With the coronation of the new monarch earlier this year, the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (6RAR) has become the first regiment to unveil its new King’s and Regimental Colours.
CAPTION: Soldiers of the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment stand to attention during the battalion’s King’s and Regimental Colours Parade. Story and photo by Corporal Jacob Joseph.
The new Colours were uncased and paraded in front of hundreds of current and ex-serving 6RAR personnel at Gallipoli Barracks this month to mark the battalion’s 58th birthday.
New theatre honours for Iraq and East Timor, and the Afghanistan Streamer joined names like Long Tan and other honours of the regiment – battles and operations woven into the fabric of infantry history.
It’s a history lived by veterans like John Hazlewood.
Mr Hazlewood was an original member of the battalion and fought in the Battle of Long Tan, an Australian victory against the odds.
Mr Hazlewood and other veterans uncased the old Colours before they were marched in front of the battalion one last time.
The standards brought back memories of mateship.
“We all came together in 1965, half conscripts and half regular soldiers,” Mr Hazlewood said.
“Within two or three months we’d all melded together and were working as one.
“The Colours bring it all back to me and I appreciate what they mean to the battalion and Army.”
CAPTION: Governor-General General (retd) David Hurley inspects the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment’s King’s and Regimental Colours. Photo by Corporal Nicole Dorrett.
Governor-General General (retd) David Hurley, who joined Chief of Army Lieutenant General Simon Stuart for the parade, said 6RAR had served the country with distinction for the past 58 years.
“The Colours represent the legacy of those who have gone before you,” General Hurley said.
“Your service comes with great responsibility; you are custodians of their legacy as you build your own story.”
For Major Sean Caughey, Officer Commanding Delta Company, his family’s story was as colourful as the banners on the parade ground.
His uncle was a former 6RAR commanding officer, his father was a platoon sergeant and both brothers were section commanders.
“Some of those who’ve gone before us have paid the ultimate sacrifice,” Major Caughey said.
“The Colours are our heritage and we carry them with pride.”
CAPTION: Soldiers of 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment salute during the King’s and Regimental Colours parade at Gallipoli Barracks, Brisbane. Photo by Corporal Nicole Dorrett.