In attendance were:
Allan Hennessy; Ben McGee; Bill Breeze; Bill Davey; Brian Travis; Carl Viglianti; Col Jones; Dave Coutts; Dean Veverka; Dennis Grant; Gary Beaton; George Woloszuk; Greg Martyn;
Ian McDonald; Jim Simpson; John Eades; Kevin O’Brien; Lex Vipond; Mal Carson; Neil Yakalis; Neville Hainke; Orm Butler; Peter Bull; Robert Brand; Robert Lewis; Robin Tuckfield;
Ross Smith; Tom Barker
Those present were reminded of those who had passed away over the past 12 months and the contributions that they may have had on our lives during and after our years in OTC.
The conversations started immediately people arrived to find out who was who (as some of us have aged more than others). For example: Neville Hainke and Dean Veverka still have their boyish good looks and age does not seem to have harmed them at all. Although Dean told us that he had some crippling back pain while on a working trip to SE Asia on his way to a conference in Europe that necessitated a quick trip home for urgent surgery but he is much better now. Bill Davey and Ray Pow too do not seem to have aged much at least to the point that I was easily able to recognize them.
Those present were happy to see that Tom Barker and Allan Hennessy were not hampered by mobility or health issues and were able to join the social gathering. They both appeared to be well and in good spirits. Their attendance and contribution to the collective memories and stories was much appreciated by all in attendance.
Stories were told and memories relived as those in attendance recalled their experiences in their OTC years. Much laughter ensued as someone related a particularly interesting or controversial event that had happened OR when someone recalled a ‘remember when (person) did (what)” story that was considered memorable either due to its level of excellence or its larrikinism.
Unfortunately the venue could have been better. We had booked 3 tables of 10 in the Red Room on Level 1 but unfortunately the other booking in the Red Room did not want to share and we were moved at the last minute to the Bistro area which was a bit loud and distracting. Peter Bull extended his apology on behalf of the Committee to those in attendance and promised to do better next year. The Function Manager of Club York and the Bistro Manager also apologized but the situation was apparently unavoidable due to the sensitivity of some of the topics being discussed in the Red Room by the other group which had larger numbers than the OTVA. Having said that, the food was very good as was the service by the wait staff. The general noise of our conversations and occasional raucous laughter may have caused some other patrons to move giving us more room in which to spread out which was welcomed by the majority.
All those in attendance appeared to thoroughly enjoying the event and conversation with many still being there talking well after 3:30pm.
Thanks to Robin Tuckfield who provided name tags to facilitate in those awkward moments when you cannot recall a person’s name.
Thanks to Orm Butler and John Eades for taking the below photos: