Duncan John GORDON

GORDON , Duncan John

Service Number: 4717496
Enlisted: Not yet discovered
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment (5RAR)
Born: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 6 January 1945
Home Town: Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia
Schooling: St Peter's College Adelaide, South Australia
Occupation: Not yet discovered
Died: Cancer, Adelaide, South Australia, 27 February 2020, aged 75 years
Cemetery: Payneham Cemetery, S.A.
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Vietnam War Service

22 Apr 1966: Involvement Australian Army, Private, SN 4717496, 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment (5RAR)

Passages from Duncan Gordon's memoirs.

The following are passages from Duncan Gordon's memoirs written in July 2004.

I was born in January 1945, and christened by the 9th Division Padre in my aunt’s home in Melbourne. My father an Instructor at the Senior School of Tactics at Beenleigh, was in uniform.

As a small boy growing up in Adelaide, my Grandmother often talked about my Grandfather who died years before I was born. As a young man in Melbourne he refused to accept the Australian Army opinion, he “Was not fit for active service.” His cousins were away, as artillery officers. With encouragement from Gladys and her entre to upper levels of society, he obtained introductions, she said, “From the Governor to the War Office in London.” He was permitted to travel to England to enlist, sailing in 1916.

“I said ‘I was going to England to nurse,’ and followed.” Gladys described her voyage through the Suez Canal with sandbags piled high along one side of the ship. “The Turks shot at anything that moved… In Cairo I stayed in Shepherd’s Hotel and visited the Pyramids at night with English Officers.”

Gladys continued, “ I reached Marseilles and was travelling alone. An English Officer was in my compartment on the train. Every time he attempted to engage me in conversation, I had a newspaper beside me on the seat. I pretended I was looking out the window or reading the paper. It was awful…”


“After I arrived in London Grandfather said to me, ‘Don’t go nursing. It is terrible. Marry me instead.’ My two sisters, Rene and Blanche had gone nursing. Rene told me the that the senior sisters were so horrible, and the conditions so grim, that she used to go and sit on the lavatory and cry and cry…”

“I lived in a little wooden cottage near the Officer Cadet Training Unit. Your Grandfather used to spend nights with me and get up early in the morning to return to the Unit. Do you know? He even had to polish the insteps of his riding boots. They had to lift their feet up on parade as they were inspected. The Royal Horse Artillery, Riding School was like nothing he had experienced. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant and sent to France. Your father was born in London, before the end of the War.”

Gladys left a comfortable existence in Australia to join the man she loved. The voyage to England qualified a soldier for post-war RSL membership… Cousins from Melbourne had come and gone to London during the War. I remember her appalled, telling me, a small boy thirty-six years later, about “munitions workers who had been swinging the lead” in England and were on their way home when their boat was torpedoed. One refused to put out a cigarette when they were on the deck of the blacked out vessel which had rescued them. Her cousin a Colonel was infuriated by this worker’s recalcitrance…

In Gladys’ hall there was a caricature of my Grandfather in France in the vicinity of shell shattered trees with a pipe in his mouth and the title “Some Gunner” drawn by Gunner Cooper who was in his Battery. On an adjoining wall were a rusty French Gras bayonet and a long German Mauser bayonet he had brought back from the front.

The Korean War caused a major effort in Australia to establish military forces able, to mobilize for service with the British Army in the Middle East. Dad had been a distinguished infantry officer in World War 11. He answered the call to the Colours.

The Khaki Drill uniforms had a pleated open field dressing pocket on the right hip. Dad explained, “It is accessible if you are wounded.” The Citizens Military Forces trained for conventional war in the Mallee and later the station country around Port Augusta.

In 1961 the tide of Communist insurgency in South East Asia, returned Army focus to Jungle Warfare. (Four years later, members of my generation who saw it as our duty, wore those Jungle Greens.)

On parades he wore a webbing belt with a curved holster and long barrelled revolver with a lanyard. His usual belt was a Sam Browne with the shoulder strap, which had been his father’s. It had cracks in the belt where the leather had deteriorated. “I put gun oil on it in Tobruk at one stage when we couldn’t get any boot polish. It ruined the leather.”

