Harry Prosser Receives Highest RSL Honour
Well known and loved Koonwarra resident, Harry Prosser, was presented with the RSL's highest honour, the Meritorious Medal on 30 January 2007 by the CEO of the RSL in Victoria, Mr Mike Annett, at the AGM of the Meeniyan Sub Branch of the RSL.
Not many peoople receive this medal. To begin with, to be eligible you have to be a life member of the RSL and have given 25 years' outstanding service. Harry has given 50!
He has just finished as Secretary, a role he has held for 39 years. He is a life member of both the Meeniyan RSl and the District 41 Board being the only person to hold the latter honour. He has also been both Secretary and President of that Board.
His hard work earned him the title "Citizen of the Year" on Australia Day in 2006 in Meeniyan.
Harry was born on a farm at Glen Alvie and went to primary school at Krowera and Korumburra. Before going to school he would help milk, ride a big old white horse to school and back and once again help with the milking and feeding of the calves. He went on to Korumburra High School, leaving at the age of 13 and a half with his Merit Certificate and then went home to work on the farm.
He was nearly 19 when he joined the Air Force on 27 July 1941 to serve Australia during World War II. He chuckes when recalling this saying, "I had seven sisters, five of them redheads, so I joined up". Harry was posted to various points in Australia before serving in the South Pacific. He ended the war with a Sutherland Squadron.
He came home in March 1946 and in June that year, married the girl next door - Marje Alexander. They had known each other from a very young age.
That was also the year that Harry joined the RSL, initially as part of the Korumburra Sub Branch and then Meeniyan in 1964 when they moved to Koonwarra. The RSL means a lot to Meeniyan as reflected in the support given to the town's annual Anzac Day commemoration, an event revived by the sub branch with Harry's encouragement. Although he is no longer Secretary, Harry's extensive RSL knowledge is still available to the sub branch through his role as an Advisor.
He might be heading for his mid 80s and his 61st wedding anniversary, but Harry Prosser is living out the RSL motto: "Serving Still". Harry still visits every house in the area and sits outside the Koonwarra Farmers Market to collect money for Remembrance Day and Anzac Day - and it doesn't matter what the weather is like he will still collect to help Legacy.
This new award adds to five other awards and certificates that have resulted from a lifetime of dedicated service to the RSL. Congratulations Harry and well done!
Harry - we are so very proud of you for all you have done for the RSL and both you and Marje for your contributions within the Koonwarra community for over 40 years. It is always great to see your smiling faces.