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One of Australia’s most loved World War II veterans, Dick Payten, will be honoured this Monday with the renaming of a local reserve after him.
The City of Canterbury Bankstown will pay tribute to the local war hero in a ceremony which will be attended by his family and friends, and fittingly on the anniversary of his death, 12 months to the day.
Also attending will be some of Mr Payten’s 39 grand and great grand-children and long time friend and Kokoda veteran 97-year-old, Mr Reginald Chard.
The reserve in his honour is situated on the corner of Miller Road and Hume Highway at Villawood and is part of Remembrance Driveway which has a monument dedicated to Dick’s beloved 7th Division.
Mr Payten was a true hero, having fought in the Middle East and in Papua New Guinea in World War II, and became the long-time president of the 7th Australian Division Association, which was a driving force behind the development of memorials and commemorations at the reserve.
Canterbury-Bankstown Mayor Khal Asfour said the naming of the reserve was tinged with both sadness and joy.
“While we are unveiling the naming of this Reserve in his memory, it is also the anniversary of his death, just 12 months ago and just weeks away from what would have been his 100th birthday,” Mayor Asfour said.
“Dick’s exploits are legendary… from his repeated attempts to join the armed forces, to serving in the Middle East and then returning home, only to be sent to Papua New Guinea.
“He dedicated his life to the memory of his fallen comrades and for the betterment of the loved ones they left behind.”
4/03/2021 1:20 PM