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Category: Army today/RAR

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Subject to Crown copyright. Do not copy or use without approval

Raised 13th November 1967 at Woodside SA
Battalion colour

Beech Brown (BCC 69)

Battalion nickname .
Battalion march Pass Me By Click to hear a small selection
Current home Disbanded
Mascot A Merino Ram, L/Cpl John Macarthur IV

Tours of duty overseas.

Viet Nam  November 1968 . . .November 1969

A Brief History of The 9th Battalion

9RAR was the youngest battalion of The Royal Australian Regiment. LTCOL A.L. (Alby) Morrison formed the battalion on 13th November 1967 at Woodside, in South Australia and completed its raising and training in nine months. The unit left Australia for service in Vietnam, fully trained and operational, in November 1968.

In Australia the battalion trained in Woodside, Cultana and the Flinders Ranges in South Australia. Specialist platoons of the battalion trained in New South Wales. All soldiers underwent the compulsory individual training in Canungra and the battalion successfully completed its testing exercise in Shoalwater Bay in Queensland.

In addition, in order to meet deadlines for the time of departure for Vietnam, the battalion found it necessary to complete, in unit lines, the basic-to-corps training of 140 of its national servicemen. As a result, these national servicemen were trained and allotted to companies some seven weeks earlier than if they had followed the normal training system. It was a very valuable saving of time.

During its tour of duty in South Vietnam the battalion took part in twelve main operations over four provinces. In broad terms these covered: -

  • operations involving the location and destruction of major enemy force groups and their supply bases;
  • operations aimed at denying enemy Main Force elements access to large installations in the Bien Hoa and Xuyen Moc areas;
  • pacification tasks - in conjunction with local authorities and South Vietnamese forces - to train local forces to protect the civilian population and to isolate the enemy from the population.

9RAR continued on operations until it left South Vietnam on 28 November 1969. It had many heavy contacts with the enemy during its tour of duty and sadly, 35 of its members were killed and over 150 were wounded in action. The battalions service in Vietnam resulted in the award of one DSO, two MCís, seven MMís and eight MIDís to members of the battalion.

On return to Australia in December 1969 the battalion reformed at Enoggera under the command of LTCOL E.R. Phillip. 9RAR was the "next to go" again when Australiaís commitment in South Vietnam finished.

The battalion remained in Enoggera until it was linked with 8RAR to form 8/9RAR on 31 October 1973. Sadly, on Friday 13th June 1997, 8/9RAR was disbanded. On Wednesday 17th June 1997 the former CO Albie Morrison, the President of the 9RAR Association (NSW), a representative from the 9RAR Association (QLD), several foundation members of 9RAR and many members of 8RAR paid a final tribute to the Queens and Regimental Colours of both battalions before they were laid up at  Corps Museum at the Infantry Centre, Singleton NSW.

 

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