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Active 8 SignThe sign (left) was painted in Vietnam for 8 Platoon, C Coy, 5RAR by 2781441 Lance Corporal Brian Budden, the Intelligence NCO for C Coy, 5th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment. The sign was fixed to a rubber tree at the entrance to the platoon tent lines at Nui Dat. 8 Platoon identified themselves as 'Wainwright's Warriors' after their platoon commander Lieutenant Roger Wainwright who commanded the platoon in Vietnam during 1966-67. The 'Active 8' in the centre of the signboard is linked to the Esso Petroleum Company advertising slogan of the time, which stated 'Active 8 is great mate - put a Tiger in your tank'. This seemed appropriate, as the 5RAR mascot was a Bengal Tiger and the petrol slogan also recognised 8 platoon's number. Prior to departing for Vietnam in April 1966, many members of the 5th Battalion attached a miniature tiger's tail (photo lower right) provided by Esso, to the petrol caps of their cars and to the kit bags they carried on deployment.

Esso Tiger Tail LT Wainwright brought the sign back to Australia and for many years it remained in the attic of his parent's house in Adelaide. It was 'rediscovered' in 1998, donated to the AWM and is on display in the Vietnam Gallery. LCPL Budden was a national service soldier who was a graphic artist in civilian life. He used these skills to create many signs throughout the 5th Battalion base area at Nui Dat

This third photo shows some of 'Wainwright's Warriors' preparing to go out on patrol with the sign in the background. The patrol's members are (l-r); Dick Criss, Alan Suckling, John Checkly ?, Frank Williams, CPL Mick Dempsey, 'Snow' Wylie, Lionel Holden, Bob Farrell.

Patrol & Sign

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