103 Medium Battery 1975
Laurie Skinner in Vietnam
3.7 inch Mark 3 Heavy Anti Aircraft Gun - Live Firing North Head Manly
No 53 of 1974 Gun Course - School of Artillery 1974
Anti Aircraft Radar No 3 Mark 7
Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery, Memorial, Canberra ACT
25 Pounder New Guinea 1944
     
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GUNNERS MEMORIES
1958

1958
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Army Efficiency

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 GUNNERS MEMORIES
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By Jack Tattis.

We think that today’s Australian Army is efficient; well the Army of days gone by ran rings around the present set up for efficiency.

Back in January 1958, as a Young 18 year old conscript, I received a special invitation to go to Ingleburn Military Camp in NSW.

Ingleburn back then, was the home of the 13th National Service Training Battalion, who’s Headquarters, was Bardia Barracks. The Battalion comprised five Companies namely, A (Alpha), B (Bravo), C (Charlie), D (Delta) & E (Echo).

E Company was the Artillery Company, staffed and Commanded by Gunners, wherein all recruits were trained and posted to units of the Royal Australian Artillery (RAA). In later years the corps (RAA) became the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery, being still referred to as RAA.

Anyway back to efficiency.

The instructors and staff at Ingleburn were all World War II veterans, as evidenced by the medal ribbons on their uniforms, where they no doubt had learnt how to be super efficient.

There came a day when the Company was lined up by Platoons, there were 4 platoons to each Company, outside the RAP (Regimental Aid Post) hut.

We were given an order to remove our shirts and told we were all to receive vaccinations for all the known tropical diseases in case we had to go overseas.

As the Injections would be given in alphabetical order we lined up with the “A’s “at the front.

The procedure was you entered the hut which had a corridor down the left hand side with rooms off to the right. At the first room you stopped where your right arm was prepped with an antiseptic solution. You then proceeded down the hall to the next door where you were jabbed with a needle. But instead of removing the needle the medic unscrewed and removed the syringe portion leaving the actual needle part imbedded in your arm. You were then told go to the next door and wait. Upon arriving at the next door another syringe was screwed into the needle which was dangling from your arm and another injection was given. Once again the syringe was unscrewed and removed leaving the needle still dangling from your arm.

The same instruction was given go to the next door and wait then again the same thing. Another syringe screwed into the needle and another injection received.

This was carried out about six times. At the last injection you received your written record card of injections received and the needle was removed and you then went out of the hut.

By now your arm was getting sore and the smiling Platoon Bombardier greeted us with the warning if you want to use your arms swing them hard in a circle for at least the next ten minutes or else your arm will swell and be very sore.

What a sight, all these bare chested pale looking 18 year olds swinging their arms like crazy. That is except for the macho ones, who had fainted upon coming out into the open air and had to be revived lying on the grass.

Guess the Army saved heaps on the cost of needles and syringes by using one needle per person for all the injections. Not to mention we only had one hole in our arm, the right one at that and we were all mostly right handed, instead of several holes. Actually it would have been worse in the left arm as that is the arm you used to carry your 303 at the “slope”.

So if that is not thoughtful and efficient then what is?

As recalled  by “A 50’s era Nasho”

     
     
 
 
A Field Battery in Vietnam - Gunner Tiffy
Sergeants from the No. 1 Queensland Volunteer Artillery
Artillery In Action At Heilly France - Circa 1918
Members of 102 (Coral) Battery in Vietnam
Gunner Claude Rubin Winduss (Second from Left) in World War 1

         
         

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