Wednesday 25 October 2023

History Club Girls Win Again!

On Monday October 23, myself and my colleague Michael attended the presentation of the ANZAC Day Schools Award to the girls of the Year 11 History Club at St Patrick's College for Girls. This is another outstanding achievement for the History Club girls and their teacher Fran Musico Rullo. Fran's passion for Campbelltown's history is amazing and is reflected in the girl's dedication to whatever project they take on. The award was announced in August and resulted in a prize of $3000. This year's theme was Australians and the Vietnam War and the History Club researched the experiences of local people during the conflict. It included interviews of three veterans and the creation of a website. Each girl gave a short presentation and local Federal Member for Macarthur Mike Freelander was in attendance. 

Congratulations Fran and the girls of the History Club on this well deserved recognition!

This is the link to the website:

FINAL- Campbelltown NSW and the Vietnam War (1).pptx - Google Slides

One of the girl's presentations revealed something I was previously unaware of. On 8 June 1966 a 21-year old Campbelltown woman living in Rudd Road, Leumeah named Nadine Jensen was arrested and charged for offensive behaviour during a welcome home march for Vietnam veterans in the city. A video was presented of the incident. Miss Jensen had drenched herself with a mixture of kerosene, turpentine and red paint. She said it was symbolic of the blood being shed in the Vietnam War. Dripping wet, she threw her arms around the leader of the march who was the commanding officer of the 1st Battalion. Colonel Preece shrugged Miss Jensen off and kept marching. Nadine Jensen later said "I'm glad I did it. I wanted to make the politicians realise that some people in Australia are opposed to sending troops to Vietnam".

The protest was headline news in the press the next day. However, Nadine Jensen seems to have disappeared into history. Local researchers have attempted to trace what happened to her but without success. I have endeavoured to locate her, searching the usual resources for an answer. I have had no luck. Perhaps someone out there knows what became of Nadine Jensen?

 Nadine Jensen at the time of arrest (SMH)

The incident with the red paint at the march (SMH)

Written by Andrew Allen

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