Getting to know…

Almost every month, we profile another club member in this section. Most of the interviews have been done by veteran member, Gordon Keatch. If you are new to our club, you might get a call from Gordon for an interview. If you have a suggestion of someone who might be due for an update, please let us know. Click on the headlines to read the entire interview.


  • September 13, 2017Yarn for September 2017
    The September issue of the Southern Yarn is available for you to download now! Get the details on the most recent and the upcoming activities, including our formal dinner, for which you need to make a menu selection as part of your RRSP. Get on it, mates!
  • June 14, 2017The Southern Yarn – June 2017
     Yarn2017_06-June Sorry for the late posting of this month’s newsletter, mates! Inside is lots of read, and don’t forget the seventh page, exclusive to our colour online version! Don’t you feel special now?
  • April 9, 2017Yarn April 2017
    The April 2017 issue of The Southern Yarn is here for your reading. We mark the 100th anniversary of Vimy Ridge, along with the 150th year of Canada. Lots of news items for everyone. Note: Some important location changes for the passports appointments and the alumni event. Read the bottom of page one.
  • February 13, 2017Yarn February 2017
    Time to read the Yarn again! Check it out online for the colour, the links at the end of many articles, and the extra page of content.  
  • January 17, 2017Jan 2017 Yarn
    Another year is upon us, and the Yarn keeps on delivering! Volunteer driven efforts sometimes result in delays, but we come through buysoma.net eventually. Download it now here, or go to the Yarns page and find the current and back issues of The Yarn.
  • December 12, 2016December Yarn
    The December Yarn was done on time, but posted here a title late. Sorry folks! Catch up on all the news! Yarn page is here. All the best for Christmas and a terrific conclusion to 2016.
  • May 1, 2016Happy birthday, Mr Keatch!
    On behalf of everyone in the Down Under Club, happy birthday to our mate, Gordon Keatch, who is celebrating 92 years young. For he’s a jolly good fellow, and so say all of us! x
  • March 10, 2016Yarn March 2016
    The March 2016 issue of The Yarn will be in the post soon, but you can download it here, in glorious colour! Remember, too, that the digital edition often has little web links at the end of some stories, where you can go and read more details. Enjoy!
  • October 6, 2015Yarn October 2015
    The October, 2015 issue of The Southern Yarn is ready for you to view and download. Print it out if you like, even in colour on your own printer! We’ve got details on the annual Formal Dinner and lot more to read. And if you have not renewed your DUCW membership, this is a great month to get that task done. Pay online or, even better, at the Formal Dinner.
  • November 10, 2014Matthew Flinders (1774-1814)
    We’ve had many ‘Getting to Know’ interviews with our club members, so we are also featuring some brief biographies of notable Australians and New Zealanders from history. – Ed. Raised in Lincolnshire, where men usually turned to agriculture for a livelihood, Matthew Flinders showed originality by choosing the sea. Flinders was born on 16 March 1774 at Donington, Lincolnshire. From a family of doctors, Flinders was expected to take up the same profession, but inspired by reports of Cook’s discoveries, and the reading of Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, he decided to go to sea. Flinders began his naval career at the age of ...
  • September 12, 2014Getting to Know: Gordon Keatch
    Gordon Keatch One of our favourite people, Gordon Keatch, has retired as our intrepid “getting to know” columnist. In his letter of retirement, Gord wrote that his monthly column in The Southern Yarn about getting to know members was “a most rewarding and interesting experience”. We are looking for someone to take over the column, but first we thought we’d let you all “get to know” Gord a little better. Originally from Melbourne, Australia, Gordon “Kangaroo” Keatch came to Canada in December 1943 when he began military training as a wireless/air gunner under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP). More about this ...
  • July 18, 2014Thank you, Mr Keatch
    One of our favourite people, Gordon Keatch, has decided to put down his pen as our intrepid “getting to know” columnist. And since he did so in a most official and gentlemanly way, we decided to share his letter of “resignation” for everyone to see (click below). Thanks, Gordon, for telling the stories of 150 or more members over the years and helping us really get to know each other. Cheers, mate! Gordon’s letter 2014 PS If anyone is interested in taking up the pen and keeping the column going, we’d love to hear from you.
  • March 12, 2014Dennis and Janet Woodford
