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Help keep the Legacy promise alive

BADGE OF HONOUR: Grafton Legacy appeals chairman Ron Shoebridge shows off a badge in readiness for Legacy Week. PHOTO: ADAM HOURIGAN
BADGE OF HONOUR: Grafton Legacy appeals chairman Ron Shoebridge shows off a badge in readiness for Legacy Week. PHOTO: ADAM HOURIGAN

RON Shoebridge is an ex-serviceman who has taken it upon himself to care for the families of his fallen comrades.

"It all began back in World War One," Mr Shoebridge said.

"A soldier was dying on the battlefield and asked his mate to look after his family."

From there, the Legacy organisation was formed.

Volunteers became known as Legatees and would act as a father figure for families who had lost their dads, brothers and husbands in the war.

These days Legatees provide guidance and support for war widows and their children.

Legacy Week is the only time of the year fundraising for the organisation is conducted and volunteers will be selling badges, pens, wristbands and bears at countless locations across the Clarence Valley.

This Sunday will mark the first day of Legacy Week, with a service of remembrance being held at Grafton Memorial Park from noon.

Grafton Legacy has 23 legatees and there are about 400 war widows in the Valley.

Mr Shoebridge joined the Army in 1964 and served until 1985, and the Grafton Legacy appeals chairman said volunteering gave him a sense of gratification.

"I've been with Legacy ever since I left the Army," he said.

"It gives me satisfaction to know we're looking after families who need support."

This year Legacy celebrates 90 years of service throughout Australia to war widows and their children.

Grafton Legacy received its Charter in 1953 and has cared for the welfare of war widows and their children from that time.



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