB).  Jane Ryder, daughter of our very own Andy Ryder, is currently undertaking her Honours in History at the James Cook University in Townsville.  Jane has chosen to do her thesis on the history of North Queensland Army Band and is seeking your assistance in her bid to research this unique organisation.  She is looking at travelling to Melbourne, Canberra and Brisbane shortly in the hope to conduct individual/group interviews with as many former members of NQAB as she can. I think this is a wonderful opportunity for the history of this great unit to be recorded and I applaud Jane's enthusiasm in wanting to undertake such a task.

I  urge all former members to do a number of things to assist Jane: Firstly if you are able to spare some time to be interviewed by Jane she would very much appreciate this and secondly I would ask you all to cast your net far and wide throughout your vast networks and track down as many former members of NQAB as you can and pass those details on to Jane. I am more than confident that you will be willing to have a chat to her. Call me any time if you want to discuss this and I thank you all in advance for any help you may be able to give Jane.

John Franklin
Mob: 0407 312 035

Vale Harry Jenkin, OAM

(20 Aug 2014)

Association member, Bill Honter advised that former OC/Music Director Captain Harry Jenkin, OAM, Retd, passed away in hospital on Mon 18 Aug 2014.  Harry’s postings included serving in:

  • 4 RAR (Vietnam): Sep 68 - May 69 (WO2)

  • Townsville Area Band: Apr 68 - Sep 68 (WO2)

  • RA Infantry Corps Band: May 69 - Jul 73 (WO2) (Townsville)

  • RA Signals Band: Aug 73 - Jan 74 (LT) (Kapooka)

  • North Queensland Army Band: Jan 74 - Jan 77 (LT)

  • 1 MD Band: Jan 77 - Jan 78 (CAPT)

  • 4 MD Band: Jan 78 - Jan 80 (CAPT)

The funeral for Harry Jenkin was held at the Pinnaroo Cemetery on Tue 26 Aug 2014.

The AABC Association pass on their sincere condolences to Laurel, the family and friends.

Important Announcement - DFRB/DFRDB Pensions

(1 Jul 2014)

From Tue 1 Jul 2014, 57,000 veterans aged 55 and over will have their Defence Forces Retirement Benefits (DFRB) scheme and Defence Force Retirement and Death Benefits (DFRDB) scheme superannuation pensions indexed fairly.

Increases were previously tied to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) only. Now - recognising the unique nature of military service - they will be calculated by the better of movements in the CPI, Male Total Average Weekly Earnings (MTAWE) and the pensioner and beneficiary living cost index. These improvements will continue in perpetuity. They are protected from changes announced to other pension indexation arrangements which come into effect in 2017.

The new scale of DFRB and DFRDB increases honours a pre-election commitment by the Government and follows a protracted fight to secure a fair go through intense lobbying and veterans’ forums with the then Shadow Minister and now Veterans’ Affairs Minister Michael Ronaldson, MP.

Sick Parade - Ena Harper

(21 Jul 2014)

Jim Harper reports that since his wife Ena again underwent sugery recently as a result of problems identified from a previous operation she had in April 2013.  Jim has advised that Ena has had to spent a long time in hospital in hospital trying to get her strength back so she can begin her rehabilitation. He says Ena is still weak, has lost lots of weight and is very depressed. He says the Doctor has advised that because she has been laid up for some time now she will virtually need to learn to walk again.  Ena is now home undergoing her rehabilitation and trying to regain her weight.  Both have been through a lot in the past year with Ena in hospital and Jim having broken his knee cap on Anzac Day and who is finding it difficult to get around, so if you wish to contact Jim to cheer him up and provide some comfort I'm sure he would appreciate the call. His number is: 0408 039 776

The association send their best wishes to Ena and hope she regains her strength and can start her rehabilitation for a full recovery.

