Benalla resident Bill Gregory received an Order of Australia Medal on Monday for his service to the community.MONIQUE FREER June 11, 2014 3:23am
Benalla resident Bill Gregory has received one of Australia’s highest honours in recognition of his seven decades of service to the community.
Mr Gregory was awarded a Queen’s Birthday Order of Australia Medal on Monday, and said he was surprised to receive the honour.
‘‘At my age I thought there wasn’t much time for anyone to be able to nominate me to give me the surprise I had,’’ he said.
His contribution to the Benalla community spanned many groups and interests. He held offices at Benalla Probus Club and Benalla RSL sub-branch, and is a life member of the Benalla Fire Brigade.
The 92-year-old was born in Murtoa in the Wimmera district and moved to Devenish with his family at the age of 17.
In July 1939 he moved to Benalla to begin an electrical apprenticeship and has lived in the rural city ever since.
‘‘My first involvement with the community was as a committee member and later as president for 13 years for Benalla 31 state school committee,’’ he said.
His five daughters, Marilyn, Pam, Glennis, Rhonda and Roslyn, all went to the Benalla primary school.
‘‘That was the normal thing in those days, for parents to be involved,’’ he said.
‘‘In those days we were endeavouring all the time to get better benefits to the school which were hard to get, like electrical heating or overhead fans.
‘‘The money was just never available.’’
Mr Gregory spent 46 years working as an electrician and was the president of the North East Electrical Contractors Association.
He was also a keen bowler and was involved with the United Friendlies Society hard court tennis and cricket clubs.
‘‘I feel that I’ve satisfied my ambitions,’’ he said.
Although he never served overseas, Mr Gregory also had four-and-a-half years’ service in the army and left in 1946 to marry his wife of 68 years, Betty.
‘‘Without my wife I wouldn’t have been able to achieve any of this,’’ he said.
‘‘I’ve had a lot of tributes over the years for what I’ve done but it’s always been with the help of my wife.’’
Coca-Cola Amatil has confirmed it will be pressing on with its $100 million redevelopment of SPC Ardmona.
Beautiful weather greeted Tungamah residents for the 18th running of the Tungamah Lions Ten Thousand on Sunday.
When Keith and Marion Grumley and their growing family moved to Tatura on January 18, 1968, little did they know that it would be the start of a long and lasting connection to the town.
A snake was spotted this afternoon.
Rochester Rotary Club has celebrated its 50th birthday in style.
Sorting future of Campaspe pools
A theatre production with a difference is coming to Seymour.
Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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