Ex-serviceman recognised with plaque

Alf Scott is finally able to see a plaque commemorating his mate and ex-serviceman Jack Kiley’s grave.
Alf Scott is finally able to see a plaque commemorating his mate and ex-serviceman Jack Kiley’s grave.

THE Rotary Club of Moree on Gwydir and a local businessman have made donations for a plaque to be placed on an ex-serviceman’s grave.

Alf Scott has been working for years to have the man, Jack Kiley, recognised.

“Like me, Rotary believes no ex-soldier should be in an unmarked resting place,” Mr Scott said.

“For nine years attempts have been made to have a plaque put on his grave.

“Because of special circumstances going through the Department of Veterans Affairs became uncertain and it was through my visit with our Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton, I was finally able to find a solution to the problem with Rotary,” Mr Scott said.

He said Jack Kiley was a well-known identity in Moree.

Jack worked for Telstra and lived in units above Assef’s where he often visited, and could be found in shorts come summer and winter, much to the amusement of his fashion conscious friends.

When Jack passed away a family friend paid for his funeral, avoiding the pauper’s grave however, there were no provisions for a plaque.

Jack joined the Army at 14 years of age. He served 1311 days with 710 of those days in New Guinea between 1942 and 1946.

He was discharged from the 2/31st Battalion Infantry in which he served as a Bren Gunner.

Jack was five foot, four inches – the Bren Gun is three feet, six inches tall.

In Moree Jack was known as a fine cricket player.

He never knocked back anyone when asked for a donation and would help anyone, according to Mr Scott.

“Only those close to him know of his generous nature,” he said.

Mr Scott said anyone who would like to make a donation could do so to the Rotary Club of Moree on Gwydir via Pitman and Deakin. 

“Any funds left over will go towards helping another wonderful cause,” he said.

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