Vol 47

The Magazine by and for Serving and Ex-RAAF People,

and others.

Page 6

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Out in the Shed with Ted.


Ted McEvoy.




This page is brought to you compliments of the Kedron Wavell Services Club, Brisbane’s superior Club.







The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson, announced new pension and income support payment rates for some 290,000 veterans, their partners, war widows and widowers across Australia would apply from 20 September.


The first full pension payments at the new rates will be on 02 October 2014.


The table below highlights the key changes to fortnightly rates. The next review is scheduled for the 20 March 2014.




Cheap Air-fares.


Did you know that you can search for flights by cost, rather than destination? If you’re working to a budget, why not discover how you can find the cheapest flights to anywhere in the world?


Some people have particular destinations in mind when they start planning a holiday. But for others, it can be a real adventure to explore somewhere new and unexpected. If you are working on a tight budget, a little flexibility can go a long way. Being prepared to travel during off-peak times, or take flights during the working week can significantly reduce the cost of your flights. Similarly, if you are flexible with your destination, you can search for the lowest cost airfares to anywhere in the world, letting you see your options and work to a budget, rather than a location.


So how does it work?


The Skyscanner website has a couple of nifty hidden features which will allow you to perform this search. When you get to the Skyscanner homepage, there is a box for you to search for flights. Put your nearest airport into the ‘From’ field, but instead of typing a destination into the ‘To’ field, type the word ‘Everywhere’.


Next, when choosing departure dates, click the arrows to arrive on a month, and then look below the calendar. Select the option ‘Whole month’. There is also an option for ‘Whole year’, but the further into the future you search the less likely you are to pick up on a flight sale. Select the number of passengers and then click ‘Search’. What you end up with is a list of countries, and the cheapest possible return tickets to those destinations. For example, my search showed that I could fly from Melbourne to New Zealand return for $250, to Singapore for $267 or to the USA for $786.


These prices will only be available on limited days, but they are almost half the price of standard flights and this can be a great way to go somewhere unexpected at a very low cost.



Helium Sounds.


The speed of sound in helium is almost 3 times faster than that in air which is why you sound funny when you breathe helium. The resonance changes because the speed of sound changes. Our vocal cords create sound by vibrating in the air we exhale, making the air molecules vibrate, too. The speed at which the vocal cords vibrate determines the pitch of the sound. Two things determine the speed of vocal cord vibrations: how tightly they are stretched and what type of gas in which they are vibrating.


The difference with helium is its density, Vocal cords vibrate faster in gasses, such as helium, that are less dense than air. When vocal cords vibrate faster, the pitch of the sound goes up. Your vocal chords don't change.  Listen HERE.



Two Tasmanians were sitting around talking one afternoon over a cold Boags. After a while the first Tasmanian says to the second, "If I was to sneak over to your house and make love to your wife while you was off fishing, and she got pregnant and had a baby, would that make us related?” The second Tasmanian crooked his head sideways for a minute, scratched his head, and squinted his eyes, thinking real hard about the question. Finally, he says, "Well, I don't know about related, but I reckon it’d make us even."



VEA Amendments.


Amendments to the Veterans' Entitlements Act 1986 and the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004, which impact on the VRB came into effect on 28 July 2014. The amendments were contained in the Veterans' Affairs Legislation Amendment (Mental Health and other Measures) Bill 2014. The changes will allow the VRB to make significant improvements to service and will enhance the operation of the VRB. The changes include the use of modern and effective alternative dispute resolution processes and improved case management powers, administrative and business procedures.


The general practice direction, ADR guidelines and a guide to understanding your decision, has been amended to reflect some of these changes. Two new practice directions regarding oral reasons and the composition of VRB panels have also been issued.


Please note that in respect of ADR, a trial using the new legislative framework for ADR will commence in NSW only, from 1 January 2015. The VRB will continue to offer ADR as outlined in the ADR guidelines, available on the VRB website, until the trial commences and for all states other than NSW, after the trial commences.


Please click on the following links to view recent updates to the VRB website.








Pamela Murphy.

Audie Murphy's wife.

Dennis McCarthy,


Audie Murphy was only 46 years old when he died in a helicopter crash into the Virginia Mts in 1971. He was bothered all his life when he came back from the war and it really affected his life (PTSD).  Like a lot of his mates, he never got the medical help he should have received.


Not many young people would know Audie Murphy or how big a war hero he was. Two or three of the medals he earned would make most service men proud, but to have earned his decorations in battle is truly unbelievable.



List of Decorations for Audie Murphy.



His most famous movie was “To Hell and Back” You can see a preview of the movie below.