    Getting to Know: Dennis and Janet Woodford I have said it before, but it bears repeating, that I am often struck by the careers of many of our members who have come from rather humble beginnings. Dennis Woodford is no exception. He was born in Melbourne, Australia. His father, a WWII veteran, worked for the Wool Commission and qualified for a soldier’s settlement at Bobinawarrah East, a speck on the map southeast of Wangaratta in the Great Dividing Range area. This was Ned Kelly country and several of his artifacts have been found there at Bobinawarrah, not far from Glenrowan, Kelly’s last stand. Dennis ...
  • March 12, 2014Matt Sutton
    Getting to Know: Matt Sutton Matthew was born in the Sydney suburb of Cronulla – famous for its beaches – and took all his schooling there. He started in on-air radio broadcasting and moved around a lot, working in Goulburn, Dubbo, the Gold Coast, Hobart, Adelaide, Sunshine Coast, and 3 ½ years in Brisbane at B105 FM. About three years ago, he backpacked by car across Canada and became infatuated with the country. In London, Ontario, he worked in a bar for six months. Back in Oz, Matt received a job offer from Winnipeg. He accepted and has been here almost a year. You ...
  • March 12, 2014Geoff and Marian Ashworth
    Getting to Know: Geoff and Marian Ashworth As reported in last month’s issue of the Yarn, our Australia Day and Waitangi Day celebration was well attended by more than 40 members and friends. Geoff and Marian were among them, and signed up as new members of the Club. Geoff was born in Perth, WA, and the family farmed at York, just east of Perth. He went to school there from primary to junior high. They then moved to Bunbury, south of Perth, to complete high school. He joined the Main Roads Department (Perth) as a cadet draftsman and was with them for 25 ...
  • October 8, 2013Toby and Jennifer Elson
    Even though Toby has been a DUCW member for only a few months, his association with the Club goes back several years to our Folklorama pavilion in 2004. His parents from Australia were visiting Winnipeg at that time, and attended our show with him. He has had an oblique interest in the Club ever since. Toby was born in Adelaide and attended Brighton Primary School and then took his high school at Westminster School. From there, he earned a B.Comm. at University of Adelaide, and a Chartered Accountant designation in the three years he was working with KPMG Adelaide. After a ...
  • October 8, 2013Wayne Dietrich
    My interview with Wayne had just started when it appeared to me that he was (in my words) a “techie” and also had an interesting introduction into the Down Under Club. Here’s his story: Wayne grew up in Winnipeg, and attended Daniel McIntyre H.S. In 1982 he travelled to Australia and spent 6 months travelling to all the major cities and through the outback to Alice Springs and Ayers Rock. He took a 1 year Telecommunication Technician course at Red River College. For the next 10 years he worked for Northern Telecom on phone systems equipment, circuit boards, etc. They had plants ...
  • October 8, 2013Wendy and Darryl Shave
    Like many DUCW members, the Shaves have travelled the world – a lot! Wendy comes from the Waihi area of New Zealand, on the North Island’s east coast, south of Auckland. She attended Waihi School from primary to high school, and Hamilton Polytechnic for a three-year course in marketing. It was then off to UK for three years of working and travelling – Europe, South Africa, Egypt, Turkey and Morocco. Once back in NZ (Auckland this time) she worked two years in marketing. Wendy was attracted back to UK, and went from there to South America – Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia where ...
  • October 8, 2013Laurie Morris
    Though Laurie was born in Canada, she holds dual Citizenship with New Zealand. She was born in Brockville, Ontario, and took her elementary schooling in Maynard and Prescott. Laurie was on a holiday in New Zealand about 30 years ago when she subsequently met a kiwi and married where she resided for almost a decade. In December 2011, Laurie went back to NZ for a month. She was in Christchurch when earthquakes hit again. She was also in Kekerengu, Papatowai, Invercargil and Queenstown. Not all quakes are felt but it made the front page of the Christchurch Press. She joined the DUCW in 2007. Laurie ...
  • October 8, 2013Ian and Catherine Bowering
    Interviews for these articles are generally by phone, but when the Bowerings were contacted they felt the personal visit would be necessary. So that was arranged and shortly into our discussions it became clear that their story was complicated, and at times, poignant. See if you agree. Ian was born in Melbourne, Australia, and when he was young the family operated a seasonal milk bar and general store for six years at Rye, a seaside resort town south of Melbourne on the Mornington Peninsula of Port Phillip Bay. They then moved to Frankston where Ian attended high school and worked as ...

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