WE can now announce the recipient of the third Australia Day Achievement Medallion for 2020.
Kathy Stewart – Secretary/Treasurer of the N Class Destroyer Association and member of the City of Cockburn RSL Sub-Branch – has been announced as the third superstar of the veteran community to be officially honoured with an award.
Kathy’s achievement was not announced at January’s Australia Day and Cadet of the Year Awards night, due to a special request from Association Patrons that it be presented at the annual N Class Reunion Dinner in Augusta on 6 February.
But due to the devastating fires, floods and lockdown, the event was postponed until 13 March – meaning the secrecy had to maintained a further five weeks. Congratulations to all involved, because Kathy knew nothing about the award until it was presented.
Kathy is seen here being presented with the award by State President of RSLWA, Peter Aspinall AM, along with N Class Patrons Jim Challis and Phil Orchard.
Kathy’s citation read: “A member of the N Class Destroyers Association since 2003, she has been the Secretary and Treasurer since 2010, and has been responsible for the day-to-day administration of the Association.
“These responsibilities include the preparation and execution of the annual commemorative service held in Augusta in February each year. This event requires the organisation of transport, accommodation, a reunion dinner and a commemorative service within the town of Augusta.
“Attendees include veteran ‘N’ Class sailors from Western Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, relatives of those who served, State ministers, key stakeholders of veteran organisations and the community of Augusta.
“This event is strongly supported by the Augusta community, including local schools and community leaders, all of which provide warm and generous help to Kathy as she coordinates the event.
“Kathy has, at her own expense, ensured notices appear in the appropriate media publications advertising the commemorative event, and also death and funeral notices of Association members.
“Throughout her years of service, she has visited the many widows and widowers of the Association to ensure their wellbeing. These visits are undertaken to homes and hospital, and the tyranny of distance are no concern to Kathy, who lives in Wooroloo.
“Furthermore, her passion and enthusiasm for the Association ensures the membership numbers are maintained by the recruiting of family members. The outcome being that the memory of the ‘N’ Class Destroyer sailor lives on.
“While she regularly receives verbal praise for her role, in May 2018, Kathy was awarded a Commanding Officers’ Commendation from Captain Brian Delamont, Commanding Officer, HMAS Stirling.
“Through RSLWA, for her exceptional and selfless service in support of the Association, its members and their families, Kathy is awarded the National Australia Day Council’s Achievement Medallion.”