31 October 2020

A very small world

Earlier this month I posted the story of Gerald Crawford and the relationship that this return established with Bob of the Mt Gambier RSL sub-branch. After the Crawford success, Bob told me that he had more medals that had come to him via the South Australian Police. The medals are the Australian Active Service Medal 1945-1975, the Australian Service Medal 1945-1975, the Australian Defence Medal and the Pingat Jasa Malaysia Medal all named to Hector Donald McKaskill.   

As soon as I saw the name it immediately rung a bell with me, but before I got to excited I needed to prove a link which I suspected existed. I found Hector in the electoral rolls and that he was an Army officer with many years service. I also found the Commonwealth Gazette entries that conformed several long service awards and promotions. I also found that Hector died in in 1995 in WA. It wasn't until I found the death notice of Hector's wife, Ruth, which mentioned her son David 'Spike' McKaskill, that I knew my initial suspicion was correct.   

Many who read this forum, particularly members of the Royal Australian Armourd Corps, will recognise the name 'Spike' McKaskill. Spike, like Hector, had a long career in the Australian Army reaching the rank of Brigadier before he retired. I worked for Spike when we were both posted to Land Development Branch in 2003-04. That is why the name McKaskill was so familiar to me when Bob first told me about these medals. 

Thank you to Lea who helped me reconnect with Spike.  

The returned meal tally is now 2577. 

Bob receiving Hector's medals from the SA Police









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