By GISELA HORNER
I have written many stories about Friends of Bella Vista Farm.
Ron Ray has appeared in Hills to Hawkesbury Community News in July 2019 and February 2020.
The reason I’m writing about him this time is that on June 23rd this year, the Western Sydney University made him a Community Fellow in recognition of his volunteering contribution in the Western Sydney region.
Ron Ray says: “I see the need to stay active and be involved in preserving history for future generations”.
The organisations for which Ron Ray volunteers all have an historic connection in one form or another. Bella Vista Farm is one which Ron joined 16 years ago. With his army background, he and a volunteer group from the NSW Corps of Marines dress in 18 th century scarlet livery and demonstrate drill and weaponry during special events at the Farm.
He is a guide at the Australian National Maritime Museum, Darling Harbour taking visitors on board the Onslow, an Oberon submarine and the Vampire, a Daring Class Destroyer.
He felt it important to bring to life stories of historical events at the Museum and co-founded the Speakers’ Group. Up until last year, they were conducting 100 talks per year.
Ron’s subjects are Bass and Flinders; Cook and the Endeavour; the Emden Battle and the Midget submarine attack in Sydney Harbour in 1942. From 2009 Ron has been conducting tours for The Sydney Harbour Federation Trust to Cockatoo Island, North Head and Middle Head.
He also belongs to The Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company. As its title suggests, the core purpose of the RAAHC is to promote the significance of Australia’s artillery, its history and heritage.