22 May 2018
Many Hero’s Wishes have been fulfilled over the last few months.
Betty’s Wish was to see Richmond play at the MCG. Betty is a resident at Vasey RSL Care Brighton and a lifelong Tigers fan. She is 94 years old and served in PNG in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force in World War II.
We had numerous offers of help for this wish – thank you to everyone who contacted us. We are very grateful to Jo & Joe Zumbo who ensured that Betty, her granddaughter and grandson enjoyed a wonderful day out, in the Members area at the MCG, complete with lunch and pre-game entertainment.
“It was a wonderful day and I was able to take my grandson (7 years old) who said it was the best day of his life. Thank you everyone who was responsible – I appreciated it very much.”
(And the right team won.)
Gordon is a resident at Vasey RSL Care Frankston South and was a very keen fisherman in his younger days, making his own boats and fishing the rivers of Gippsland.
Peg’s Wish was for a reunion with the other ladies who signed up in 1941 for the Women’s Australian Auxiliary Air Force – WAAAF. These 26 women were the first females to join the armed forces and they paved the way for all those who have followed.
Only 4 are still around, and unfortunately one, Bonnay, was unable to come. It was lovely to see the three ladies together again, at a lunch at Vasey RSL Care Brighton East, where Peg lives, 77 years after they signed up together.
We were also delighted to have members of Peg and Margaret’s families, and two currently serving RAAF members from HMAS Cerberus.
Peg is pictured (centre) flanked by Lorna (far left) and Margaret (far right), with Flight Lieutenant Sue Stone (second from right) and Sergeant Casey Dor’e.
“To see my old friends again was just what I wished for but to have such a great party… and the wonderful bonus of two lovely young women from the present day RAAF – it was all so perfect, like a dream.”
Kevin’s Wish was for personalised number plates. Kevin is a Vietnam Veteran and a resident at our Geelong ILUs, and he wished for number plates with his army division number.
These were presented to him at a morning tea in the recently renovated community hall at the Geelong ILUs, by CEO, Janna Voloshin. Kevin was a career soldier and it was very moving to hear about his tours of duty and the influence his service has had on his life.
Around 20 ILU residents came along for the event, bringing plenty of morning tea with them to share.
Reg’s Wish: Reg (seated) and his brother Peter (centre) wished to take part in an ANZAC Day service, and then visit the Springvale Botanical Cemetery to lay wreaths on their mother’s and father’s graves.
We are very grateful to the staff at the Cemetery and the War Graves Commission who assisted us to fulfill this wish. Reg & Peter were joined by members of their family for the day, which finished with afternoon tea, provided by the Springvale Botanical Cemetery.
We are also very grateful to our volunteer Terry for kindly driving the group there and back on the Bundoora bus.
Janna Voloshin, CEO: “The goal of this program is to fulfill the wishes and dreams of our veterans and war widows, and send them a message that we understand the lifelong impact that service has had on their lives.
“I have been lucky enough to be present for some of these wishes and this has allowed me to see for myself how much it means to the residents, and their families, that they are able to have their wishes fulfilled.
“And it is thanks to the generosity of donors that we have been able to fulfill these wishes. Thank you to all who have helped us with donations and support.
“Please consider supporting this program as it continues to enable our veterans and war widows to fulfill their dreams.”