The Wright Room at Parade's Ambrose Treacy Pavilion provided the venue for a luncheon to celebrate our Veterans and for members of the 1983 and 1993 1st XVIII Herald Shield winning team to gather to revisit those achievements from 30 and 40 years ago.

We were able to welcome back to the College former Principal Br Laurie Collins, who in his first year as Principal of the College was able to secure its first Herald Shield win. His reflection and grace before our meal was outstanding. Brownlow medalist and Hall of Fame inductee Peter Bedford was also a special guest.

The luncheon took place prior to the 1st XVIII Parade College vs St Joseph’s Geelong match. The Parade side has been performing extremely well being undefeated prior to the match. St Joseph’s needed a win to keep their finals hopes alive. Coaches Rick Dyson and Ben Turner have the team playing a winning and exciting brand of football. The home team won comfortably in the end. A great photo of the team with Peter Bedford was taken after the match.

Acting Principal Mary Dourios was able to welcome guests to the College and speak of the efforts made by the Old Paradians' Association to encourage and celebrate connection that occasions such as the day provided.

We were able to remember those involved in both wins that have passed away. Coach in 1983, Br Tim Bilston and trainer Darren Chapple. From 1993, players Nathan Jones and Brendan Phelan and Team Manager Bernie Donahue were all remembered.

John Joss, Vietnam Veteran, Honorary Old Paradian and long-term former staff member led a respectful rendition of the Ode of Remembrance. Old Paradians have been involved in every major conflict in the past 100 years, many paying the ultimate sacrifice. Our veterans, Ian Dunn, John Sonneveld as well as Peter Blackman and Alan Comben from the DVVV, were able to, in some way, symbolise that service and sacrifice.

Marcus Barber brought his signed 1st XVIII football jumper from the winning game in 1983 and donated it to the archives. The 1993 match ball signed by all players also turned up during the week. Ryan Wilson (who now resides in Sydney and was down in Melbourne for Mothers Day) dropped the ball, which had been under his bed for the past 20 years plus, into the College.

1983 Captain and current staff member Mark Beers, Vice-Captain Martin Heffernan and Deputy and long-term staff member Paul Fahey came to the microphone and shared some memories of the team’s win over Haileybury. It was evident that the group have stayed very tight over the past 40 years. Similarly, 1993 Coach and long-term staff member Tony McKay, Captain Scott La Ferlita and Vice-Captain Daniel Harford also spoke of the game that was largely over at quarter time where Parade trounced Catholic College Bendigo by over 100 points. It was a star-studded team with Daniel Harford, Blake Caracella, Jarrod Molloy and Daniel Lowther going on to AFL Football, a number played in what was then the VFA and the strong local Diamond Valley football league. The win started a string of wins where Parade secured 5 out of the next 6 Shields.

Both team members spoke with great pride in attending Parade and of the achievement. Daniel Harford spoke of watching Channel 7 replays of Parade exploits on Saturday mornings as a young fellow.

Spitting Image Catering again did a terrific job with the catering. We are grateful to College events team in Kylie Hannam and SOGGIES in assisting with the success of the day. Lexie Stewart, Alumni Officer and Development Team member, also did a superb job in all the preparations. We are most indebted to her.

We look forward to 2024 Veterans Lunch, Bedford Madden Shield and the 1994 30 year Herald Shield winning team gathering.