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Association Badge Vietnam Campaign Ribands 7Platoon Badge


Welcome to the website of C Coy, 5 RAR,
we hope that you enjoy your visit.


"Our God and soldier, men alike adore,
Just at the brink of ruin, not before.
The danger past, both alike requited,
God is forgotten, and the soldier slighted."

Thomas Jordan 1612-1686

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C Company Members
point Quintus Rama - RIP - see below [2 May '19]
point Boots GP - see below [2 May '19]
point RAR Colours Parade moved to 5 RAR Archives [29 Mar '19]
point Paddy Cahill's Story - see below [15 Feb '19]
point 'Message from the Unkonwn Soldier' added to Poems Archives [3 Jan '19]


Map

I have been able to mark the '1ATF Area' and some of the areas where we conducted Operations in Google Maps, the image is above.


To read the Australian War Memorial's description of 5th Battalion The Royal Australian Regiment early service »click here.«.


LINKS TO ARCHIVED ITEMS

If you are looking for an article that has previously been on this site, please check in the Achives and you should find it there.

Members' Poetry  |   Video & Audio  Photo Albums   |   Articles Archive  Current 5 RAR Archives



C COMPANY NEWS






SPARE A THOUGHT PLEASE

RAR Badge

Private John R. Sweetnam, 20.
Melbourne, Victoria.


Sweetnam J R

The repetitive life of a postal officer persuaded Private Sweetnam to enlist in the army in September, 1964.

John, a member of 8 Platoon, was killed in an exchange of small arms fire as his platoon conducted a dawn search-and-destroy patrol in Long My, Phuoc Tuy Province on June 9 1966.

A mate remembers: John Sweetnam was my mate. He was the sort of bloke who would notice you had forgotten your hat, because you often forgot your hat and stick it on your head about the time you missed it saying, 'useless bastard'. He was the voice beside us ..."come on, we're all mates here together, so let it go." The sober voice reminding, "on parade at six mate ...we've got to go!"

And in the silence of a dripping wet twilight 'stand-too', where leaden eyelids followed chin to the dust-cover, it was his -- the gentle push to my shoulder. We swore that we would make it, each one for the other. Now on that special day when the Tiger mates all gather, to slap and laugh together, to tease that special brother, for me there is one missing ... more than just a mate; he was indeed my brother.

Official commemoration: NSW - Woronora Crematorium
Commemoration Position: Niche 5 Q


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QUINTUS RAMA - RIP

It is with great sadness we share with you the passing of the 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment Mascot CPL Quintus Rama on 2 May 2019 at 17 years of age.

8555555 CPL Quintus Rama was born in Feb 2002 and enlisted into the Australian Army as the 5th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment’s mascot on 15 August 2012 whereupon he resided at the Northern Territory’s Crocodylus Park.

As the Battalion Mascot, he participated in numerous ceremonial events such as the 50th year anniversary Freedom of Entry March into Darwin in 2015 and ANZAC Day parades.

CPL Quintus Rama was given a small military ceremony by the CO, RSM and other members of the Battalion on 2 May 2019. CPL Quintus Rama was a beloved member of the unit and families who came to know him over the years at Crocodylus Park, he will be sorely missed.


Quintus Rama’s body is marched from Crocodylus Park, led by CO LTCOL Travis Gordon, 2IC MAJ Cameron Ellis, Adjutant CAPT Harvey Browne and members of the battalion.

Rest in Peace CPL Quintus Rama your duty is done.


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BOOTS GP - TOOK LONG ENOUGH



They really must have pondered over this for many years when, if they had asked us, we could have told them immediately!

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A DAY AT BRIAN BUDDEN'S

On Monday 1 April, Carol and I visited Brian Budden at his home in Coopers Shoot, Northern NSW, one of the reasons for this particular visit was the fact that Alan and Marian McNulty were visiting Brian, they had just returned from a South Pacific cruise out of Sydney and had been asked by Brian to visit for a few days. Geoff Luck (B Coy 1966-67) was also visiting and a very pleasant day was had by all.



The photo above shows Geoff, myself, Alan and Brian after we had completed a very satisfying lunch.


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2 OF 5 RAR'S DEPLOYMENTS
SINCE DE-LINKING

I have added articles about two of 5 RAR's active deployments since de-linking in December 2006.

The earliest one was where a platoon from Bravo Company, the 5th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment (5 RAR) are currently deployed with Battle Group Balmoral, the fourth rotation of the Timor Leste Battle Group (TLBG 4). To read the article about the Timor Leste Battle Group (TLBG 4), just »Click Here«.

The second was in 2010 with the 5 RAR led Battle Group, MTF-2, started its Mission Specific Training in Afghanistan. To read the article about Afghanistan Mentoring Task Force 2 (MTF-2) in Afghanistan, just »Click Here«.

