Home' The River News : March 25th 2015 Contents 4 – The River News, Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Letters to the editor . . .
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30 years of service
Gladys Noll, 75, recent-
ly celebrated 30 years with
Waikerie Saint John Ambu-
lance Service and said there’s
no such thing as being “too
old” to help.
Mrs Noll said she decided
to join St John as a volunteer
after the death of her son
Peter, who died in a road
Music on the Murray has once
again proven to be world class
event, featuring our very own
international act alongside highly
acclaimed local artists.
Compere John Dawes opened
the night with “Welcome to
Waikerie the heart of the River-
land” and the 2000 strong crowd
agreed with him.
The SA Police Officer of the
Year was awarded to Senior Con-
stable Lindsay Filmer of Morgan on
March 19, 1995 for his outstanding
services to the community.
Such things as helping the aged
to write letters and understand
legal documents and helping the
kindy and school.
Morgan’s police officer
Magic of music on the
With Gwen Webber
WELCOME home to Heather
and Bill Anderson who have re-
cently returned to Waikerie after
being in the Northern Territory
for a few weeks outdoor cooking
for a documentary film and
The Andersons cooked for
about 25 people each day as
scenes from the story of World
War I soldier Albert Borella were
Readers would have seen
some of the film clips and inter-
views about this on the evening
Mr Borella’s grandson is play-
ing the part of his grandfather
and he had to have a riding “crash
course” in order to ride again after
Albert Borella walked from
Tennant Creek to Renner Springs
from where he rode a horse as far
as Katherine then hitched a ride
on the mail cart to Pine Creek,
then a train to Darwin only to
find there was no office at Darwin
open to enlist as a soldier.
Disappointed, but determined,
Albert Borella hopped on a steam-
er going to Townsville from Darwin
to enlist for World War I. Albert
was the only recipient of the
Victoria Cross in the Northern
Having a chat with Bill
recently, he said it was a great
experience for both himself and
Heather and they slept every night
in a swag under the stars.
Meals were always camp oven
cooked in coal except one day
when they were able to use a
As we get closer to April and
the 100th anniversary of World
War I we embrace and honour
those men and women who took
part in this significant moment in
In 1918, Albert Borella led a
platoon in an attack to straighten
the front line beyond Villers-Bret-
toneux. Albert Borella is the only
NT recipient to be awarded the
Victoria Cross, he is one of 100
Australians to receive this most
highest and prestigious award.
Residents of our communi-
ty and beyond are welcome to
attend the official opening of the
display at Waikerie RSL Clubrooms
on Wednesday, April 1 at 3pm.
District Council of Loxton
Waikerie Mayor Leon Sta-
sinowsky will open the display,
which will be part of Waikerie’s
Anzac poppy trail.
I was pleased to be part of
Waikerie Garden Club’s visit to
Strathalbyn on Sunday.
We attended an open garden
day at Cynthia and Dr Graeme
Nicholson’s home ‘SGORRA
BHREAC,’ the Gaelic translation
for ‘hill in the mist’ and how true
that would be on a foggy winter
Cynthia and Graeme give their
support to the ‘Paddlers Club’ and
opened their home and garden to
raise funds for those who have en-
dured chemotherapy and cancer
treatments throughout the year.
Members and supporters of
the Paddlers Club looked after
us with afternoon tea and walks
through the garden. With a tasty
lunch at Murray Bridge Commu-
nity Club and morning tea at a
Murray Bridge garden it was a
Thought for the week: “Never
doubt that a small group of
thoughtful committed citizens
can change the world. Indeed, it
is the only thing that ever has.”
THIS March marks Harmony Day’s 15th
anniversary, an opportunity to look into our
future, a future shared by all communities re-
gardless of race or ethnicity.
As a diverse and varied community, it is
important we work towards supporting young
people in education.
Education rates are increasing overall,
however there still remains a significant gap.
Disadvantaged and isolated young people,
who make up 40 per cent of all unemployment
in Australia, as well as 42 per cent of the overall
homelessness population, most heavily experi-
ence this gap.