Sick Parade - Ken Hussell

(16 May 2014)

Ken has advised the association that he has just been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer.  He says the cancer is most aggressive and since last week all bone structures have been attacked. Ken says all hope now rests with the specialist in Orange and we hope we can see him at the earliest.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ken for a full recovery.

air Indexatioin Bill (FIB) - Government Delivers on its Promise

(28 Mar 2014)

The Government's FIB has been passed in the Senate in March this year. This means that the implementation for those DFRB/DFRDB superannuates covered by this Bill will be effective from the 1 Jul 2014.

ADSO thanks the Coalition Government for implementing their 2010 pledge and congratulates all, especially Sen. Michael Ronaldson for championing the case, and all those who were involved in contributing to this result.

While pleased with this success, ADSO regards it as a first step to the achievement of the same fairness for those excluded from this Bill: namely, DFRB/DFRDB superannuates under aged 55 years, and MSBS members.

The Hansard report on the Senate debate will be available shortly.

Stop Press (Fri 16 May): DFWA have advised there will be no change to the decision above despite budget changes to the Old Age Pension.


AABC Association Membership Database Update and Upgrade 

(30 Dec13)

Hi my name is Dave Oakley, a member of the AABC Association and I have volunteered to update the Secretary and Treasurers spreadsheets to a central database. Because of the two spreadsheets in use at present we have conflicting data which for obvious reasons needs either updating or confirmation, and that is where you the members come in.  Any information entered into this central database will remain strictly confidential and will not be divulged to any outside parties.

My intention is that eventually the database will be hosted in a central website location which only key Association members will have access to.
The purpose of the database is to centralise the data we hold and be able to produce reports, mailing labels and correspondence to members all from a central location.

I would appreciate it if members could print off and complete the form below and return it to me at . If you dont have access to a computer forward to my home address: 14 Radnor Street, Morphett Vale, SA 5162  You may also contact me on or call 0438 951 738 if you need to discuss this or ask any questions.

Dave Oakley

Database upgrade form


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. 


I & K Music - Quality Brass and Woodwind Instruments 

(25 Jul 2013)

If any of the members are interested in purchasing a new instrument for themselves, a family member or a student, you may be interested in a company in Melbourne that produce hand crafted instruments that represent quality and unprecedented value for money.  The company is called I & K Music. I was recently advised by an association members who had purchased an instrument/s from the company that they were extremely pleased with their purchase and highly recommend I & K Music to you.  The I & K Music website has details of each instrument with prices.  When you view a particular instrument on the website it lists a sale price also, which in most cases is half the advertised price.  I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised! The website address is:


Change of Address, Email or Phone Details 

(8 Jul 2013)

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.


Website Events Calendar 

(22 May 2012)

A reminder that members can forward details of performances, reunions, meetings etc. to be added to the website calendar. Please forward information to Stu Colhoun.


AABK History Exhibition 

(14 May 2013)

On behalf of the AABC Association I wish to congratulate the Museum of the Riverina, Historical Council Chambers site, Wagga Wagga for their excellent exhibition of 'The History of the AABK, Instrumental in Defence', the display running from Fri 1 Mar and closed on Sun 5 May 2013. Thank you to all those people who helped make this display possible.  I'm advised by the curator Jeni Bradley-Cahalan that the exhibition was well attended during its duration and that lots of interest was shown by the people of Wagga Wagga, school children and visitors to the region. I visited the museum last month and was impressed by the extensive exhibition of memorabilia, historical photographs and stories, which covered the history of the Australian Army Band Kapooka (AABK), formally known as the Kapooka Band, Royal Australian Engineers Band, Royal Australian Signals Band and the 1st Recruit Traning Battalion Band. Congratulations!


Sick Parade Page

The Association website has many 'Sick Parade' posts that are well out of date and depending on the member/s concerned some posts need to be either updated or deleted. If you're one of the members that are listed in the page please advise the Secretary of your updated condition or situation. Thank you.


AABCA Forum website 


The AABCA Forum website is now active. To access the forum follow the AABCA Forum link on the menu. Please check it out, have a go at registering and adding a post. If you have any questions please contact the Forum Moderator Ralph Newman


Change of Address Details 

If any member has changed their personal details. eg. phone, mobile numbers or email address, please advise Kevin Noon, the Association Secretary at