Surname: Armstrong
Christian Names: Gordon William
Country: Australia
State or Province: QLD
City or Town: Curumbin
Service: RAN
Case Notes:

Gordon William ARMSTRONG is the Secretary of the Currumbin Returned Services League on the Gold Coast and is another example of an Executive of an RSL Branch not setting an example in regard to the wearing of tin medals.

The RSL Branches seemed to be infested with members and committee members wearing tin medals and un-official foreign awards not accepted by the Australian Government with their official medals awarded. The RSL itself has distributed an instruction to that effect.

But committee members and especially those holding an executive position on the committee totally disregard this instruction and continue to do so even though a number have been exposed on our website.

Gordon ARMSTRONG served in the Royal Australian Navy both in the Far East Strategic Reserve (FESR) and carrying out escort duties accompanying the troopship HMAS Sydney to Vung Tau, South Vietnam during the Vietnam War.

He did two trips on HMAS Stuart and his Vietnam service is below.

You will see that the tours are counted in days from the time the ship left port to the time it returned to port. In actual fact on the first trip HMAS Stuart dropped anchor in Vung Tau Harbour at 0700 hours and departed at 1430 hours on 30 May 1967. On the second trip, the same ship dropped anchor at 0650 hours and departed at 1430 hours on 3 February 1968. So all up he spent a total of fifteen hours and ten minutes in the Harbour of Vung Tau, not the days mentioned on his record.

At the time there were no medals awarded for service in FESR or escorting ships to Vietnam. The ex-navy members decided to make their own medals for these periods of service and they are un-official medals and referred to as TIN medals as they had to be bought. They are referred to as the FESR and VLSF Medals.


It was not till a number of years later that the Navy was awarded the Australian Service Medal clasp FESR and the Vietnam logistic and Support Medal for these periods of service.

The medals from left to right are;

Australian Active Service Medal clasp Vietnam

Vietnam Support and Logistic Medal

Australian Service Medal 45-75 clasp FESR

Australian Defence Medal

Pingat Jasa Malaysia Medal

Vietnam Logistic Support Force Medal tin

Far East Strategic Reserve Medal tin

As ARMSTRONG has been awarded official medals, those tin medals should not be worn at all with official medals. Even if official medals had not been awarded, tin or un-official foreign awards should be on the right breast.

No doubt there will be more executives from the RSL and any other Ex Service Organisations that disregard the protocols of wearing medals as laid out by Honours and Awards will be appearing on our website, so don’t be surprised when you do.

Gordon William ARMSTRONG remove those offending medals as you are showing disrespect to fellow veterans past and from present conflicts and stop trying to make out you are a hero by wearing the tin medals. You will now grace our website and if you fail to get rid of those tin medals expect to have an update made to your case page should you continue to be disrespectful.

This is published in the public interest, particularly that of the Vietnam Veteran Community. All information presented here is fact and the truth. Reports from private citizens are supported by statements of fact and statutory declarations.

Located in: Stolen Valour
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