George Petrou’ s exhibition makes final stop of national tour at Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance
Victoria Cross recipient Warrant Officer Keith Payne
Melbourne, AUSTRALIA — 14 December, 2017 — Findex, Australia’s largest privately-owned accountancy and financial advisory firm is proud to support George Petrou’s ‘The Victoria Cross’ exhibition, which has toured across Australia, culminating at Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance this evening with special guest, Victoria Cross recipient Keith Payne OAM.
Findex and artist George Petrou collaborated for the second year running to deliver George’s work in an inspiring roadshow across the country, having visited a total of 12 cities across Australia, finishing at the iconic war memorial in Melbourne.
The artworks presented in the roadshow feature all of the Australian recipients of the Victoria Cross, the highest decoration for gallantry ‘in the presence of the enemy’ awarded to members of the British and Commonwealth armed forces.
Warrant Officer Keith Payne fought in the Korean War from April 1952 to March 1953 and was deployed to Vietnam from February 1969. In May 1969, while commanding the 212th Company of the 1st Mobile Strike Force Battalion, he was attacked by a strong North Vietnamese force near Ben Het Camp. His company was isolated and surrounded on three sides. Payne’s Vietnamese troops began to fall back. Payne, by now wounded in the hands and arms and under heavy fire, covered the withdrawal before organising his troops into a defensive perimeter.
He then spent three hours scouring the scene of the day’s fight for isolated and wounded soldiers, all the while evading the enemy who kept up regular fire. He found some forty wounded men, brought some in himself and organised the rescue of the others, leading the party back to base through enemy dominated terrain.
“The roadshow has presented the perfect opportunity to provide attendees with a resounding and genuine way of paying tribute to those who have valiantly fought for our country, and in doing so sacrificed so much,” said George Petrou.
Additional notable guests in attendance include:
Doug’s son Cameron Baird VC MG was an Australian soldier and posthumous recipient of the Victoria Cross of Australia. Cameron was the 100th VC recipient and to date our last.
A lifetime of writing has seen the production of four novels and many short stories. Michael is a multi-award winning writer. Australian Military history, Medal mounting and the Victoria Cross rifled Michael towards what has become his flagship work, ‘The Victoria Cross – Australian Remembers’, book publication set for released April 2018
Michael was appointed Professor of Commerce at La Trobe University. Having previously published books about economics and finance, ‘Hard Jacka’ was his first novel followed up with ‘Return of the Gallipoli Legend’ about Australia’s famous Victoria Cross recipient Albert Jacka VC.
Attendees will have the opportunity to chat one on one with the guest speaker and the artist himself. As well as liaise with Findex executives — CEO, Spiro Paule and Chief Operations Officer Tony Roussos.
December 13th & 14th
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