Dad never went anywhere in uniform without his swagger stick. This was leather and had a round ball at the top with a similar protrusion just forward of the grip. At an early age my brother and I discovered that the grip pulled away from the body, it was a swordstick. The fit at the top of the scabbard had worn. Dad usually had a couple of broken matches sitting at the mouth to seat the blade securely. It was much later in life that I queried the origins of the cruciform swordstick. Dad said, “I bought it in Cairo. The man who sold it to me said it had the blade of a French Berthier bayonet in it.”

In those days of National Service there was a Passing Out Parade every three months at Woodside. As a Battalion Commander Dad was an official guest. Travelling to Woodside as a family Dad driving “beloved” his black Daimler, would be in the long line of cars waiting to go through the various intersections to get into the Camp. Military Police corporals, wearing slouch hats, white webb. belts with shoulder straps, holsters with revolvers and MP arm bands, were on points duty near the camp. Harley Davidson motor-bikes and helmets stood behind them on the verge. Whenever we drove past the MP would snap to attention and throw a smart salute. The Passing Out Parades involved families across the social divide.

Fifty years later after a medal for National Service was minted, Dad was to ask me, “I commanded a National Service Battalion. Can’t I get one too?”

As a boy, I was aware of Dad’s .22 Mauser rifle. His father had given it to him on his twentieth birthday. He took it on rare family holidays and shot a duck, or rabbit as the opportunity arose. I enjoyed exploring his old carved polished wardrobe at each end of which was a suit hanging space. In the middle hinged doors covered shelves. Below were two drawers each of half width. The left was filled with old pipes, the right with ironed handkerchiefs, many of which were khaki. The smell of pipe tobacco in his handkerchiefs was a “Dad thing” I always took for granted on the many occasions he would tell me to blow my nose after some mishap and I was in tears. The bottom drawers held simply, clothes…

Dad was rarely without a pipe in his mouth. Old pipes were never thrown away. If one was accidentally lost and buried in the garden, the flavour improved out of sight by mellowing in the earth. He mentioned once that his father had carefully buried some pipes in the garden and had then forgotten where. In the desert Dad had never been without his pipe. Lawrence’s on the corner of King William and Rundle Streets sent him a pound of Rhodesian pipe tobacco every month.

As a young man I travelled to Tasmania working on a drilling rig. Consulting the RSL for ex 43rd men, I located Walter Davey. After exchanging letters I was invited to spend a weekend with his family. I caught a bus from Launceston to Branxholm where he had a dairy farm. Walter had been a Tasmanian Reinforcement to the mainly South Australian 2/43rd in the Middle East.

With his family around him, a fire warming the sitting room, Walter described how in the desert the company was going forward into an attack,

“Suddenly your father went down. We all dropped, ‘The skipper has been hit…’ Looking towards him wondering what was going to happen next, we noticed he was simply pausing to light his pipe. Once it was lit he signalled us to ‘Move on’ and we continued with the attack.”

Discussing my stay back in Adelaide Dad said, “When we were in New Guinea and I was going off to look around the company defences, many was the time Walter insisted on coming with me. He would say ‘I better come too,’ picking up his Owen Gun and joining me…He was always willing.”

The significance of Walter’s “willingness” comes on reflection of how exhausted I was at the end of a day in the bush in Vietnam. To get to your feet and follow the OC around, with your Owen Gun at the ready, your wits about you, as he personally gets into weapon pits to confirm that the siting will in fact achieve what he requires, not what looked good on the map at the “O Group”, speaks of a bond…

Suits and beribboned uniforms hung behind the mirrored doors. In a corner of the left hanging space concealed behind his uniforms stood Grandfather’s sword and the rifle hidden in a canvas scabbard. Where the bolt knob had worn a hole in the canvas it shone. The right space held his double-breasted business suits. In a corner of the shelf above were some old hats and two small white cardboard cartons with torn tops folded in. Standing on a chair I inspected the unmarked cartons. Each contained small cardboard boxes, in one were red and black boxes with ICI Civic .22 Rimfire Solid Bullets, contents 50, in the other, ICI Hollow Points.

The shelves stored such things as his father’s breeches: cavalry puttees: leather cavalry leggings with straps around the outside: a kilt, sporran: hose tops and spats: assorted army issue jungle green shirts, some with collars and studs: between the shirts was concealed an Arab dagger with a brass sheath and hilt set with coloured glass beads, like they carried in films: the Sam Browne: swagger sticks: and horsehair fly whisks. Pushed unobtrusively into a corner a wide round leather belt loop proved to be a holster with a large revolver in it.