Murphy married actress Wanda Hendrix in January 1949, however they were divorced in April. After Audie’s death, Pam established her own distinctive 35 year career as a patient liaison at the Sepulveda Veterans Administration hospital, treating every veteran who visited the facility as if they were a VIP.


Any soldier or Marine who came into the hospital got the same special treatment from her.  She would walk the hallways with her clipboard in hand making sure her boys got to see the specialist they needed.  If they didn't watch out.  Her boys weren't Medal of Honor recipients or movie stars like Audie, but that didn't matter to Pam. They had served their Country. That was good enough for her. She never called a veteran by his first name. It was always "Mister." Respect came with the job.


"Nobody could cut through VA red tape faster than Mrs. Murphy," said veteran Stephen Sherman, speaking for thousands of veterans she befriended over the years. "Many times I watched her march a veteran who had been waiting more than an hour right into the doctor's office”.


She was even reprimanded a few times, but it didn't matter to Mrs. Murphy.   "Only her boys mattered. She was our angel."


Audie Murphy died broke in a plane crash in 1971, squandering millions of dollars on gambling, bad investments, and other women. "Even with the adultery and desertion at the end, he always remained my hero," Pam said. After Audie’s death, she went from a comfortable ranch-style home in Van Nuys where she raised two sons to a small apartment - taking a clerk's job at the nearby VA to support herself and start paying off her faded movie star husband's debts. At first, no-one knew who she was, soon, though, word spread through the VA (Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center - Richmond, VA) that the nice woman with the clipboard was Audie Murphy's widow. It was like saying General Patton had just walked in the front door. Men with tears in their eyes walked up to her and gave her a hug.


"Thank you," they said, over and over.


The first couple of years, it’s possible the hugs were more for Audie's memory as a war hero. The last 30 years, they were for Pam.


One year she was asked to be the focus of a Veteran's Day column for all the work she had done. Pam just shook her head no.  "Honor them, not me, “she said, pointing to a group of veterans down the hallway. "They're the ones who deserve it." The vets disagreed. Mrs. Murphy deserved the accolades, they said. Incredibly, in 2002, Pam's job was going to be eliminated in budget cuts. She was considered "excess staff."  "I don't think helping cut down on veterans' complaints and showing them the respect they deserve should be considered excess staff," she said.


Neither did the veterans. They went ballistic, holding a rally for her outside the VA gates. Pretty soon, word came down from the top of the VA. Pam Murphy was no longer considered "excess staff."


She remained working full time at the VA until 2007 when she was 87.


"The last time she was here was a couple of years ago for the conference we had for homeless veterans," said Becky James, coordinator of the VA's Veterans History Project. Pam wanted to see if there was anything she could do to help some more of her boys.


Pamela died peacefully at her home on the 8th April, 2010, she was 90 when she died. What a lady”.



A mechanic who worked out of his home had a dog named Mace. Mace had a bad habit of eating all the grass in the mechanic’s lawn, so the mechanic had to keep Mace inside. The grass eventually became overgrown. One day the mechanic was working on a car in his back yard and dropped his wrench losing it in the tall grass. He couldn’t find it for the life of him so decided to call it a day. That night Mace escaped from the house and ate all the grass in the back yard. The next morning the mechanic went outside and saw his wrench glinting in the sunlight. Realising what had happened he looked up the heavens and proclaimed ..."A grazing Mace, how sweet the hound, that saved a wrench for me!"


And the name’s McEvoy and I don’t care what you say!!!!



Brisbane's newest restaurant.


On Thursday 04 Sept, Kedron Wavell Services Club opened their new buffet style restaurant - Restaurant Thr3e.


Restaurant Thr3e  is open for Lunch and Dinner 7 days a week,


Monday – Thursday

Lunch 11.30am – 2pm | Dinner 5.00pm – 9pm


Friday & Saturday

Lunch 11.30am – 2pm | Dinner 5.00pm – 10pm



Lunch 11am – 2pm | Dinner 5.00pm – 9pm



You can either take your chances and walk in or pre-book and be sure of being seated at a time of your choosing. You would be well advised to pre-book as it is sure to be very popular. You can book by phoning 07 3350 0900 or log on HERE and eBook.


Click HERE for the menu.






Car Speedos.


Manufacturers place a plate on a vehicle to indicate that it complies with Australian requirements for vehicle safety, standards, Australian Design Rules, etc, and as such the requirements for accuracy of the speedometer is disclosed to the public. If an owner changes the configuration of their vehicle which alters the required specifications, it is their responsibility to ensure they have a way of knowing the correct speed of their vehicle.


The Australian Design Rules are available on the internet for people to ascertain the permitted tolerance for their car. The compliance with the design rules ensures a driver will not exceed the tolerance levels if they stay within the speed limits according to their speedometer.


