Members of Parade’s final year class of 1987 have celebrated their 30th anniversary reunion with gusto at the Bundoora Campus.
A total of 63 former students, amongst them the Australian Greens
Leader Dr Richard Di Natale, renewed acquaintance in what was a
boisterous affair in
the Hickey Foyer and (later) the Frank Mount Social Room.
Former teachers Ian and Barbara Bibby, John Joss and John Ramsdale were also in attendance.
Captain Gerard Smith, when asked to cast his mind back to the College he remembered of 30 years past, replied: “My memory’s generally not so flash, but it was very different to what I see today, that’s for sure”.
“Some of my memories are of having a kick of the football over there on the front paddock – not even sure if it’s still there – with Terry Keays climbing all over our heads as frequently as he possibly could,” Gerard said.
“Another involves Dale Bottomley having me a headlock for the best part of an hour in the quadrangle.”
When asked of his days beyond Bundoora, Gerard, a radiologist by
profession, replied: “This time of life is, I hope, pretty good for most
“A lot of us have done some hard yards - and in my case the kids have come along in the ten years since the last reunion, so a lot has changed for me personally,” Gerard said.
“I changed a lot after leaving Parade, quite rapidly I think, but nonetheless it was the education at Parade that allowed me to kick on.”
Old Paradians’ Association President Lewis Derrico took the opportunity to remind those in attendance that for every Old Paradian attending any reunion, there was always another opting out for whatever reason.
“This group here has, over the years, proved itself to be a very solid group, but I always think of those blokes who front up in a taxi then turn back at the last minute and go home because maybe they think they’re not up to speed or a failure,” Lewis said.
“There’s many who don’t come back because they feel they’re not worthy to come back or they’re embarrassed to come back or whatever else, and at functions like these you find out who’s not here.
“I’m really proud that you came together here, but remember those who aren’t here, because there are a lot of you with a lot of energy who can make a difference. The simple challenge for you is not to lose contact, because that contact, as you get older, becomes even more important.”
Apologies were accepted from a number of former students who due to circumstance could not attend.
A minute’s silence was also observed for Paul Colautti, Anthony Munari and John Watson – members of the class of ’87 lost along the way.