The thick, brown, shiny leather holster hugged the shape of the cylinder. A cut-away area gave immediate access to the trigger. The stitching around the edge extended to the bottom where there were holes to allow a lace to be threaded through.

Examining a red horse-hair fly whisk with a horn handle, a leather loop and a carved face with eyes at the end. I recalled Gladys telling me at great length how at Tobruk, Dad had been incessantly and specifically shot at by a German. Dad suddenly realized the man was shooting at the red flick as he drove the flies away.

“The flies were so bad you had to hold your hand over your mug when you weren’t drinking from it…”

As a small boy growing up you take it for granted you will always remember Dad talking about the siege of Tobruk. A world of: Breda Guns, an Italian Light Machine Gun, “The Bush Artillery,” Italian field guns abandoned and without sights, fired by infantrymen for recreation: Patrolling at night in desert boots and khaki engineers overalls you had to strip off for a grunt out in no-man’s land: Of fifty round drum magazines on Tommy Guns rattling with movement… The shortages of water, “After water for cooking was rationed out, we had a water bottle to last us two days. Over a period of weeks I saved half a mug of water to wash my hair. I wet my hair and rubbed the soap in. That was it! I could only comb it into a coif… I did not have to brush my hair for six weeks after that.”

He told the story of the Manager of Shepherd’s Hotel who knocked on the door of an English officer’s room, “Sir! Sir! Would you please to stop shooting at the ceiling? It is the people in the room above…They are upset!” The officer was lying on his bed and shooting at flies on the ceiling with his revolver.

These reminiscences took place around the circular table in the kitchen. Situated in front of a fireplace where there had been a wood stove, a mantelpiece above, the radio on. Having regard to the numbers of veterans in the community, the ABC had a “Band Parade,” martial music played every Sunday. I vividly remember the Sunday night we were having supper. The ABC News intoned, “The French Fort of Dien Bien Phu has fallen…” Aged nine I had no comprehension this debacle was to dominate my adult life.

Dad was nominated by the Army to be President of the Rifle Association. In this capacity he attended combined service shoots at the Dean Range on Sunday mornings. While my mother and brother were asleep, he dressed in Khaki Drill with a webb. belt, boots and gaiters. Notwithstanding two rows of ribbons, he wore British Armoured Corp issue trousers with the field-dressing pocket on the front right thigh. Waking me up, I dressed and joined him in the kitchen where the hot water jug was boiling away with three eggs in. Toast was in the toaster with hinged flaps and the table was set. Breakfast was a quick affair of boiled eggs, toast and marmalade with mugs of tea.

We walked across the courtyard to the Mount Gambier stone barn he had designed and built with the help of Italian laborers who lived on adjoining market gardens. The 1938 straight eight Daimler was started up and away we drove from Lockleys to Port Adelaide.

Wearing his cap and carrying his swagger stick Dad stood behind the mound and chatted to the officers. On a rare occasion, after a shoot he fired a number of shots, one of which was a bulls-eye. When asked if he wanted to keep it he replied, “Yes. I don’t shoot many bulls-eyes.”

Dad was adamant that if I fired a Lee Enfield I “Might become gun-shy. Handicapped for life.” Thus I was determined to be a rifle shooter and join Cadets. My interest in rifles and shooting has become life-long.

In the summer, as a family we visited Gladys at the beach where she lived in what had been the family holiday house. After the war many men talked through their experiences. My Aunt Margaret, Dad’s sister and her husband Hugh who had served as an RAP Sergeant with the RAAF in New Guinea, with my cousins comprised the only family with whom we had a frequent involvement. Dad was reflecting at a family supper on the veranda overlooking the sea, “The Army only issues 12 rounds for revolver practice in a year. You need much more ammunition than that to become skilful with it. In my experience when you do need to use a revolver you need a lot of ammunition, and you need to be able to shoot quickly…”
He went on, “ I was sent to a lecture by a British Army pistol shooting expert in the Middle East, he told us the way to think of shooting a pistol is to imagine you are throwing a stone. Look at your target and snap a shot off with a quick aim…

At a later time the topic of the revolver came up. “You boys are never to touch it.” The wardrobe was secured. Once Dad brought it out to show us. “My father purchased this revolver when he was commissioned in 1916. He gave me this and his .25 Webley before I went away. I used to carry the Webley in the fob pocket of my Service Dress.

