Ride patron is Major General The Honourable Michael Jeffery AC, AO(Mil), CVO, MC (Ret’d), the 24th Governor-General of Australia (2003-2008) and the 30th Governor of Western Australia (1993-2000). WA-born and a graduate of the Royal Military College, Duntroon. MAJGEN Jeffery served in the Malayan Emergency and the Vietnam War before going on to command the Perth-based Special Air Service Regiment, the Army’s 1st Division, the first Director of the Army's Special Action Forces and Deputy Chief of General Staff. After retiring from the military in 1993 he accepted Chairmanship of FDI, Outcomes Australia and Soils for Life along with patronages of a number of other not-for-profit organisations.
May 12-August 26, 2016 from Hanoi to Singapore via Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia with welcome events being staged at Australia’s Embassies or High Commissions in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.
September 5-November 20, 2016 from Perth to the steps of Sydney Opera House, with welcome and media events planned for Kings Park and the SAS Regiment in Perth, the National War Memorial in Adelaide, Parliament House in Melbourne and the War Memorial and Government House in Canberra on Remembrance Day, November 11 as well as a range country towns compliments of local RSL sub-branches and councils. Welcome activities at Sydney Opera House include a parachute jump by the Army’s Red Beret Parachute Team and other activities.
Documentary & Media
Media events are being staged in locations right along the route and footage is being shot for regular blogs on the documentary website at www.thelongridehome.com.au and a documentary on the entire 10,00km, six month ordeal.
The Long Ride Home brings back the Australian flag which is to be symbolic of the Latin phrase nemo resideo, or "Leave no one behind". Either those who have suffered death, or physical and/or psychological trauma shall not be left behind or forgotten.
Australians are world leaders in the support and care of our military veterans who through military conflicts have suffered death, or physical and/or psychological trauma. Setting the global benchmark standards for Recognition, Prevention, Care and Cure for our afflicted Defence personnel.
To create awareness, educate and motivate the Australian public to achieve support and care for our military veterans who have suffered death, or physical and/or psychological trauma through military service to our country.
This support and care extends to the families and communities that are effected through the death of their veterans and especially to the ongoing debilitating effects of their physical disability and psychological trauma such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). There is a strong focus on boosting awareness for the Recognition, Care, Cure and Prevention strategies for psychological trauma.
We seek to secure funding to support our primary objective. To support our operational capabilities to create awareness, educate and motivate the Australian public. To support causes that align and improve the Recognition, Prevention, Care and Cure of military conflict disabilities.
Lead by elite ex SAS troopers, highly accomplished national and international co-ordinators, advisors and support teams.
Join and partner with the successful 'spirit and honour' of the elite SAS "Who Dares Wins" in The Long Ride Home from Vietnam to Australia 10,000 Km ride in 2016 to support those who have defended us.
LAURIE 'TRUCK' SAMS
Lead Rider Vietnam to Australia 10,000km
Former warrant officer with the Australian Special Air Service Regiment (SASR). Truck served in Vietnam and has 21 years’ service in the Australian Defence Force.
Star of Courage (Civilian Award), Australian Active Service medal clasp Vietnam War, The Vietnam Medal, Australian Service Medal 1942-75 for service in Papua New Guinea, Australian Service Medal 1975 Clasp SE Asia, Australian Sporting Medal (Civilian Honour and Award), Australian Services Defence Medal (for 21 years’ service), Australian Defence Medal, The Vietnamese Campaign Medal and The Infantry Combat Badge.
Skydiving and Parachuting Achievements
Laurie was team leader for the Army Parachute Team (Red Berets) and member of United States Army Parachute Demonstration & Competition Team (The Golden Knights) and inducted into their Hall of Fame and was a member of The United States Navy Parachute Team. Truck has completed 5,645 parachute jumps, was a World Championship Bronze Medallist, 11 times Australian Parachute Champion and an Australian Team member at six World Parachuting Championships including being Team Captain. Truck was a member of the International Seoul Olympic Skydiving Exhibition Team (SOSET) that jumped into the Seoul Olympic Stadium as part of the opening ceremony in 1988. Truck became an amputee losing his leg saving the life of a civilian for which he was awarded the Star of Courage.
