Could I please use your column to thank all the people who have helped me with information and photos of our local champion boxers and their trainers.
This has made the display so much more interesting and has enlightened me and all who see it of how many champion boxers came from our town and a special time in the history of Young that will now not be lost.
I would especially like to thank my brother Alf for the starting me on this journey into learning of our champion boxers and their stories.
“Thank you for your service”
There are more than 80,000 men and women of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) who put on our nation’s uniform and are prepared to place themselves in harm’s way to help others who can’t necessarily help themselves.
On a recent visit to troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, I had the opportunity to talk to hundreds of ADF personnel involved in training and advising local security forces. I met some of Australia’s finest young men and women, pulled together from every corner of the country and united with a great sense of patriotism and purpose to their lives.
On every occasion, I passed on one message from the Australian people: ‘thank you for your service’. It’s a simple phrase but it can mean a lot when you are spending months away from your loved ones; working in 50 degree heat; concerned for your personal safety; and removed from the simple pleasures of Australian life.
As Australians, we don’t tend to go for the bravado of our American friends and the intensely patriotic recognition of their troops. Caring for our veterans and their families is the best way to honour the service and sacrifice of all those men and women who have served our nation in uniform over the past century. It is also the best way to ensure that their legacy endures and is never forgotten.
But perhaps we need to put aside some of our normally reserved Australian nature and publicly recognise our Navy, Army and Airforce personnel and their families beyond ANZAC Day. A simple message of ‘thank you for your service’ each time you meet someone in a military uniform is a good start.
The Hon. Darren Chester
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel
STAFFING IS CRUCIAL
No one would argue that high-calibre teacher quality is of utmost importance to education but what about ensuring that rural and remote schools are staffed?
I have worked in rural education for more than 30 years and the reality is that trained teachers, especially in maths, science and technology subjects are very scarce. Rural schools are by their very nature disadvantaged and their staffing needs should be of paramount concern to any government committed to equity and excellence in education.
Sharelle Fellows, Gulgong
A WATER WAKE-UP
I recently encountered a man using litres of water trying to hose a stubborn leaf off his footpath. When I ventured to suggest this was a waste of water he replied that it was his money and if he wanted to spend it on water, it was his choice. There is a lot of ignorance to overcome.