The first thing you do with any gun is to see that it is not loaded.” Grasping the revolver in his right hand Dad pushed forward on the chamber release and lightly tapped the cylinder from the right to swing it open. He explained “You place the cartridges in, clockwise from the top so that if things get out of hand and you haven’t time to load six rounds in, you can close the cylinder and get a couple of quick shots away. He demonstrated how you push up on the extractor. I made this holster in the Atherton Tablelands when we were training for New Guinea. I covered the revolver with greased rag and pressed wet leather around to get the fit, then sewed it. .

From the wardrobe Dad removed a flat brown leather holster with two straps coming up from the top. “In the Middle East, British officers used to have straps similar to those on the sword frog sewn onto their holsters and brass loops on the right side of their Sam Browne, he put it on to demonstrate. You carry the revolver low on the hip…

At El Alamein I carried this revolver. Sometimes we could not get .455 ammunition. I used to sit down with a quantity of Tommy gun .45 rimless ammunition a pair of pliers, and crimp the rims all round to improvise a flange.

“On July 17th 1942 when I was taking D Company of the 2/43 up Ruin Ridge we had gone forward 8,000 yards from the Start Line against the Sardinian Fusiliers and had dealt with them. There was a big chap, Gerry Dowling, killed in his first action by a direct hit from an anti-tank shell. Gerry had said, ‘I suppose I’ll be an early target…’ We lost quite a lot of blokes.

We started moving through the gun positions behind them. I had this revolver in my hand, when an Italian gunner officer came up out of his doover (dugout) unbuckling his belt and sliding his holstered pistol off, handed it to me.” (The pistol was a 7.65mm Beretta 1915. Dad received the Military Cross.)

“Meanwhile the 2/43rd (Lieut-Colonel Wain) had moved through at 6 a.m. on a two-company front with a third company 500 yards in rear astride the Quattara track. The leading companies advanced at the rate of 100 yards to the minute under severe shelling and reached Ruin Ridge about 7 a.m. The left company (Captain Gordon) met strong resistance and had to fight its way through extensive enemy positions in broken ground. In the left section all were wounded except Private Dean who fought on alone with a Bren and eventually rejoined his platoon 1,000 yards farther on. Gordon’s company took 400 prisoners. When it reached its objective on Ruin Ridge at 7.30 a.m. it found that 19 enemy guns were firing across its front from only 300 yards away. Gordon led out the left platoon and some men of company headquarters and captured the gun positions, taking 150 more prisoners and damaging or destroying three of the guns: they could not destroy the rest unless they were to use up all their anti-tank grenades, which they refrained from doing, knowing there were enemy tanks around.”

After El Alamein the battalion was moved to Palestine for rest and await transport back to Australia. Their camp at kilo post K89 was one of many situated at intervals along the road from Gaza to Tel Aviv. The area was Arab. There were orange orchards everywhere. Because of the war none of the produce could be exported. A company of troops could fill their haversacks with oranges for five shillings. The alternative was they had to be buried.

A typical camp was tents for the sleeping quarters. The offices and messes were comfortable buildings made with mud bricks. These bricks were simply mud and straw baked in the sun. The buildings had doors and glazed windows

Theft of personal weapons was a task occupying many Arabs. A tent full of soldiers who had their rifles chained together around a tent post woke up to find that during the night the tent had been skillfully loosened, lifted into the air and the pole tilted silently to allow the necklace of chained rifles to be slid clear and the tent re-erected in the dark…


Dad at this stage was the Adjutant. One evening a couple of his soldiers approached him and said, “Sir, an Arab has been asking us if we can sell him a revolver. He has said that if we bring the revolver to him at the deserted hut in the orange orchard east of the camp tonight at nine o’clock we can make much money.”

Dad, listened carefully and returned to his office. There he rang the Field Security Service detachment up the road and briefed them on what was occurring. In response they instructed him to accompany the soldier to the rendezvous and ask the Arab some questions. For their part the FSS would surround the hut. When Dad blew his whistle they would rush in and arrest the man involved. “Keep your wits about you old man,” were the parting words.

Substituting a slouch hat for his cap and wearing a great coat with the revolver in his pocket Dad and his soldier walked out through the orange orchards in the gloom to the abandoned hut.

Dad walked in the door and made certain the Arab was between him and the window of the one room hut. There was a brief conversation to which the Arab took exception. Next thing he was drawing his dagger and leaping towards Dad. The Smith and Wesson was out of the pocket and in the air, down it came on the Arab’s head… He blew the whistle.

