Duo recognised OAM honours for district residents

June 13, 2018

John Hanlon has been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

Popular all over town: Trevor Noonan celebrates with the students of Cobram Anglican Grammar School after receiving Queens Birthday honours.

Two Cobram-Barooga residents will receive a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for their outstanding contributions to the community of Cobram and to the lives of ex-servicemen and women respectively.

Trevor Noonan and John Hanlon were both successful after being nominated for the Queen’s Birthday Honours List and will attend a ceremony in September to be formally recognised for their efforts.

The OAM is given for service worthy of particular recognition.

Mr Noonan spent 10 years on the Cobram Shire Council in the 1970s and served as shire president, a period he described as ‘‘very interesting’’.

He is also a life member of Cobram Barooga Apex Club and regards being one of four commissioners for local government that joined the shires of Nathalia, Tungamah, Numurkah, Yarrawonga and Cobram together to form Moira Shire as a highlight of his life.

He was also the national chairman for Showcase Jewellers for six years, has his own store in town and has been a member of the local Rotary club since the 1980s.

Mr Noonan said arguably his biggest passion was Cobram Anglican Grammar School, where is still the chairman of the school council. He was involved with the planning of the school before it officially opened in 2000.

Mr Noonan said it had never been difficult to do things for the town he loved so dearly.

‘‘It’s a great town and without the support of my wife and family none of this would have been possible and they have always been right beside me supporting me,’’ he said.

‘‘It is really nice to be recognised for doing things throughout your life, but you just do them as you go along.

‘‘I have probably got a lot more out if it than I have put in because you meet some wonderful people.’’

John Hanlon only moved to Cobram from Melbourne last year to retire and has done a power of work for former defence force members.

He worked as a volunteer at the RSL state branch in Melbourne for almost 18 years, with his primary responsibility being to help organise the Anzac Day march.

‘‘It was terrific. It wasn’t something I ever thought I would get involved in. It was a great challenge but it was a lot of fun in many instances and very rewarding on Anzac Day when the veterans got their opportunity to march and remember their comrades,’’ Mr Hanlon said.

He is also a life member of the Royal Victorian Regiment Association and served as president.

He volunteered with the Victorian branch of the RSL and currently operates as a volunteer for the Cobram-Barooga RSL Sub-Branch.

One of his prouder achievements was helping set up a scholarship for junior leaders out of the armed forces to go overseas.

Mr Hanlon has a strong personal connection to the armed forces, having served in the Army Reserve for 25 years without ever being deployed for combat.

‘‘The army was a great time in my life. You get to experience things most people don’t, which was fantastic,’’ he said.

He said his phone had been abuzz since news broke on Monday that he had received the honour.

‘‘It’s a great thrill and honour to be recognised by your country,’’ Mr Hanlon said.

‘‘It’s not an individual thing, though. You only get there by virtue of having good people working with you and having a good family that supports you.’’

In total, 1007 Australians were formally recognised on Monday for outstanding contributions in public life.

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