Gudday from Derwombat.

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This is me at the May Day Dinner 2015. It was a privilege to be given the Spanner Award by the Union movement for the promotion of the ideals of International Workers Day.
The Blog OLD GUV LEGENDS  is  Dedicated to all the Workers of the South Australian Government  Printing Office  employed over its 130 year History.
Gudday, my name is Rod Parham. I live in Adelaide, South Australia.
I was born on Sunday, 16 November, 1947, in Adelaide.
That makes me an Aussie baby boomer, eldest child of Mabel and Bill Parham.
My sister Sue was born in 1956 and today has three children.
For about 4 or 5 years we lived with my Grandmother Rhoda.
She was a widow, independent and worked very hard cleaning factories of a night time to get by and a wonderful grandmother.
On Dad’s side there was my Grandpa “Pop,” a hard man, staunch protestant and union delegate for the Transport Workers Union.
He was also regarded as one of the best transport drivers in Adelaide.
My Dad Albert (always known as Bill) served in the South Pacific with the AIF (Australian Infantry Forces) during WWII as a Warrant Officer.
He never liked to talk about the War as he had lost a lot of good mates.
He became a Salesman for the printing firm Sands and McDougall after being de-mobbed.
Mabel or May (my Mum) was a saint, compassionate and generous to a fault. She had done factory work during the War.
Sadly, Mum died suddenly in 1983 of severe diabetes, aged only 63 years.
We moved to South Plympton in the Adelaide suburbs in the early 1950s where I attended Forbes Primary School.
My father gave me the nickname of “Caxton” after William Caxton, the first successful British Printer.
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Photo: In my fourth year of apprenticeship.
I began my printing apprenticeship in 1965 with National Paper Industries and was later transferred to Griffin Press in 1968 to finish my apprenticeship. 
I started as a hot metal Compositor at the Old Guv Printing Office at King William Road in July 1973, which was 6 months before they moved the Office to the Netley Complex, Marion Road.
It was in the final days of the old hot metal technology.
Although it was only ten years I Ioved my time at The Guv, the people were fun to be with and that wonderful atmosphere and smell of a printing office will live with me forever. Yes, I love print!
In 1983, I said goodbye to the Guv and became an Elected Organiser with the Printing and Kindred Industries Union (South Australian Branch).
A few months later I got married  to Esther and it only lasted nine years.

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Photo: My daughter Candace in 2016.
Our divorce was very amicable and now I live with my 32 year old son  (Danny) and my daughter (Candace) is only a 10 minutes drive away.
They are great children and so is my seven year old Grandson (Seamus).
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 Photo: That’s me on the left with the Australian and World famous environmentalist and union activist Jack Mundey. A Real fair dinkum Legend.
Rod Parham

10 thoughts on “Gudday from Derwombat.

    • Thanks Miriam,
      I had a lovely Auntie called Miriam, I don’t think it is a common name in Oz, But neither is Rodney (Rod), most of them are baby boomers, I was named after a British WWII warship, HMS Rodney. I think it assisted in the sinking of the German ‘Bismarck’ back in those dark times.
      Keep well and safe over Christmas Miriam.
      Regards, Rod

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    • Hi Rod, yes Miriam is not a common name, it’s actually Jewish for Mary (though I’m not Jewish!). Interesting history about your name. Enjoy the Christmas season with your family. Warm regards. M

      Liked by 1 person

  1. My father Ron Lahiff worked at the SA Government Printing Department in King William street and at Netley. He was a proof reader and a compositor before that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi all,
    I was a childhood neighbour of Warren Pietsch and spent a lot of time with him as a youngster. As often happens when you marry and leave home you lose touch. I was trying to find him on line recently and came across your obituary, so I now wont be able to catch up with him to talk about the old days. It was only recently posted so thanks for that.
    Incidentally I was a Hansard Junior in the old days (1966) when we used to run the hansard texts and proofs back and forth to the back door of the old works next door, so we were close then too without actually meeting again.
    As a youngster he was never without a football or a basketball in his hand. He introduced me to South Adelaide Basketball at Forestville (where I never matched his prowess) and also to the Beetles.
    Oh and his mum’s kichen was solid black and red.
    RIP Warren.
    Regards and thanks, Jeff Burgher.

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