Now & Then

Sunday, 10 June 2012 11:38:31 


This reunion was possible because one person, Sandra Linklater decided it would be a challenge to try and get as many ex-students to get together from 1959-1963. We all know how hard that was going to be. She wrote to all the newspapers from around the country, radio stations and women’s magazines. She did them often 2-3 times to get them to take notice.

I became involved after seeing it in a Sydney Sunday paper and contacted her and offered to give her a hand, as the response at that time was very poor. I decided to go through the White Pages on the Internet and wrote to some 55 people and I rang some that I thought I had found.

In the beginning, the present school was more involved with our night in conjunction with the 40th anniversary. Shortly after though they decided to let us do it all. Not daunted by that Sandra plodded on. She spent hours answering mail, sending tickets out, returning call on her answering service. We went from a few coming from the original 59-63 group and some from the years up to 69 to around 170 who ended up attending the night.

Ex-teachers were harder to find as we are in the range of 53 years old the teachers are at the least 20 years onto that. Sadly many are no longer with us. Mr. Roach graced us on the night with his company and made up for the lack of numbers with his presence. He just had not changed. Thank you so much for coming. I did see Mrs. Carson, on the night, who was one of original Home Economics teachers there for while. How come they look so good?
I don’t think anyone noticed the music in the background and not enough people even had time to eat.
The chatter and camaraderie amongst us all was fantastic. I believe we were Special. Those early days when we started school were novel to say the least. The only 3 R’s then, were Rain, Rubble, Riot, (a newspaper reporter asked Mr. Johnston about the riot in the school?) when the 715 ascended onto the ground that were to be our homes for 3 –5 years. Cranes, concrete, pneumatic drills, mud and old cow bell for a school horn, which had to be run around the entire school with a student, so we knew when the period ended. There were no school textbooks for sometime. Boy they would never get away with that today.

With two schools on the premises in 1959 and the fact we were the first into the school, that made us very unique. The bond was quite evident on the night. There was plenty of food and people trying to recognise others recalling those days, catching up on what we had been doing in our lives. Many have endured hardships, grief, broken marriages. Hopefully, we had some good times along the way, and our careers, a family of our own, then, it had been worthwhile night. We had indeed survived the Age of Aquarius and we come to celebrate our survival.

When Ron Graham stepped up on the stage and it was though time stood still and we listened to his words like he was still our School Captain. Ron remained school captain from beginning 1959-1963. He still looked the same and he spoke with his natural charm and wit, I am so he was still the same Ron that we all remembered.

We hope you enjoyed the night. We have enclosed the scanned photographs of the night and a list of those who attended and some that could not come but wished to be remembered. We know we had someone representing every state but the Northern Territory there on the night and one from NZ.

June 2008: I have seen Mr Roach (now decease)and Mrs Carson in Hurstville.