Jungle Training Wing at Tully received a visit from its legendary founder, Brigadier (retired) “Warry” George Mansford, last month.
Brigadier Mansford’s name is synonymous with the centre he founded in 1980, resonating with all Royal Australian Infantry soldiers and officers.
Having served in Korea in 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, the Malayan Emergency, Thai Border, Vietnam, New Guinea and Singapore, Brigadier Mansford raised and commanded the Army’s Battle School, now named Jungle Training Wing.
It was designed as a reminder of the rigours faced by Australian soldiers overseas in South-East Asia, providing combat training in some of the most unforgiving environments imaginable.
Officer Commanding Jungle Training Wing Major Simon Sullivan said signs of Brigadier Mansford were scattered throughout the camp and the George Mansford Mess was dedicated to him.
“His quotes adorn the walls and field classrooms as a reminder that the Jungle Training School exists to hone individual and collective skills of all ranks,” Major Sullivan said.
Brigadier Mansford spoke to Diggers about battle discipline and jungle training.
“His speech had humorous anecdotes from his time in service and was delivered with a passion and confidence that only Brigadier Mansford could do,” Major Sullivan said.
“They were his personal stories, all providing a stark reminder of the realities that come when serving within the Army and the infantry.
“Such is the overwhelming respect for this man that soldiers and officers alike still refer to him as Sir.”
Major Sullivan’s own connection to Brigadier Mansford goes back 16 years.
“Brigadier Mansford presented me with my 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment Royal Australian Infantry lanyard on graduating from Royal Military College to the corps in 2004,” he said.
Brigadier Mansford enlisted in 1951, was commissioned from the ranks in 1964 and served for four decades, retiring as a brigadier.