28 Apr

Honouring Ron and those who served and sacrificed

We recently commemorated Anzac Day on Tuesday 25 April by paying tribute and recognising the sacrifices of our servicemen and women, including those who are no longer with us.

Meet Ron, one of the lovely residents at St Martin’s Residential Aged Care, who served in the Australian Defence Force and is a living testament to the ANZAC spirit.

Anglicare St Martin’s resident Ronald Stanley James donning his Australian Defence Medals proudly this Anzac Day, Tuesday 25 April 2023. Photo: Anglicare Southern Queensland

Ronald Stanley James is a resident at Anglicare Southern Queensland’s St Martin’s Residential Aged Care Home in Taigum. Donning his medals proudly, Mr James reminisced on his training days at Wacol Army Barracks where he was both a Private and Senior Sergeant before being posted to the Water Street Army Depot, formerly known as the valley drill hall in the medical corp.

This was used primarily as a recruit processing centre for the Australian Military Forces (militia), the 6th Division A.I.F., the Volunteer Defence Corps and the Civil Construction Corps during World War II. Mr James helped undertake medical examinations for prospective volunteers at the Depot.

Ron was born in Indooroopilly and has been at St Martin’s for around 18 months. Over the course of his career, he has done a lot. This includes playing soccer for Queensland, managing a country club and bar in Strathpine, and advertising and car appraisals.

Ron began his training as a Private in Wacol and finished as a Senior Sergeant several years later. He was awarded the Australian Defence Medals for his dedication and longevity of service.

Ron decided to end his service when he got married to a beautiful Belgian woman, Rita. A 58-year-long marriage resulted in four children, nine grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. What a legacy.

As someone who was prepared to defend his country if needed, Ron believes it’s important for individuals and communities to commemorate ANZAC Day.

“It’s a very special day,” he said. “The training, I and many others went through is all about discipline. At first, I just thought ‘I may as well do it’, but I’ve since realized how important it was.”

Thank you to Ron for sharing his story this Anzac Day.