• Bob Costello

Paddy Bugden Memorial Celebratation This Weekend!

Paddy Bugden Memorial

The unveiling of the Paddy Bugden VC memorial in 1997 celebrated the 25th anniversary of Alstonville Rotary, and commemorated the centenary of Paddy’s birth and the 80th anniversary of his death during the WW1 battle of Polygon Wood. We are now very pleased to support Alstonville RSL sub-branch in its meticulous planning and staging of the commemoration of the centenary of Paddy’s death and his award of the VC, under the leadership of President Mark Quilligan.

Since unveiling of the monument 20 years ago, Alstonville Rotary has maintained oversight of its upkeep in partnership with the Ballina Shire Council. During the past few weeks members of Alstonville RSL sub-branch have joined with Council and Alstonville Rotary to carry out repairs and maintenance of the memorial in readiness for the centenary commemoration. As a consequence, the monument which is the focal point of this event is looking splendid.

The commemoration will commence at the Paddy Bugden VC memorial at 1030 and an outline of the program is as follows:

1. 1030 - Move to Bugden Memorial from RSL Hall

Piper Graeme Broadhead (ex 3RAR).

2. 1040-1045 - Welcome and Introduction – RSL President

Guard take post.

3. 1045-1100 - Blessing

Father Geoff Bugden.

4. 1105-1115 - Family Representative

Mr Bernie Knapp.

5. 1115-1125 - Current VC Representative

Mr Doug Baird (Father of CPL Cameron Baird VC MG).

6. 1125-1130 - Rotary Representative.

Mr John Barnes.

7. 1130 - Flypast

Subject to weather.

8. 1130-1145 - History of Paddy Bugden and Alstonville connection – President RSL

Mr Mark Quilligan.

9. 1145- 1200 - Last Post/Silence/Ode/Reveille.

10. 1200-1205 - Wreath Laying/Guard Dismount.

11. 1205 - Move to Federal Hotel for Community BBQ

Members of Paddy’s extended family will be present, and the father of CPL Cameron Baird VC MG will address the gathering. Weather permitting there will also be an RAAF flypast. The subsequent community BBQ at the Federal Hotel also promises to be another highlight.

During the day, members of the public will be able to purchase the third edition of So I fear Nothing at the memorial, RSL sub-branch and at the Federal Hotel.

Image of book 'So I Fear Nothing' The Story of Paddy Bugden

This book can also be purchased by contacting John Barnes on 0408662878. The cost is $25 and all proceeds to the veteran community.

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