Benalla RSL - standing up to serve the community
Posted November 25, 2015
CATHY McGOWAN (Indi) (13:57): I would like to welcome to parliament today members of the Benalla subbranch of the RSL. Doug Williams is the Benalla rep on the Indi Centenary of Anzac Day committee. He accepted my invitation to come to parliament today to join me for lunch before heading off to visit the War Memorial. There are 165 members of the Benalla RSL, covering all three services. During their time, they have made a huge contribution to this nation, both as members of the ADF and later in their work as volunteers. They tell me that they are one of the major providers of community services in Benalla.
Benalla played a major role in the Second World War, training over 5,000 pilots at the Benalla Airport, which is now hosting some amazing gliding championships, with the international gliding championships taking place in 2017. There are two famous children of Benalla that I would like to bring to the attention of the House: Weary Dunlop, who was a POW on the Thai-Burma railway, and Heck Wella, who was a naval captain and after whom a submarine was named.
Thanks to all those involved in the trip today. I know it is a huge effort. So thank you to Jeff Lewis and his wife, Margaret, and to Delano Dube, social organiser. I would also like to acknowledge two affiliate members, who, although they were not with us today, play a big role in the success of the club: Diane Green, secretary; and Christie Young, treasurer. To all the members of the RSL in Indi, thank you for your work.