Keith Victorsen OAM, a long-standing member of the Kenmore-Moggill RSL recently celebrated his 90th birthday. Pictured is Keith and his wife Barbara with a birthday cake presented by the RSL Club made by Julie Grey.
Keith was born in Brisbane on 3rd September 1927 and attended the Coorparoo State School between 1932 and 1942. He left school at the age of 14 and commenced working at the Truth Newspaper the day Singapore fell – 15th February 1942.
At the age of 16 Keith joined the Air Training Corps for a two-year theory training course after which an automatic Air Force call up would happen. Unfortunately, two weeks before his call up was due the Americans dropped the two bombs on Japan and all call ups and recruiting for the Air Force was terminated. Following the end of the war Keith did attempt to enter the Air Force but due to recruiting restrictions limited to ex RAAF personnel and technical tradesmen, he was excluded.
Being despondent with the Air Force, Keith joined the CMF and spend most of his time at the Annerley Dudley Street Depot – Royal Australian Army Service Corp. He spent six years with the CMF reaching the rank of Staff Sergeant, qualifying for the rank of Warrant Officer and missing out on securing a Commission due to the failure of one subject – Army Tactics. Keith says: “that his view on tactics and his colonel instructor’s view widely differed” – hence no Commission.
In 1947 Keith joined a new company -Equitable Probate and General Insurance Company and continued on with the company for 45 years working in Brisbane, Sydney (1961) and South Australia on a temporary basis.
Following Keith’s retirement, he returned to Brisbane and took up voluntary work as a guide in Government House working for both Quentin Bryce and Penelope Wensley. He did this for seven years while concurrently volunteering as secretary for the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) for some 13 years. At the age of 90, Keith still volunteers his services to RSUI two days per week
It was during the time Keith was volunteering at RUSI he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia – the Citation states (in part) “for services to the Royal United Services Institute and veterans”.
Keith has stated that he thoroughly enjoyed his time at RUSI and made mention of the three wonderful presidents he had the pleasure of working with, they were: Major Generals John Hartley and Kevin Cooke and Group Captain Ross Clelland.
Everyone at Kenmore-Moggill RSL wishes you a very happy 90th birthday and wish you and Barbara well.