Collector’s item will be reunion dividend
J K Murray

Of DC's daughters and DC raincoats

David Westover broke a lot of hearts at ASOPA when he married Lorraine Bell (who remains the first Mrs Westover). David is a quiet and unassuming a bloke, a real solid citizen, who sails his “very fat” (as Lorraine calls it) 42 ft ketch Moana solo when he can’t get crew. After ASOPA he went on to executive education positions in the Northern Territory and South Australia and was Director of Education in Nauru for a period. When David turned up for the CEO’s course at ASOPA in 1962-63, he’d been there five years before. But David can tell the story.

“I first attended ASOPA in 1957 as part of a short orientation program for service in PNG. The program was split between Mosman and Moresby and was intended mainly to reduce the effect of culture shock.

"The lectures at ASOPA introduced us to place names like Mount Hagen and Green River and to personalities like the Morobe District Commissioner Horrie Niall and Jim McAdam, famed for his exploits as a coastwatcher and my boss in the Forestry Department until his untimely death in Queensland while on leave. Later, in PNG, it wasn’t DC Niall who made the impression on the young fellows but his daughter, Lois.

Dc4_mascot “We flew to Moresby for the first time in a DC4, which remains the only time I’ve been issued with a raincoat on an aircraft. The plane passed through heavy storm activity off the north Queensland coast – and leaked so much so the hostess felt these young characters up in first class should have some protection.”

David’s full story, and some of his original 1950s PNG photos, in a future Mail.


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Richard E. Jones

Like David I, too, have flown on a DC4. It wasn't a Qantas aircraft though, but one belonging to the French airline UTA's fleet.
The flight came about while we were in New Caledonia for the Second South Pacific Games in 1966.
Along with a fellow Moresby traveller, one Colin Buscombe, and two or three others we headed out to the Noumea airport for some sort of UTA milk run.
Not being of a diary keeping bent back in those halcyon days of the 60s -- unlike today when many scrawlings are entered daily in the trusty book --- I can't remember much about where we actually flew.
I do recall, though, that the back door was open the whole flight. It was through this doorway that stuff was heaved out for the waiting Melanesians on the deck below in the settlements, atolls and islands we flew over.
Hopefully there were parachutes attached so that something could be retrieved when the pallets reached ground level.
On the way back I do remember flying over the fabled Isle of Pines, off the southern tip of New Caledonia. Even 40 years ago this retreat was a prized holiday destination for tourists, just as it is today.
Anyway, when this exhilarating flight was over we landed back in Noumea and we Moresby-ites whisked our newfound UTA mates back to our Anse Vata Beach hotel.
Over a number of soothing aperitifs the crew ensured we knew how to pronounce the name of their airline.
It was not Yew-Tee-Ay.
Indeed not. The French said: Oo-Tay-Ah.
Incidentally, during competition at those aforementioned Noumea Games one Bobby "Moose" David was present along with Dave Keating.
Moose heaved the shot, and maybe the discus, wearing his PNG colours. Mr Keating would have competed on the track.

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