If we want to work towards improving social
harmony, and opportunities for our young
people the first step is through giving them the
tools they need to succeed – a proper education.
Youth Off The Streets runs an annual Na-
tional Scholarship Program, aimed at assisting
young people to achieve their greatest potential
and to break the cycle of poverty, disadvantage
Applications for the program close on April
3, however the work required in building a
better future for our young people, does not.
On Harmony Day, we celebrate the diversity
and strengths of Australia’s many cultures,
coming together to share our histories.
We are a multicultural, inclusive society and
we owe it to the young people to come together
for a common good.
Let’s help our young people improve educa-
tional achievement and social cohesion in 2015.
Father Chris Riley, Youth Off the
Streets founder and chief executive
New jetty needed
IN response to Jan Duffield and to others
who object to the proposed restriction to the
use of the local jetty, I would like to present
an alternative perspective.
Waikerie has long been the poor cousin
with this type of infrastructure, with our
only jetty constructed with voluntary labour
many years ago.
If Waikerie had modern floating pontoons
for launching/mooring like Loxton and other
Riverland towns, I doubt anyone would
object to the restricted use of our old jetty.
A new town wharf was a key feature in
the 2007 Waikerie Riverfront Development
Rather than stifle a promising tourism
outfit, we need a well placed modern jetty,
which would be more user friendly for boat-
ies and the general public.
David A. Jones, Waikerie
AUSTRALIAN aboriginals (and the South
African bushman) are acknowledged as the
best ‘trackers’ in the world. Their skills still
exist in our remote Aboriginal settlements.
So ask yourself, why aren’t they being
utilised throughout the country – both in
solving crime and tracking and finding lost
In the 1950s and 60s, Renmark police had
one of the best crime solving records in the
country with the team of Sergeant Max Jones
and the famous Aboriginal tracker, Jimmy
As well as others, including Albert
Anunga, the tracker involved in the capture
of the Pine Valley Station murderer. There
were few unsolved crimes in the Riverland
during that time, compared to now, when the
public are encouraged to phone a bank.
I have spoken to a number of serving and
retired policeman from constables to senior
officers, about this matter. Some of them give
reasons why they think Aboriginal trackers
are not generally part of the system. Others,
particularly country-born members, pri-
vately agree that South Australia Police are
worse off for not utilising this world’s best
It seems that like so many other areas of
society, it is the ‘bureaucracy’ who cannot see
the common sense of these situations.
And everyone suffers accordingly. If track-
ers had been used in the Lindy Chamberlain
case, perhaps that whole drama could have
been averted without lives spoilt, and if a
tracker had been used on the job first thing,
the Falconio case may have been quickly
The same goes for the numerous other
cases and particularly those concerning
Then there’s the other side of the coin. If
Aboriginal trackers were attached to vari-
ous regional police stations, there would be
a number of positives. Like footballers and
other Aboriginal sports people, they would be
excellent role models for their people. It could
also assist police in day to day dealings with
You only have to see a good tracker in
action to be convinced of this.
I have seen them on a number of occa-
sions, as have various outback policemen,
including Danny McGurgan who is attached
to Waikerie police.
He spent many years stationed in South
Australia’s Pitjantjatjara lands, and has
many stories relating to the tracking abilities
of these people. If anyone needs convincing,
they should read Tracks by Max Jones.
But having said all this, it will probably
Not because the expertise doesn’t still
exist, and can’t be passed on to the next gen-
eration, despite the competing activities and
distractions of this high technology age.
The main obstacle will be the ever increas-
ing rules and regulations imposed on our
long-suffering society, with the excesses of
occupational health and safety leading the
The only way these unique and remark-
able skills could be utilised today, would be
for trackers to operate outside the ‘system’
in conjunction with sympathetic police
officers with suitable Aboriginal and bush
Then it might work. But don’t hold your
Australia is supposed to be the ‘smart
country’, and if we truly were this wonder-
ful expertise would be ongoing, instead of
disappearing into the mirage, as part of our
Rex Ellis’outback books are available
online at www.safarico.com.au or by phoning
March 12, 1970
Master pair winners
final of the
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