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PADDY CAHILL'S STORY

I have added an article, published in Tiger Tales, telling about the life of Paddy Cahill, the C Company SGT Cook on both tours.

After this article was published we discovered that on 26 January 1976, Paddy Cahill, was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM). It is also possible, but yet to be confirmed, that Paddy was awarded the National Medal on 14 July 1977. I have added this to the article.

To read the Paddy Cahill article just »Click Here«.

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2018 5 RAR DARWIN BALL

Two Vietnam era Tigers at the 5 RAR Annual Ball Darwin wearing battalion bow ties, they seemed to be enjoying themselves extremely well.

Ball


If any members are interested in obtaining one of these unique items they should contact me, using this Email Contact Form, or on 0412 767 975. I will then collate the requests and forward the list to Brian. The bow ties would be on a once only, 'first in, best dressed' situation and if the enough numbers are requested, Brian would get a price from the maker for 100, which is the minimum number for an order. He would then work out the cost of the tie and postage to individuals and contact all on the list to confirm their order and explain payment details.


Ball

If it is produced, the final product will differ from the one shown above, with the Gold stripe being replaced by a Green-Gold-Green stripe to indicate the current 5 RAR Colour Patch. As the ties would have to be produced overseas it would take some time to have them arrive in Australia from the time of ordering.

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OPERATION CANARY
4 to 14 December 1966

Operation Canary was a Corps route-security operation on Route 15 conducted by HQ II Field Force, Vietnam (II FFV) with 5 RAR and B Company 6 RAR to protect troop convoys carrying 199 Light Infantry Brigade (US) through Vung Tau on deployment to South Vietnam. 1 ATF was responsible for route security in an AO from Ba Ria to Phu My, approximately 20 kilometres, Operation Canary was supported by three Fire Support Bases (FSB) and two Mortar Base Plate Positions (MBPP).

This was extremely arduous work for the infantry soldiers as it was carried out in the heat of a dry summer with no shelter or trees along the coastal strip. The terrain was flat, becoming undulating to the north and east of Route 15 and covered in a variety of vegetation from grassland to jungle or clear forest with rice, brushwood and mangrove to the South and East.

The Viet Cong were believed to be using the Nui Thi Vai, Nui Ong Trinh and Nui Dinh Mountains to the north and east of Route 15 as base areas and for observation over Route 15 traffic. Enemy activity was expected to be limited to action by the Chau Duc District Company and local guerrilla platoons.

Excerpts from Fire Support Bases Vietnam: Australian and Allied Fire Support Base


Huey

A UH-1B Iroquois helicopter of No 9 squadron RAAF lifts off from a fire support base on route 15, carrying members of C Company, 5th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment (5 RAR). The helicopter had just dropped members of 6th Battalion's (6 RAR) B Company at the base. The Battalion was supported by B Company, 6 RAR, on Operation Canary to safeguard the US Army's 9th Infantry Division, which had just arrived in Vietnam.

Photo and article courtesy of AWM


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THE MEN of C COY 1966/67 - 'THEN and NOW'

Since 2007 I have been endeavouring to collect photos of all the men who served with C Coy, 5 RAR in South Vietnam 1966/67.

The project, called 'Then and Now', lists all men that we know of who served with C Coy and includes name, Known As, their rank and sub-unit where we are aware of them. Where possible there are two photos of each man, one from the Vietnam Era and the second is a recent photo.

We now have both photos of 116 men, plus 1 that we only have a 'Now' photo of, 42 that we do not have a 'Then' photo of and only 11 men that we do not have any photos of. This is a total of the 170 men that we know served in C Company in Vietnam 1966-67.

We are still actively looking for the members with whom we have lost contact and if any visitor is able to help by using this Email Contact Form, it would be greatly appreciated.

To see a list of the 19 Members that we have no contact details for »Click Here«.

If anybody can help with any of the photos that are missing it would be greatly appreciated, I can be contacted by using this Email Contact Form.

If you wish to see the current 'Then and Now' Project click below, it is quite a large file so please be patient. When you have finished looking at the Project, just close the window or tab that was opened. »Click Here«.

Gary Townsend  

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CONTRIBUTIONS NEEDED

This is a web-site that has been designed to be interesting, informative and, above all else, to preserve the close bonds that were formed between the men of C Company, 5 RAR, those many years ago. It will only survive if it is regularly updated and renewed with items, photos and anecdotes from the men who were part of C Company of 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment, during 1966/67 in South Vietnam.

Therefore, if you were one of the select few who were privileged to be a member of 'Chuckles Company', please contribute any of your memories, photos or anecdotes that others would enjoy. It does not matter how small and inconsequental you may think it is, it is part of our history and will be enjoyed by the members. Please use this Email Contact Form if you can add to the content of this site.