There are various ways a motorist is able to check their vehicle’s speedometer for specific accuracy or gross error. A person can request a check (at their cost) from their auto club (NRMA/RAC/RAA) or have their motor mechanic do a test or use a GPS device. There are usually speedo checks on the highway too (set distances) but these require a bit of maths to work out time over distance.


The accuracy of vehicle speedos is covered by Australian Design Rule 18. Until July 2006 this rule specified an accuracy of +/- 10 percent of the vehicle’s true speed when the vehicle was travelling above 40km/h. That is, at a true vehicle speed of 100km/h the speedo was allowed to indicate between 90km/h and 110km/h. An odometer accuracy of +/- 4 percent was also a requirement.


From 1 July 2006 newly introduced models of a vehicle available on the market must comply with ADR 18/03 and on the 1st July 2007 the rule was changed to include any newly manufactured vehicle (excluding mopeds). This new rule requires that:


·       the speedo must not indicate a speed less than the vehicle’s true speed or,

·       a speed greater than the vehicle’s true speed by an amount more than 10 percent plus 4 km/h.


Significantly, this change means that speedos must always read 'safe', meaning that the vehicle's true speed must not be higher than the speed indicated by the speedo.


That is, at a true vehicle speed of 100km/h the speedo must read between 100km/h and 114km/h. An alternative way to look at it is; at an indicated speed of 100km/h, the vehicle's true speed must be between 87.3 km/h and 100km/h.


Significantly, this change means that speedos must always read ‘safe’, meaning that they are not permitted to read lower than the actual speed of the vehicle. Now you have no excuse!!!


Additionally, there is now no requirement to have an odometer, and therefore there is no accuracy requirement. This change was made to align Australian vehicle rules with those already in place in Europe.


Speed is the measurement of distance over time. But a car speedometer doesn’t actually measure how fast you travel from Point A to Point B, they usually work by measuring the speed of rotation of the car’s driveshaft, axle or wheel. They then use some basic maths to extrapolate that rotation and determine how fast you are travelling.


However, if the diameter of the wheel/tyre alters, the extrapolation calculation will be incorrect. For example, the diameter will increase if you put new tyres on the car (more tread, which wears down over thousands of miles) or you increase the tyre pressure. This means that, for each revolution of the wheel, the car is travelling further, meaning your speed is greater. If the diameter decreases (eg – worn tyres, less air in the tyres, a different brand of tyre with slightly different dimensions, more load in the car weighing it down and compressing the tyres), then the car will be travelling a shorter distance for each revolution of the wheel, therefore you will be going slower.


The differences in wheel diameter resulting from the above circumstances could be tiny (maybe a few millimetres), but at 30mph your car wheels are rotating 6-7 times every second, so it can quickly make a difference of a few miles per hour. This margin for error is taken into account in how the law is applied, and how manufacturers calibrate their car speedos.


Satellite navigation units (either portable or integrated into the car) calculate your car’s speed by measuring actual distance travelled over time using GPS satellite tracking. They repeatedly locate your exact position on earth via satellite and calculate how far you have travelled, then divide by the time it took for you to travel that distance. Satnav accuracy is determined by satellite signal quality and is unaffected by your car’s tyres. Many satnavs are unable to account for changes in vertical direction, so may be less accurate if you are travelling up or down a steep hill. They are also inherently more accurate at higher speeds, as a larger distance over time reduces rounding errors, but a satnav will usually be much closer to a car’s true speed than the speedometer. Some factory satnav systems will also use data from the car to integrate with the GPS signal to improve overall accuracy.



Dan was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the family business. When he found out he was going to inherit a fortune when his sickly father died, he decided he needed to find a wife with whom to share his fortune. One evening, at an investment meeting, he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her natural beauty took his breath away. "I may look like just an ordinary guy," he said to her, "but in just a few years, my father will die and I will inherit $200 million.". Impressed, the woman asked for his business card and three days later, she became his stepmother.   Women are so much better at financial planning than men.



Life Magazine.


Life magazine was an American pictorial magazine which ran weekly from 1883 to 1972, then intermittently until 1978, then monthly until it folded in 2000.  In March 1967 it did a short story on the Australian Army’s involvement in Vietnam, you can see it HERE.





Sign at a pub:

If you think our bar-maids are attractive – don’t drive!!





Vets retreats.


If you’re ex-Service and you like to hook up the van or load up the motor home and travel around a bit there are many camp sites all over the country that will welcome you and will give you a generous discount off the standard price. All you have to do is ring and book and mention you’re ex-Service. 


John Broughton - on the road again!!


If you’re interested, you can download a 12 page brochure outlining a few sites HERE.





Blessed are those who are cracked,

for they are the ones who let in the light!



Ok, Ok!! – I’m going back to my room now!!





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