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Remembrance Day 2019: Gratitude and Reflection

Remembrance Day is an important day for Defence members past and present, and their families. It’s a significant day for us here at Churchill Education too with many graduates and staff members who are past or presently serving members. For Remembrance Day 2019 we wanted to share the insight of our Recognition of Prior Learning Assessor – Nick Wray, who spent 47 years in the military.


Listen to Nick’s Interview

Read Interview Transcript

Nick’s military life began in 1970 when he joined the Citizens Military Forces (the forerunner of the Australian Army Reserves). In 1972 his national service number came up for the Vietnam War, however Nick elected to continue to serve in the CMF. In 1978, Nick completed officer training and was posted to the Royal Australian Artillery, in which he continued to serve whilst also pursuing his civilian career.

His extensive career included nine years of full-time service, which encompassed postings as an officer in command, deployment with the Australian Army Training Team (Iraq) followed by five years full time service as an instructor on the Australian Regular Army Captains Course at the Officer Instructor Wing at the Land Warfare Centre, Canungra.

On transfer back to the Army Reserve (ARES), Nick was posted to Queensland University Regiment as an instructor on the ARES Captains and Majors Courses until retirement in December 2017.

Having retired from Army service, Nick states of his current role as the Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Assessor at Churchill Education:

“I’m pleased that I can continue to help defence members progress and change their lives through the work we do at Churchill Education.”

We agree. It is great to have someone with so much personal insight translating defence service into qualifications that the civilian world understands and values.

Here is what Remembrance Day means for Nick…

1. Gratitude

“I am grateful for my own time in the military, and to those who served before me. I am grateful for those that gave their life in conflicts that Australia has been involved in, and also for those who served a support role either at home or abroad to the people who eventually gave their life.”

2. Commitment

“I think about commitment on Remembrance Day. Each and every person that serves has signed a contract for the value of up to and including their life to serve their country.”

3.Mateship

“You’ve got to be part of a very large team in defence, and that brings me back to remembering those I’ve had the pleasure and honour to serve with. Some of those people are no longer with us. But they have all impacted my life and ultimately shaped my thinking. I think of those people on Remembrance Day.”

4. Code of Ethics

“Defence training instils a code of ethics that you can live your life by. It includes things like comradeship, honesty, integrity, acceptance, and respect.

It’s something I have carried through my entire life. Today I remember and am grateful for these qualities.”

Gratitude, commitment, mateship and a code of ethics are the stuff that Australia has been built on, and today of all days we can remember the contribution our defence members have made to instilling these qualities into Australia as a culture.

For many of us Remembrance Day means attending a dawn service, buying a red poppy, a minute of silence. But to understand the deeper meaning of this day, from the perspective of someone with almost five decades of first-hand experience is special.

Nick is quick to assure us that this public support is valued by defence members and the families of those lost in the line of duty.

To Nick and all present and past defence members, we say thank you for your service.    

 

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