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Army March 1, 2012
Cpl Nick Wiseman
CPL James Rowe, of B Coy
5/6RVR, is the latest recipient of
the company's Greg Sher Award,
presented in honour of former
member Pte Gregory Sher, killed in
Afghanistan in 2009.
The idea for the award origi-
nated from two of Pte Sher's mates
at B Coy, Cpl Dean Anderson and
LCpl Ryan Aitken, with the award
presented at their annual dining in
night by a member of Pte Sher's
Cpl Anderson said Pte Sher
had been an active member of the
unit before undertaking commando
selection and was sorely missed.
"Out of respect for those who
knew Pte Sher, we contacted mem-
bers of the unit who were currently
deployed to the Solomon Islands to
have a local carver create a plaque
in his honour," Cpl Anderson said.
So far the annual award has
gone to Pte Alexander Wilding,
LCpl Nicholas Stebbins and Cpl
To be selected for the award,
members of B Coy must perform
to a high standard throughout the
year in normal unit training as well
as specialised fitness tests, in rec-
ognition of Pte Sher's exceptional
Pte Sher's father, Felix, said it
was an honour to see his son recog-
nised in such a way.
"It was so unexpected to have
5/6RVR implement an award that
is so enduring and honourable to
him," Mr Sher said.
"He loved the Army and it was a
large part of his life."
Pte Sher's family was invited
to the unit's mess for a Tuesday
parade night to see the award on
On his first visit to the unit, Mr
Sher bought the soldiers a round of
drinks in appreciation.
Annual award to
honour top soldier
Cpl Nick Wiseman
VICTORIA Cross recipient Cpl
Benjamin Roberts-Smith, of SASR,
tested out the Australian War
Memorial's Anzacs on the Western
Front battlefield guide during a visit
to the front late last year.
Authored by Dr Peter Pedersen,
head of research at the war memo-
rial, the book guides readers through
the battles fought by the Anzacs from
1916-1918 and features fully illustrated
maps and images from the memorial's
Cpl Roberts-Smith said the book's
vivid descriptions of the battles allowed
him to orientate himself to the sites and
see how they looked during the cam-
"You could really appreciate the way
the battles were fought and the tactical
plans the junior Australian officers used
to fight the Germans," Cpl Roberts-
Visiting the battlefields gave Cpl
Roberts-Smith the opportunity to better
understand what his relatives who had
fought there had seen and experienced.
"I had four relatives land at
Gallipoli, the two who were able after
that went on to fight in France on the
front," Cpl Roberts-Smith said.
"Thanks to Dr Pedersen I had a copy
of the book and can speak from experi-
ence in saying it is an excellent work."
Each chapter covers the important
tactical milestones passed along the
way and explains how the Australian
Imperial Force and the New Zealand
Guide put to test
VC recipient trials war memorial's new book on the Western Front
Expeditionary Force evolved to meet
the war's changing demands.
The book also features the personal
accounts and comprehensive knowledge
of Dr Pedersen who, having visited the
battlefields several times since 1976,
said he had seen them change dramati-
cally over the years.
"When I visited Gallipoli for the
first time in 1981 for Anzac Day, there
were five people including myself," Dr
"Compare that with Anzac com-
Anzacs on the Western Front is available from
bookstores and the Australian War Memorial
Good read: Australian War Memorial head of research Dr Peter Pedersen
(left) and VC recipient Cpl Benjamin Roberts-Smith launch the AWM's
battlefield guide to the Western Front in Canberra. Photo by Cpl Nick Wiseman
Top honour: Cpl James Rowe (left) is presented the Greg Sher award
by Greg's brother Steven and Cpl Dean Anderson at the 5/6RVR mess.
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