“The Field Security Service blokes came rushing in and grabbed the Arab lifting him to his feet. They started bashing him. Barking at him in Arabic they attempted to find out whom he was working for. He was more scared of his boss than he was of us. They do things in wartime that they wouldn’t normally do.”

“What happened to him after that?” I asked.

“They handed me the dagger and sheath and took him away. I think they put him in gaol and later, when he was released tried to follow him and find out who his boss was.”

Late in my teens we went on a family holiday to Manunda station north of Morgan. Dad had brought his revolver and a webbing pouch with ammunition he had brought back from the war. Dad instructed my brother and I how to hold and fire the heavy revolver double action, and single action. We took it in turns to load and fire six shots at a large dead tree.

Dad’s closest friends were veterans. Invariably if he was talking about one of his contemporaries he would introduce the topic with “He went away with --- “

I was talking about Dad’s revolver during an afternoon tea. Russell responded. He had been trained as an Intelligence Officer after getting a party of soldiers out of Greece. Coming out of his OCTU in Egypt with a commission, and he was sent to a Divisional Headquarters without a weapon. “One of the British Officers on the staff gave me a .45 automatic. During the battle of El Alamein while I was looking around the forward positions I was walking along a trench when a German with a Spandau came round the corner. I shot him…”

I was not to marry until later in life. My mother was in her own world in a cottage in Norwood writing poetry. I joined Dad who had gone farming in his fifties in the Mallee. In the evenings Dad without explanation recounted battles, talking through actions he may still have been coming to terms with.

Dad had been the Adjutant of the Reinforcement Battalion for his Brigade based in Gaza. He was given three days Leave and had been driven up to Tel Aviv. He was walking along a city street when a 2/43rd vehicle pulled up, “We are going back to the desert. Where are your things?” In the vehicle they returned to his hotel and collected his kit. The vehicle went on to Gaza and picked up other officers who were wanted. The Battalion was already on its’ way in from Syria. “We were to rendezvous at Beersheba.”

“Convoys travelled twenty vehicles to the mile. Fuel dumps were long lines of four gallon tins piled high, which covered a square mile. The trucks drove down the rows, stopped and punched a hole in the top of the tin and poured it in, repeating the process until the tank was full. The forward vehicles were on their way well before the last ones had filled.”

“As we travelled from Cairo to El Alamein columns of vehicles came towards us. There was an unending stream of them. The RAF evacuated a lot of airfields. Their trucks and low-loaders had all their ground staff and machinery… They had been badly chopped about…. The German Air Force strafed us a couple of times, but they had been unable to move their fuel supplies forward. The RAF had air supremacy.”

“Towards the end of the battle, we were in ‘The Cauldron.’ This was the area between the only sealed road running west, and the railway line. The Germans had tried to break us, but we had held… This area protected the flank of the rest of the army. It was the hinge of the battle. There were forty 6 pounder anti-tank guns dug in around us. In the event of a German attack, gun-fire from the 9th Divisional Artillery Regiments could be called to fire salvoes into “Stomps” (five hundred by two hundred yard areas which surrounded our position,) for which the ranges and bearings were recorded. If that wasn’t enough, we could call in fire from Artillery Regiments of other Divisions.

An order came in for the Battalion to send out a ‘Fighting Patrol.’

Everyone knew that it was suicide. The CO queried it. From the highest level he was told, “It was to go ahead.” Jack Minnocks who was commanding C Company, my old company, was to send out two platoons. He insisted if his men were going so was he. The CO tried to argue with him but Jack was adamant.”

“We all tried to give as much fire support as we could. They were cut to pieces just forward of our lines. Jack and the other officer were killed. It was a bad show…”

“There was nothing we could do. Later we learned that further south, units had pushed well into the German lines and made big advances. This was the precursor to our armour breaking through the Germans. They broke the following day, and retreated.”

Snippets of remarks by Walter, “At one stage the “O” Group was hit by a shell. All the battalion’s officers but your father were dead or wounded, he took charge and ran the battalion…”

Tied in with an overhead conversation forty years later. Dad was on the phone… “My pants were covered in gore. Don Taylor the QM arrived with the rations and ammuniton. I told Don to, “Give me your pants.’ He argued. I insisted he could replace them, I couldn’t.“

Dad elaborated, “It was towards the end of the battle. Ken Stokes my Assistant Adjutant and Dave Siekman were twenty yards away on the telephone. The shell hit the “O” Group killing or wounding all the Battalion officers, the attached artillery observers and Rhodesian anti-tank officers. Only six officers were left standing. The CO had been hit the night before. Brigade headquarters had also been hit. The Brigadier and many of the staff were dead… I discussed the situation with Don Jackson the Brigade Major…”

Walter’s knowledge of Dad’s role on that day was corroborated and elucidated. The official histories do not reflect those events in the memories of the soldiers who followed Dad.