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ARCHIVES


MEMBERS' POETRY
RED ANTS
Terry Tommasi 1966
NUI DAT
Terry Tommasi, Op Hardihood
FIRST TIME SHOOT UP
Terry Tommasi June 1966
AMBUSH
Terry Tommasi 6 June 1966
A TRACK NUI THI VAI
Terry Tommasi October 1966
B52'S
TERRY TOMMASI 1967
XA AN NHUT
Terry Tommasi 14 February 1967
LONG HAI'S
Terry Tommasi 21 February 1967
ECHOES OF REMEMBRANCE
Robert Kearney
LADS
Robert Kearney
A SOLDIER AND HIS DOG
Bill Charlton
WHERE THE RUBBER GROWS
Robert Cavill
WALLY
Bill Charlton
NOT A REAL WAR
Robert Cavill
SGT R L ORCHARD
Bill Charlton
MESSAGE FROM THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER
Robert Kearney
   
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VIDEO AND AUDIO ARCHIVE
7 PLATOON - '66/67

Some film taken in the 7 Platoon lines in 1966.

MUSHROOM CLUB

The Mushroom Club, C Coy Lines and Luscombe Field.

HOT EXTRACTION

Infantry sections being extracted by Huey Slicks.

8 PLATOON - '66/67

Footage taken around 8 Platoon lines in 1966.

BACK BEACH 1966

Footage taken at Back Beach Vung Tau, 1966.

CHECKPOINT DUTY

Checkpoint duty and a helicopter flight.

AUDIO RECORDINGS

Interviews with 5 RAR members in 1966, held by the AWM.

THE FIGHTING FIFTH

A newsreel of 5 RAR's Return to Australia in 1967.

 
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PHOTO ALBUMS
VIETNAM - 1966/67

Photos taken by the members of C Coy during their time in SVN, 1966-67.

BACK TO VIETNAM

Photos taken by members who have travelled back to Vietnam in recent years.

Back To Page Links Toolbar

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ARTICLES ARCHIVES
The Orderly Room Return to Vietnam 2005 Nui Dat/Vung Tau 2009
'All The King's Enemies' Review Active 8 - Wainwright's Warriors 8 Platoon's Viet Cong Flag
RSL Salute - Fact or Fiction Language Course Info Needed 'Starlight' Book Review
5 RAR Canungra Plaque Warning Letter, Jack Lake Stretch's Story
Nui Dat Street Signs 9 Pl Roll Book 1967 Patrol Reports 1967
MCI Ration Packs Ham and Lima Beans Letter to the Queen
Roger's Portland Address Vietnam, The Aust. Experience War Diaries Mar-May 1966
Doug Bishop's Portland Report Portland Observer articles C Coy Bayonet Charge
Shadow The 'Furphy' VC Tax Collectors
Tragedy at An Nhut Close Leashed Closing the Mushroom Club
Blondes, Bombs & Bunkers Ray Orchard's Funeral The Section Commander
Passing of John Deane-Butcher Welcome Home Parade The Colours
2015 Reunion Placemats JD Allen's Medals Renewal of Memorial Wall
ANZAC Day Symbols & Traditions Alan McNulty's return to Phouc Tuy Rededication of M Tomas Memorial
AVV Museum, Phillip Island C Coy Photo 1967 7, 8 & 9 Pl Photos 1965
SGT Paddy Cahill C Coy Cook Operation Canary Dec 1966  
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SELECTED LINKS



To visit the 5 RAR Association Website click here.

To view the full archives of Tiger Tales click here.

The December 2018 issue of Tiger Tales can be viewed by Clicking Here.



To visit the Vietnam Veterans Social Golf Club Website click here.


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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I would like to acknowledge the assistance, support and contributions that have been provided by Ted Harrison, the 5 RAR Association Web-Master, all former members of C Company, 5 RAR 1966/67, and members of other units/sub-units who have contributed to make this site possible.

My thanks go to the following contributors; John Bilston, Robert Birtles, Doug Bishop, Kevin Borger OAM, Warren Bradd OAM, Russell Briggs, Dave Bryan, Brian Budden, Tom Case, Robert Cavill, Bill Charlton, Tom Davern, Ray Ferrier (film footage), Dave French, Warren Gosney, Don Harrod, John Hellyer, Bill Hunt, Robert Kearney, Paul La Forest, Roger Lambert, Harvey Lear, Matt Lewis, Daryl McCombe, Abe Melki, Harry Neesham, Geoff Pearson, Ron Shambrook AM, Syd Shore (film footage), Terry and Greg Tommasi, Michael Wahl, Roger Wainwright and Dennis Wegener.

I would also like to aknowledge the Australian War Memorial for their courtesy in allowing us the use of their archives.




Website by Gary Townsend

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