Remembrance Expeditions and Rides
In 2005 under the patronage of the then Governor General of Australia His Excellency Major General The Honourable Mike Jeffery AC, AO (mil), CVO, MC (retd). Laurie led another successful expedition along the Thai Burma Death Railway taking two former SAS soldiers.
In 2002 under the patronage of the then Defence Minister, later Prime Minister of Malaysia Dr Mohamad Mahatir Laurie led an expedition of three Trekkers to:
1. retrace his father’s* footsteps from along the full length of the death railway (315 Kms) Thailand side.
2. pay homage to all POWs and Asian labourers who died building the death railway.
3. honour those POWs still living.
4. find missing Malaysian ( for the Malaysian government ) who were never repatriated home after the war.
5. report on the journey via local media, world press and television news on the expedition.
*Laurie’s father Private William Sams (deceased) served with the Australian Infantry (2/26 Battalion) in Malaya and became a prisoner of war (POW) after being captured shortly after the fall of Singapore. He later was sent to work on the infamous Thai Burma Death Railway.
By 2014 Laurie had ridden 12,000 kms of Vietnam visiting major battle sites of the American and Australians; Long Tan, Khe Sanh, Ashau Valley, Hamburger Hill, full length of the central Highland along the Ho Chi Minh trail, Son Tay, the complete area of the Mekong Delta, and Da Nang through to the highlands along the Ho Chi Minh trail crossing the 17 parallel (during the war) to the French and Viet Minh battlefield of Dien Bien Phu (4 times) which was the deciding battle that ended 100 years of French rule. He has already completed cycling (as an amputee) from the North (Chiang Mai) to the South (Phuket) 2,400 Kms in 23 days to raise money for operation smile and the blind society of Thailand.
Wayne is a marketer and championship parachutist with more than 38 years’ experience in marketing and advertising. His Visual Design Group (www.visualdesigngroup.com) provided marketing and advertising services for the likes of BHP, Brambles Industries, CRA, Fairfax Media Group, WIN TV, Department of Defence as well as Federal, State and Local Governments.
Winner of 28 International and National Awards for Marketing, Advertising and Design Wayne is also a skier, ice skater, mountain climber, caver and parachutist, having completed more than 3000 jumps and represented Australia internationally and on demonstration descents with Laurie Sams. Email: Wayne.Larkin@thelongridehome.com.au
Assistant Event Director & Asian Leg Support Rider
Troy is an SAS veteran with 19 years in the Australian military and deployments to Somalia, East Timor, Solomon Islands, Afghanistan and Iraq before leaving to become a security consultant in South-East Asia, the Middle East, Africa, USA, South America, and the Pacific.
Troy formed his company, Lockforce Consultancy International Pty Ltd (www.lockforce.com.au) in 2006 to provide maritime security services, response management services, auditing and compliance and specialised training services to the mining, oil and gas and energy industries. Clients include the largest mining and oil and gas clients in the region. Email: Troy.Lockyer@thelongridehome.com.au
Assistant Event Director
Noel’s career in electronics, information technology and information management industry spanned 45 years with 30 years in sales and marketing. In 1972 he started parachuting and represented Australia in two World Championships in Freefall Formation Skydiving and received an Australian Sports Medal 2000 in recognition for his contribution to the sport. His fit and active life included running, bushwalking, swimming, surfing and rifle shooting. He has four children and now has many grandchildren. At age 62 he writes, swims and does model flying. Email: Noel.Rath@thelongridehome.com.au
As a National Serviceman, Bill served with 1 and 2 SAS Squadrons in Vietnam before returning to journalism with The Age, ABC, Nine Network and Herald & Weekly Times group, where he worked as a foreign correspondent based in London covering UK-Europe and Singapore covering South East Asia.
Bill left journalism to take over the PR role at the Australian Tourist Commission during the Paul Hogan era before leaving in 1993 to set up Sydney-based MG Media Communications (www.mgmedia.com.au), an award winning PR consultancy specialising in travel, tourism and lifestyle. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeff’s Warburton-based company Bigdog Software (www.bigdogsoftware.com.au) is an independent software development and integration consultancy specialising in internet and database development, network implementation, application training, data entry, and system auditing.
Clients include National Australia Bank (property asset management implementation), National Australia Bank (strategic accommodation planning) and Department of Defence (NORCOM network management application user training).
