4. From 6TTU to Vietnam – An APC for Australia
Posted on: Mon 16 May 2022
Episode 4. In this episode we hear from RAAC Veterans Ian “Icky’ Smith, Peter McDonald and John McQueen, and RAASC Veterans Glen Hutley, Fred ‘Blue’ Hickey, David Childs, about work and living conditions in and around Innisfail and interaction with the locals. Kathy Kelly (nee Powers) recalls parties thrown at the “Powers’ Place. We hear how the funds raised from their self-made ‘booze-up’ The Coconut Club enabled the unit to buy an old vehicle which the RAEME chaps did up and personnel could put in an application to borrow it.
The series is MC’d by RAAC Veteran Craig Haydock.
Throughout this 8 part series, produced via a Saluting Their Service Major Commemorative Grant, Army Veterans recount memories of heading up to Far North Queensland and the little town of Innisfail in the mid 1960s to participate in tropical trials on wheeled and tracked vehicles and an Armoured Personnel Carrier for Australia to take to Vietnam. Some travelled by train, some flew or drove their own vehicles and others were part of a large convoy that left Puckapunyal in 1964.
Image: Innisfail 1964. Photo by Doug McMillan. Provided by Lyn McMillan and used with permission