The Respect our Own project had its beginning in the mid 70’s when Roy Aveling and Paul Calleja began contacting the 1963 and other DLS alumni for informal “old boys’” lunches. This continued over the years with an increasing number of guys attending as the means of communication were enhanced via the advent of emails.

Fast forward to 2020 when Paul and Roy were discussing a book, Son of Vietnam, authored by Paul about the harrowing and courageous experiences of a Vietnamese family to escape from Vietnam as refugees to Australia.  Incidentally, Roy had been informed by Alan Ferdinands, a DLS old boy living in Qld who is a Vietnam Vet, of the large percentage of our school mates who had been conscripted and served in Vietnam.

Motivated by the objective to have their school mates acknowledged, they formed a committee of their ’63 cohort, as below, with whom they had been meeting for the lunches over many years. Timeliness was a factor as the 50 year anniversary of Australia’s withdrawal from that war was approaching.

The committee decided to acknowledge the Vets by giving them a forum to tell their stories; the result is this website.

It was launched at an event in Midland attended by nine vets.

As De La Sallians we learnt to respect our peers. This is how we have chosen to do it.

We invite you to celebrate the stories of the experiences, generously provided by our Vets, and view the honour board, including the names of those who have passed away. They served their country and we acknowledge and honour them accordingly, our schoolmates.

Roy Aveling, Greg Branson (Melbourne), Paul Calleja, Ian Campbell, Kevin Smith, Rudi Kerenyi, John Rengel, David Costello.
Valuable support and information, stats and history, provided by Alan Ferdinands (Qld).