Oops – the local media’s coverage of Macarthur and South West Sydney residents who received gongs in this year’s Queen’s Birthday honours left out one recipient.
Anita West, a Campbelltown resident, was awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for services to veterans and their families.
The reason all of the media, including the South West Voice in Macarthur, missed her name was because on the honours list the citation appeared minus her suburb.
It was like this:
Mrs Mabel Anita West, NSW
For service to veterans and their families.
Luckily, Yvonne Stapleton the secretary of the Ingleburn Legacy Widows Club, made amends by sending out a media releases this morning to all local news outlets.
“Anita has made a remarkable voluntary contribution and commitment to community and service and thoroughly deserves this national recognition,’’ writes Mrs Stapleton.
“Anita has been an outstanding member of the Ingleburn Legacy Widows Club since 1978.
“She has held the executive positions of president, secretary, treasurer, as well as social secretary, continuously at various times during her entire 41 years of membership.
“Anita was never just a ‘member.’ She has always stepped forward and made a remarkable contribution to supporting the widows and children of service members who have died during war, or as a result of their service.
“In addition to the Ingleburn Legacy Widows Club magnificent voluntary commitment, she has been a member of Torchbearers, the fundraising arm of Legacy, since 1982.
“This included 12 years on the executive board of Torchbearers, NSW. She has worked to oversee and tirelessly raise funds to assist the organisation in their duty of care to widows and children.
“Anita also coordinated the Legacy Badge Day in the local area for six years.
“Before coming to Australia, Anita West served in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (UK) from 1939 – 1946 as a teleprinter operator, signals and attained the rank of sergeant, followed by three years in the WAAF Reserve to 1949.
“She has been a committed member of the Ingleburn RSL Sub Branch for 25 years, since women were allowed to join a RSL Sub Branch. In addition, Anita was also the Treasurer of the Royal Air Force (RAF) Association, Campbelltown Group, NSW for six years.
“Anita joined the St John Ambulance, Guildford, NSW Division as a member in 1961. Her 56 years of voluntary service involved being a uniformed first aider. In later years she held the position of treasurer of the Retired Members Group.
“She has given her time, her leadership and organisational skills and energy generously and without hesitation. Her dedication and commitment to service and the needs of others in both peacetime and in time of war has been exemplary.
“We are very proud of her!’’
As we are now, too, Yvonne and thank you for letting us know about the wonderful person that is Anita West.