Background on how Rupert McCall
became aware of the poem "The Lonely forward Scout" and
his families' involvements in Australia's military.
Although we are a generation apart
both Rupert McCall and myself played for Brothers Rugby
Union club in Brisbane. From a former front rower
Rupert, as a former winger, is not a bad bloke.
After Brothers 2010 AGM I showed
Rupert a copy of "The Lonely Forward Scout" which I had
on my mobile phone.
As we talked Rupert mentioned that
his grandfather was a "Rat Of Tobruk". I mentioned that
my Dad was also a "Rat". Then Rupert mentioned that his
late father in law was a Vietnam Veteran. His name was
Ashley Greenway. He was in my intake (9th Intake 12 July
1967). Ashley went to 4 RAR and I went to 9 RAR. We've
been holding reunions for our intake for some years now
and most of our people went to 4 RAR. When I circulated
this to our group they sent back old photos of Ashley.
So that's the connection and maybe
explains some of Rupert's interest in Australia's
My old college of Saint Columban's
(now located at Caboolture) invited us back for their
Anzac Day Commemoration. When I showed Deputy Principal
Frank McCullagh the poem he "volunteered" Ben Schumach
to read the poem. So that's how Ben got into Rupert's
Rupert is certainly a master of his
I arranged for Derek Nixon-Smith to
have lunch with Rupert and I and another Vietnam
Veteran, Gerard Loth. Like Ben I "volunteered" to read
the poem at the 2010 9 RAR Memorial Service. By way of
background I had a chat to Derek before the ceremony.
Derek is a most unassuming person who thinks there are
many people much worse off than himself. He spent
several years in and out of military hospitals
recovering from serious head wounds and even today has
no peripheral vision.
Rupert has captured all the essential
detail from that lunch as well as from the photo I sent
him of Ben reading the poem.
Rupert's original hopes were to
publish the article on Easter Sunday which was the day
before Anzac Day this year. That not being possible he
asked me for some suggestions as to alternative dates.
Yesterday's date is close to the anniversary of both the
"contact" and the first moon landing. There is a copy of
extracts from 9 RAR's "Tour Book" concerning the
incident. Use the Hyperlink "The Lonely Forward Scout"
to the left of this article.
Well done Rupert and thanks.
Hyperlink to Rupert's website is:
18 July 2011.