Years later Dad described the march from Torrens Parade Ground to the Mitcham Camp where the Daws Road High School is. The 9th Division had returned from the Middle East and everyone had a week’s leave. The units assembled and marched through the city with bands playing, and down Goodwood Road. We changed arms frequently on the march. You carry the rifle on the other shoulder. The hard road was brutal on our soft feet. The entire route was lined with women and children cheering and giving us fruit. The reception was tumultuous. At the end of the march we had to wait three quarters of an hour for the Governor, an English civilian to come and take the March Past. At the end of the March Past, we had presented arms for the “Royal Salute.” Brigadier Tom Eastick who was a gunner, gave the order, “Stand at, Ease,” forgetting the Infantry were at the “Present Arms.” I was standing directly behind him. Being trained troops they came to the “Shoulder Arms” and “Order Arms” by movements, and then stood “.At, Ease.” With the slap of each movement I could see Tom’s neck getting redder and redder.”

Within a few years the revolver Lt John Todd Gordon carried in France will be an antique. In my boyhood it was a tangible artifact of what duty stood for.

At my Passing Out Parade at Puckapunyal in 1965 we marched past in line abreast, to “Left Form” at the far corner of the Parade Ground. A solitary man was standing to attention in his overcoat, Dad stood rigid his grey eyes looking directly into mine.

Within decades a society dominated by politically correct do-gooders many with family traditions of resistance to conscription extending back to my grandfather’s day, convinced society and the Vietnam Veterans they were held in opprobrium. Two veterans committed suicide for every battle death…at last count.

On ANZAC Day (2004) I was waiting alone for my train. A young man carrying two huge Harris Scarfe shopping bags walked across to me, placed the bags down and extended his hand, “I want to thank you for what you did.”


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Vietnam veteran Duncan Gordon represents third generation of service to nation

“Three generations of the Gordon family have served in wars and the same Smith and Wesson revolver has played an integral role for each of them.

The Smith and Wesson Mark II .455 inch calibre revolver was first carried into World War I by Lt John Todd Gordon when he was commissioned in 1916.

His son, John Duncan Gordon, carried the same revolver into World War II. He was later awarded the Military Cross for acts of exemplary gallantry while serving with the 2/43rd Battalion at El Alamein, Egypt.

Mr Gordon returned to Australia and started a family.

Mr Gordon's son, Duncan Gordon, recalls hearing numerous war stories from his grandmother and father. "My earliest memory would be some of the parades he would march in, carrying the revolver," Duncan Gordon, of Maslin Beach, said. "Hearing all those anecdotes of war, you think that it's your duty to follow in their footsteps and serve your country. Three generations of my family have made a commitment to serve."

Now aged 68, Duncan Gordon served in Vietnam between April 1966 and May 1967.
"At one stage it was permitted and you could carry another weapon (but) you weren't allowed to take your own pistol (to Vietnam)," he said.

Mr Gordon said he planned to march in the ANZAC Day parade again this year and recalled a heart-warming moment that touched him emotionally on the day in 2004.
"I was waiting alone on the platform at the Adelaide Railway Station and this young man walked towards me and extended his hand and said `I want to thank you for what you did'," Mr Gordon said. "I didn't know him from a bar of soap. It was rather an emotional experience."

Article written by Ben Hyde, AdelaideNow
April 24, 2013

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Biography contributed by Robert Kearney

PTE Duncan Gordon, late of Sellicks Beach SA, died on Wednesday 26 February. He had been suffering from throat cancer for quite some time and had been in a care facility for a few weeks.

Duncan deployed to South Vietnam aboard HMAS Sydney with 9 Platoon, C Company on 22 April 1966. He served as a rifleman in that platoon for approximately six months and then worked in the Sergeant’s Mess for the remainder of the tour. He returned to Australia with the Battalion, aboard HMAS Sydney on 12 May 1967.  - Courtesy of Gary Townsend

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