Penrith Mayor unveils meaningful memorial plaque

Penrith Mayor unveils meaningful memorial plaque

Friday, 28 May 2021

A new reflection bench at Victoria Park, St Marys has been decorated with a plaque honouring two founders of the Penrith City Australian National Servicemen’s Association (Nashos) – a plaque that Penrith Mayor Karen McKeown OAM was proud to unveil at an event over the weekend.

Dignitaries, various Nashos representatives and members of the Penrith sub-Branch came together for the Annual National Servicemen’s Memorial Service on Sunday.

Provided by Penrith City Council, the plaque names and dedicates the seat to the late Harry Morfoot and Tom Kelly, who brought the Nashos to the Penrith region.

Cr McKeown said she was “honoured” to unveil the plaque and paid tribute on behalf of the City to Mr Morfoot and Mr Kelly, all Sub-branch members both past and present, as well as the men who made the ultimate sacrifice.  

“Our hope in dedicating this bench is that those who sit here will reflect on the debt we owe, not just to these men, but all our National Servicemen and, in particular those who lost their lives serving in overseas conflicts,” Cr McKeown said.  

“And of course, our gratitude extends to the Sub-branch for the role it plays in our community, providing support and camaraderie to its members. 

“Whether you have family members who served or are simply curious about the City’s history, I encourage residents to visit this lovely memorial and take a quiet moment to pay your respects – you may even be fortunate enough to come across a former serviceman who will share their story.”

The plaque is the final piece of a series of works completed at the St Marys site. Last year, Council added to the existing monument by installing new paving, an adjoining garden bed, adding the bench seat and with some re-turfing to freshen up the space.

Graham Larkham, Secretary of the Penrith City National Servicemen’s Association said the Nashos appreciate Council’s ongoing support.

“The idea behind the bench is for people to come and sit down, to reflect on their days and think of their comrades who have been and gone,” Mr Larkham said.

“We are gratefully indebted to the Council – from the regular gardening to the upgrade of the memorial and the new bench seat, it is all wonderful,” he said.

Information contained within this news release was correct as at Friday, 28 May 2021.