LEST WE FORGET: Vietnam Veteran Ron Still (left) after the service which remembered those who fought in the Battle of Coral and Balmoral in 1968.
LEST WE FORGET: Vietnam Veteran Ron Still (left) after the service which remembered those who fought in the Battle of Coral and Balmoral in 1968. Alistair Brightman

Veteran reminisces on the Battle of Coral-Balmoral

IN LESS than 12 hours of arriving at the Battle of Coral-Balmoral in 1968, Ron Still had one of his soldiers killed and another two severely injured.

It's a memory still clear in his mind.

Mr Still joined dozens of others at Freedom Park yesterday to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the battle of Coral-Balmoral.

After the battle was "overlooked" for many years, the service was even more significant. Mr Still was the only local veteran of the battle who attended the service. A further two were unable to attend.

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A Squadron Sergeant Major of 104 Signal Squadron at the 1st Australian Task Force headquarters, Mr Still arrived in Balmoral before he served in Coral.

"I didn't arrive in Coral until the morning of the 14th or 15th (of June) and the day I arrived, I was allocating areas for my soldiers to dig in," he said.

"Night fell and we didn't get a chance to finish digging the trenches.

"That night we got hit tremendously and the Vietnamese were at the front and it was one hell of a night."

The next day, the soldiers continued to dig their trenches.

Mr Still said he was moved by the service which recognised those who fought.

"I've got a lot of that admiration for the young fellas," he said.

"These days bring back lots of memories."



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