Jim Vergeer joined the Navy in April 1964. The Vergeers migrated from Rotterdam, Holland, in 1954, Jan and Ellie and the four young boys, who would all join the Navy. Jim rose to become a LSATC before leaving after his 9 years, to return to his home state Western Australia where he worked for Telecom as an Electrician in Fremantle. A few years later he returned to NSW, living in Bomaderry. A pretty good basketball player, he was a passionate supporter of the Bomaderry Tigers Aussie Rule footie team. Jim the elder of twins, died suddenly on December 24th 1991.

Many a time spent down the wets after work with him and his three brothers. A good friend, I stayed at his flat in Fremantle a few times when home to WA on leave.

Also played in the Sandgropers Basketball team in the Shoalhaven with him. Best memories, playing ‘Trees’, you start walking back to base, after a night out, a car zooms past, a possible lift, you not interested, you stand on one leg on the side of the road arms stretched at weird angles and yell out “trees”. Crazy days.

Returning from a night out with his twin brother Con, we return to the Guard House to collect our cards. A security officer, ‘Durps’ Underwood is on, “back again, Santa Claus” he says. We find out later Jim had returned earlier from a night out, drunk, he calls ‘durps’ Father Christmas.

I owe a great gratitude to the whole Vergeer family, but thanks again Jim.

Robert Wood