REDHS un­veils WWII stat­ues

Campaspe News - - NEWS - By STEPHANIE HOR­TON

ABOUT 200 peo­ple con­verged on Rochester and El­more District Health Ser­vice to see the new memo­rial stat­ues.

The life-sized stat­ues of a World War II sol­dier and nurse were un­veiled on Thurs­day, just in time for the 99th an­niver­sary of the Ar­mistice.

Present at the un­veil­ing were mem­ber for Mur­ray Plains Peter Walsh, Coun­cil­lor Leigh Wil­son and Ma­jor Gen­eral Brian Daw­son AM CSC (Ret’d).

The sculp­tures were hand­carved by sculp­tor Richard Yates and will stand at the en­trance to the hos­pi­tal.

‘‘They were both carved from a sin­gle piece of cy­press pine,’’ Richard said.

‘‘Af­ter a lot of col­lab­o­ra­tion and con­sul­ta­tion with some old fam­ily pho­tos and ideas we came to the con­clu­sion that the sol­dier and the nurse would be best rep­re­sented to­gether.

‘‘The sol­dier is hold­ing a cane and the nurse is help­ing his other arm — like they are walk­ing out of the hos­pi­tal.

‘‘I guess we thought it would be nice to rep­re­sent how it was — that the nurse would help the sol­diers heal and then help them walk out of there.’’

Richard said he paid par­tic­u­lar at­ten­tion to the uni­forms.

‘‘The pho­tos of fam­ily mem­bers were very help­ful and I tried to make the uni­forms as real as I could with all the lit­tle de­tails on them,’’ he said.

‘‘It was im­por­tant to both me and the organising com­mit­tee to have it rep­re­sent two peo­ple who were per­haps from Rochester dur­ing that time.’’

Richard used mainly power tools to pro­duce the two fig­ures.

‘‘I like us­ing chain­saws and all sorts of power tools to cre­ate my sculp­tures,’’ Richard said.

‘‘Each sculp­ture took just un­der a month to make but in­clud­ing paint­ing they prob­a­bly took closer to six weeks each.’’

Rochester RSL vice-pres­i­dent Tony McMa­hon pays his re­spects.

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