Group says national service a win for all

The National Servicemen's Association marches at the Anzac Day parade in Stanthorpe this year.
The National Servicemen's Association marches at the Anzac Day parade in Stanthorpe this year. Liana Turner

FOR some, the notion of compulsory time with the armed forces is one of great contention.

But for Stanthorpe man Des Fossey and many of his peers, it was something to be proud of and something which enriched society.

Mr Fossey is the current secretary/treasurer and former president of the National Servicemen's Association of Australia Stanthorpe Branch.

The branch was formed just 17 years ago, a mere blip compared to some organisations. Mr Fossey said it was important to recognise and honour the value of national service.

He encouraged anyone who'd undertaken national service and wasn't yet involved with the group to sign up.

"We're currently holding about 40 members that's with wives supporting us and everything,” Mr Fossey said.

The Menzies government introduced the National Service Act in 1951 amid an intensifying Cold War in Europe, communist success around South-East Asia and the beginning of the Korean War. This saw men turning 18 on or after November 1, 1950, conscripted for training for 176 days.

Stanthorpe National Servicemen's Association secretary and treasurer Des Fossey.
Stanthorpe National Servicemen's Association secretary and treasurer Des Fossey. Liana Turner

National Servicemen trainees remained on reserve for five years after their initial call-up. The first men were called up on April 12, 1951.

More than 500,000 men registered and 227,000 were trained from 52 intakes between 1951 and 1959.

"When we turned 18, we had to register, we had no choice,” Mr Fossey said.

They did, however, get the opportunity to elect their preference, and Mr Fossey chose the Army when he registered in Wacol in 1955.

"The army got the biggest majority and they had three months full time duty plus two years back in their local area,” he said.

While his service didn't take him away from Australian shores, Mr Fossey was on standby for the Korean War and said it was a great opportunity to serve the country.

"I reckon it was great,” he said.

"It was the greatest time I ever had in my life.

"I reckon they should keep it going and every National Serviceman you talk to, they think the same.”

Mr Fossey said the discipline they had to embrace as part of their service was something much of society could benefit from today.

"One big thing we learned was discipline,” he said.

But he said the mateship he found during his time with the Army was unsurpassed.

"The camaraderie was unreal,” Mr Fossey said.

He still keeps in touch with some of his mates from this time, with one as far away as Townsville and another having found a lifelong career in the Australian Defence Force.

Stanthorpe Border Post

Topics:  nationall servicemen's association stanthorpe national service national servicemen association

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Forum 'a good start' for tourism industry

BIG IDEAS: John and Megan Sharpe and Taya and Stephen Mickalski after the tourism forum.

Some embraced this forum, while others left before it was over

Long legacy honoured as sale kicks off

Gleesons Mercery has changed a lot over the years but is still going strong.

Gleesons is a name that's been part of Stanthorpe since the 1800s

Brrrr! Bitterly cold weather on the way for SEQ

Frost is expected in some places on Friday morning and on the weekend.

Stanthorpe could drop to minus 3 this weekend

Local Partners

Littleproud to boost presence in Rose City

Maranoa MP to open third electoral office in Warwick this month

Working class? Man, Gympie's got the show for you

Jimmy Barnes

Aussie rock icons coming to Gympie for 150th celebrations.

Tables turn as rescue crew takes on gruelling mountain

EPIC CHALLENGE: Hundreds of runners will tackle the 4.2km run from the heart of Pomona to the top of Mt Cooroora and back on Sunday.

They are usually the people coming to the rescue of adventurers

VIDEO: Girls can feel safe at Splendour

Punters at Splendour in the Grass 2016 at Byron Bay.

High visibility police will be among the crowd at all times

Holy schnit: This steak's the size of a small child

It's not every day you get served a steak as big as a baby for lunch, unless you're eating at the Pinnacle Pub.

OJ loses cool as he begs to go free

Simpson was convicted in 2008 of enlisting some men he barely knew, including two who had guns, to retrieve from two sports collectables sellers some items that Simpson said were stolen from him a decade earlier.

Tension at the parole hearing didn't stop OJ going free

Lead singer of Linkin Park, Chester Bennington, dies age 41

Coroner spokesman Brian Elias says they are investigating Bennington's death as an apparent suicide but no additional details are available.

Chester Bennington's body was found in LA at 9am local time.

Tamara's bittersweet MasterChef exit (take two)

Mackay's Tamara Graffen has already gained valuable work experience since her elimination from MasterChef.

MACKAY cook's heartwarming send-off from finals week.

Why Sleeping Duck turned down a $500,000 offer on Shark Tank

Sleeping Duck founders Selvam Sinnappan, left, and Winston Wijeyeratne.Source:Supplied

Melbourne university mates turn down hug Shark Tank ffer

Lisa Wilkinson portrait wins Packer Room Prize

A portrait of Lisa Wilkinson by artist Peter Smeeth has taken out this year's Packer Room Prize.

"The winning of this award is 99 per cent due to Lisa."

Ninja Warrior: What it takes to win it

Isaac Caldiero assesses Mount Midoriyama during Season 7 of American Ninja Warrior.Source:Supplied

Only six people have managed to successfully complete the course

Alex beach or bluff at your front door

ALEX LIVING: 9/252 Alexandra Pde, Alexandra Headland.

Beachfront unit among the picks of this week's auction line-up

Open for inspection homes 20 - 26 July

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection.

Sunshine Coast shopping centre on the market

Coles-anchored centre in high-growth area listed for sale

Island resort living from just $250 a week

Couran Cove on Stradbroke Island is undergoing a makeover. Photo: Steve Holland

Resort offering permanent rentals at almost half normal rental price

Start-up business blooms in riverside outlet

Sunflower Florist opens new premises at Mooloolaba for local wares

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!