a Warm Farewell to the Year of the Veteran
A Tale of Two Cities; and a Warm Farewell to the Year of the Veteran
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Caption: A Tale of Two Cities; and a Warm Farewell to the Year of the Veteran
In Christmas week, a cheque for $7,600 was handed over to the Royal New Zealand Returned And Services Association's welfare fund (based in Wellington). The cheque was a 'Christmas present' for New Zealand's returned servicemen and women from Sentinel (New Zealand's leading home equity release company). In Auckland, about the same time, WWII veteran John Graham (84) would have been 'taking tea' in the gazebo he bought for $7,600 on Trademe (sold by Sentinel) - to place in Ranfurly Veterans' Home and Hospital grounds. This was, effectively, John Graham's 'Christmas present' to his mates at Ranfurly. The sale and purchase came about because Sentinel sponsored a garden in honour of the RSA at Ellerslie International Garden Show in November. Sentinel's heritage garden was a tribute to the Year of the Veteran. It won silver, and at its heart was a beautiful Victorian gazebo. John Graham visited the garden, saw the gazebo and thought it would complement the historic 1903 Ranfurly Veterans' Home (built specially for returned services). He persuaded an administrator to help him bid for it on Trademe in December and despite heavy bidding, he won - and Sentinel donated the proceeds to the RNZRSA.
So, two 'Christmas presents' were given in two cities, in a warm conclusion to the Year of the Veteran.
John Campbell, President (left), accepts the cheque on behalf of the RNZRSA during Christmas week from Boyd Klap, Chairman of Sentinel.