On 31 March 2021, the Royal Australian Defence Force marked its 100th year in the service. This week, we were given the opportunity to speak with a RAAF veteran who proudly shows his pride and is always keeping the spirit alive.
About Syd Hallas
Syd joined the RAAF in Jubilee Year (1971) 8 days short of 19. He joined in the hopes of learning a trade. He did rookies at the RAAF Edinburgh SA and radio tech training at RAAF Laverton VIC.
He was then assigned to 3TelU at the RAAF Base Pearce WA then he went to Base Squadron Darwin after Cyclone Tracey. Afterwards, he went to Base Squadron Townsville and was discharged at the RAAF Base Amberley in July 1980.
What does Keeping the Spirit Alive mean to you?
I believe that staying in touch with old RAAF mates, supporting the RSL and its projects, and passing on the sacrifices of the vets to the young is Keeping the Spirit Alive.
Who are your heroes? Who do you look up to?
I consider the current servicemen and women my heroes. Those serving on the frontline protecting our country both at home and abroad.
What is your favourite DSA shirt?
I am particularly proud of my True Blue Aussie shirt which I received for Australia Day this year. I wore it proudly that day and has worn it many times since. I am also very fond of the Centenary of Gallipoli shirt my wife bought for me a few years ago.
As someone who served in the RAAF and has always been supporting DSA and its mission, what is your message to our DSA community?
The DSA provides everyone the ability to recognise the contribution to our country of its many frontline workers both past and present.
How did you find out about DSA?
I’ve been only aware of DSA because my wife has bought my shirts through you and she read me the RAAF Centenary blog.
How do you feel about the RAAF celebrating its Centenary this year?
Celebrating of the RAAF Centenary is important because although it has changed greatly since I joined so many years ago, it is vital that people recognise the service and protection the RAAF has provided Australia both at home and abroad. Although the modern RAAF is one of the innovations, it is based on the achievements and expertise of the past.
Salute to a century of service.