Vale Reg Selwyn

Reg Selwyn - ANZAC Day 2010
ANZAC Day 2010

Reginald Arthur Selwyn (Reg) Born in Bairnsdale to Lillian and Maurice Selwyn, son of a blacksmith and one of eight brothers and sisters. As with many of his age, Reg had basic schooling but even so he was extremely good at English and maths. On recounting those school days Reg said that together with some other of his siblings, they would ride the horse to school. There were other times he had to walk the four miles.

From seventeen years old Reg worked at various places beginning at the APM, followed by the water authority clearing the creeks and waterways. Then with his brother Maurie, they started a trucking business before Reg began working for Nestles milk factory, progressing his way up to head mechanic and remaining there for most of his working life, finishing at Hazelwood Power Station.

It was during the war that Reg and Jean married in Rosedale. When he came back from service they moved to Hazelwood Flats, now Hazelwood dam, then moved to Yinnar for many more years, spent a few years in Lucknow then came back to Churchill. They had a long and very happy marriage. Reg was Dad to Terry, Jill, Ann and Raelene, and father-in-law to Lee and Joe. He achieved the status of grandad to thirteen, great grandad to twenty-six and great great grandad to two grandsons.

Reg Selwyn - an avid Richmond Supporter
An avid Richmond Supporter

Reg loved the bush, camping, fishing, shooting, he was a hunter gatherer and a great gardener, often supplying family and friends with lots of home grown vegies. For a long time Reg had a boat and he would take his family over to Corner Inlet fishing. Reg never needed a lot. As a young man Reg did boxing, played cricket and football passionately following them throughout his life. He was a devoted Richmond fan as his house, decorated with Richmond memorabilia, showed. He was an active member of his community - proud and hardworking RSL member at both Morwell and Yinnar, Yinnar fire brigade captain, president Yinnar hall committee, Adviser to Young farmers and later in life other community organisations. Reg had a zest for life, taking every opportunity to live life to the fullest. He was often off on an adventure and in his early days after retirement he and Jean would take off for months visiting different parts of Australia. The family all remember the slide nights when they came home. Reg was proud of the life he had lived, proud of his war service, proud of the way he looked after Jean till she passed. Raelene said she was very proud of her dad - “Dad was satisfied with his lot in life”

Reg’s grandchildren loved and cherished him. They all remember Christmas Day at Yinnar sitting out on the front lawn after lunch, all excited waiting for Grandad to call out their name. He was surrounded by presents and not just from him and Nanna Jean but he handed out all the presents from all the aunts and uncles too. In a loud voice he would call out each name. He had as much fun giving out all the presents as they did opening them. They also went out to Martin Walker Reserve some years playing cricket and riding around on mini bikes, including Grandad. They all felt like his favourite. He took them mushrooming showing them which ones not to pick. He took them to his secret spot to catch fish and crayfish, which he still did until a few years ago when he also took his great grandchildren. Most of his grandchildren went fishing or camping with him at some stage growing up, and a couple even joined him in some other of his favourite things ... duck shooting and deer hunting.

Grandad was a great role model to us all as we saw how much he loved and supported Nanna. Many grandchildren recall taking turns helping when Nanna had her stalls at the Morwell Sunday Market and at Martin Walker Reserve. Grandad was always there. He would always help her unpack and set up, then come back at the end of the day to pack up again. After his great grandchildren came along is when Grandad started to talk more and more about his life, especially sharing his experiences during the war. He was invited to schools and Scout groups, where he would talk about what the conditions were like during the war and try to help them understand a bit more about what he experienced. I remember he’d tell me he was amazed at how many of the younger folk were interested in what he had to say.

Reg Selwyn - ANZAC Day Morwell
ANZAC Day Morwell

Anzac Day was a very special day for our family as we proudly watched our Grandad march down the Main St of Yinnar, then later years also at Morwell. Over the years he has had three generations of his family march with him at some stage. He loved that so many of the kids wanted to march with him. He knew how proud we all were of the sacrifices he made. Grandad never took anything for granted and was always so surprised and happy when many family members got up early to join him for the Dawn Service every year. Last year there were no Anzac Day services, so he was even more surprised when some of his family just turned up in the street, out the front of his house, for their own special Dawn Service with him. Family was everything to Grandad, his face just lit up and got so happy seeing his great grandchildren and it was even more so with his great great grandsons. Five generations, so many memories... he was the best Grandad in the world.