South Australia Event Coordinator
Deane is a retired Army Major currently living in Adelaide. He spent 26 years in the Army with 14 being spent in the Special Air Service Regiment, Commando’s and the US Navy Seal Team 1. On leaving the Army Deane had various employment including Private Secretary to the Governor of Western Australia, Protocol Officer for the City of Perth and Functions and Bash Manager for the WA Variety Club. Email: Deane.Pye@thelongridehome.com.au
Dr GARRY NEWMAN PhD
Victoria Event Coordinator
Born Wangaratta Victoria, educated Tallangatta Victoria, primary and secondary, enlisted in the army straight out of school, served in infantry, armour and the Special Air Service Regiment (SASR), climbing and freefall troop, HQ, Support Squadron, Training Aids, discharged 1980, northern territory police 1980 to 1984, retired ill health injury, attended La Trobe University Bendigo, BA (social science, majored in economics, politics, anthropology and development studies, Honours at Deakin University B.Lett (Hons), University of the Southern Philippines PhD.
Worked from 1989 for International Pharmacticals based in the Philippines and other large multinational companies in the Philippines, travelled to Australia, New Zealand and the world with the Philippine Business delegation in 1995 with President Ramos. Returned to Australia in 1996, since then has been semi-retired and is on a few Boards in Australia, New Zealand and the Philippines. Email: Garry.Newman@thelongridehome.com.au
Driver & Support Australian Leg
Terry spent 24 years in the RAAF from 1970, initially serving as a pilot on the C-47 Dakota with the Aircraft Research and Development Unit (ARDU). Subsequent postings were with 35 and 38 Squadrons flying the DHC-4 Caribou throughout Australia and Papua New Guinea, and with 36 and 37 Squadrons flying the C-130 Hercules on domestic and international tasks. Operational roles on the Hercules spanned humanitarian missions in Vietnam immediately prior to the withdrawal from Saigon in 1975, to supporting Australia’s participation in the Gulf War in 1991.
Terry also earned his military parachute wings and military freefall qualification in 1981, before completing two postings with the Army Parachute Training School.
After leaving the Air Force, Terry joined the Public Service within the Defence Materiel Organisation in Canberra, working with Australian industry and overseas manufacturers in support of major Defence acquisition projects, before retiring in 2014.
Asian Leg Support Rider
Giles has 24 years of Military and Security Industry experience. He spent time as a member of the Australian Special Air Service Regiment (SAS). He spent four years residing in South America developing and operating security systems for the mining industry. He has worked extensively throughout the Middle East, including running security for the UN in the southern region of Afghanistan as their Regional Security Officer. He has comprehensive experience in security function auditing and security threat and risk assessments for various industries including Marine/Land Oil and Mineral, Logistics, Executive Protection.
Giles is Director of Security at Lockforce Consultancy International Pty Ltd and is a security consultant specialising in maritime and land based security and critical infrastructure reviews.
Asian Leg Support Rider
Matt has over 21 years military experience, including service in the Australian Special Forces (SAS) and has operated and consulted in southeast Asia, the Middle East, Africa, North America and the Pacific region. Matt has also had over two years’ experience in the capacity of Australian Government security, in the role of Maritime Security Liaison Officer (MSLO). He performed the roles of a counter terrorist tactical team leader and a Special Forces patrol commander whilst on operations in East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Matt is Operations Director at Lockforce Consultancy International Pty Ltd and extensive knowledge of maritime and land based security, plus vast experience in Emergency and Crisis management.
Australia Leg Support Rider
Mat has 11 years military experience which includes service in the Australian Special Air Service Regiment (SASR) with deployments to East Timor, Solomon Islands, Afghanistan and Iraq. After leaving the Australian Military, Mat worked for two years as a Team leader for a Personal Security Detail (PSD) in Iraq with International Aid organisations for the reconstruction of Iraq. Mat then moved into consulting in Australia, Southeast Asia and the Pacific region.
Mat is the Director of Audit and Compliance for Lockforce Consultancy International Pty Ltd and has extensive knowledge in business continuity, crisis and emergency management, HSE compliance and management system development. Gaining formal academic qualifications in Security and Business Continuity.