Good memories outweigh bad for veteran

Peter Lofdahl, president of the Quinns Rocks RSL, has fond memories of mateship during his tour in Vietnam.
Peter Lofdahl, president of the Quinns Rocks RSL, has fond memories of mateship during his tour in Vietnam.

The Clarkson resident, who became president of Quinns Rocks RSL in January, said April 25 was an opportunity to recognise all those who had served or were still serving in the Defence Force.

�I served in Vietnam � your mind goes back and it generally goes back to the good things, not the not-so-good times,� he said.

�I think of my mates � I�m still in contact with most that I served with; we still have a laugh and a joke.

�I was a national serviceman. I served in Vietnam with the signals; I enjoyed it.

�When my two years were up, I came out, which I regret � I should have stayed in. I think I would have enjoyed it.

�We were told when we first went up there that you had to behave yourself because it was someone else�s country.

�It�s a beautiful country � the scenery is fantastic and the people.�

Having joined Quinns Rocks RSL 10 years ago, Mr Lofdahl said he was also a member of the Royal Australian Signals Association, and has been its presidents for 22 years in total.

�I was 20 when I joined,� he said.

�I went up April �68 and came back Mother�s Day �69 � I was a Mother�s Day present.

�Got home at 11pm � I took her out on the Monday for dinner.�

The grandfather said the RSL generally aimed to take care of ex-service men and women and their families.

�For some people it�s hard because they have lost loved ones or family members � we try look after them and make sure that they are not feeling alone,� he said.

�The RSL has a, particularly now, a big role to play in looking after the members that have come back from overseas, particularly Afghanistan and Iraq.

�They are going to experience the same traumas that we went through.

�I�m proud of the RSL and I�m proud of the job that it does.