Marist Brothers High School Darlinghurst

Old Boys' Union

                                                                                                                                          Christmas  2023


~  Merry Christmas Gentlemen ~

to each of you and to members of your family

     and welcome to the Christmas edition 2023 of the Blue & Blue

from the OBU Team.



With Christman upon us, it's time to reflect of all the positives that the year brought such as ... and there was .... well, an end to covid, sort of. Yes, 2023 has had a lot of things best left in the past, reflecting the very anthesis of Christmas, across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Fortunately Australia remains a bastion of blessed existence for the vast majority of us, even with our heart-breaking droughts, devastating fires and crippling floods.

2023 was the 60th anniversary of the Class of '63, the 70th anniversary of Class of '53 and for quite a number of even more senior members, another anniversary to remember.

Chasing up Old Boys, as emails & addresses often change, is somewhat time-consuming. With the 2023 reunions, Patrick McDonnell (Class of 1943) loomed large on our radar, being his 80th Darlo anniversary but Patrick was unable to be located. We did, however, receive a response from James McDonnell (Class of ’60) advising, “The only Patrick  McDonnell that I knew finished his school studies at age 12 in Loughburke,, Ireland – my father! He emigrated  to Australia with his brother Tom in 1930.

One of his other brothers who remained in Ireland had 12 children including one they named Patrick but he never travelled to Australia. I must admit in all my growing up in Sydney I never met another person named McDonnell.”

The Class of '63 celebrated our reunion at the Dee Why RSL with Tony Bacci returning for a brief visit from the USA, where he has been domiciled for decades. Undoubtedly refreshed by the Oz cultural reinvigoration, Tony could return, able to entertain his compatriots with magic tricks, which our gatekeeper displayed at their reunion. Hugh Thompson sent his apologies from Europe, where he was holidaying. Robert Jones rendered his apologies. Jeffrey Fallon made the trek from Murwillumbah but health issues kept him from attending. Peter Dawson couldn't believe his luck with the venue almost a jog from home. After leaving his hearing aids at home, Bob Brassil enjoyed the lip-reading exercise. Graham Jones demonstrated his maths expertise differentiating double figures from treble. Kym Derriman "entertained" with a couple of magic tricks. Oleh Butchaski watched as his brother, Roman Butchaski, conducted a circuit of attendees to see who had the greatest claim to medical procedures. "Butch" produced gales of laughter, however unbeknown to all, it was to be the last time that some of us would see Roman again.

Another reunion was celebrated with the class of '58. Des Cannon, also on a brief visit from the USA where he too, has been domiciled for decades, met up with classmates Kevin Fitzpatrick and Michael Blakeney at the Crow's Nest Hotel. The walls would have vibrated from laughter, with that combo. Kevin fell and broke his hip earlier in the year, whilst climbing a ladder on a Probus probe in a ship at the Maritime Museum but, not to be deterred, managed to make it to the reunion.


Now, for some more reflections on the year that was, 2023:

Chris Hogan (Class of '65) advised that he and his wife, Dallis, sold their trophy & engraving business and decided to give retirement a try. "We have been living in Coffs Harbour for the last 37 years (behind the 6th tee of Coffs Harbour Golf Club). If any Darlo golfers are passing through please make contact. Thanks for keeping the Darlo old boys going."


Shane Smallwood Class of '65) returned with tales tall & true from Phucket, long enough to change underwear and then off to China. The cultural plunge had him squinting upon his return, disseminating philosophical jewels.

Robert Casamento (Class of ’60) sent across some interesting facts.

“Whilst watching the show ”Who do you think you are” on SBS, I learnt about the building of Horizon, Darlinghurst in the 1854 by John Rae, the first Clerk of Sydney in the 1830/1850s.

On further checking I found it is the building at 278 Liverpool St. that was the Marist Brothers’ Monastery and MBHS Darlinghurst office during the period the school was operating, in addition to Stoneleigh on Forbes Street.” Details and photos:

Maybe the Brothers acquired it from John Rae (1813-1900) estate when they were acquiring the school site about 1910.



Reg Richardson (Class of '53) followed in the footsteps of Kevin Fitzpatrick as President of Probus for Neutral Bay-Mosman.

Br. Paul Murphy shared reflections on football and too, what is a criteria of Marist legacy.

Some of you may have watched Celtic play Sydney FC as well as Everton FC in Sydney last year. You probably know that the great Brother Walfrid fms founded this club 134 years ago in 1888 to get kids of Irish shipyard builders off the streets of Glasgow and provide them with meals and something to aspire to other than being vagrants. Hence he founded a football club for kids he called Celtic.


I had the good fortune to visit the club a few years ago and I was delighted to see just how Marist it still is. In the huge trophy cabinet next to the UEFA cup they won years ago is a beautiful siver figurine of Marcellin Champagnat with Kids. Our young guide a Scottish ex student who did not know that I was a brother regaled us correctly on the life of Champagnat and Bro Walfrid which astounded me. When he learnt who I was I got the royal treatment at Celtic Park. When I asked him how importantly Celtic sees its mission to the poor today he went to great lengths to enlighten me even taking me outside to view some of its projects.


You might have noticed that on the famous green and white hoop jumpers worn last weekend besides the club badge was inscribed the words 'Celtic Foundation'. On their website this Foundation is described as:


"Charity is a fundamental part of Celtic’s identity. Our foundation recognises the enormous importance and responsibility of honouring the legacy of our founding father, Brother Walfrid. With your help, we create opportunities for our society’s most vulnerable and marginalised individuals and groups."


What a legacy Brother Wilfrid whose bronze statue in black soutane and rabba stands on a plinth outside the club's entrance and oval today with the words reminding us .... to ensure that no child should go to bed hungry.


Tony Baine contributed well-compiled research to the Maristian on our schoolboy athletes of the 40’s.

Tom Mullins represented Australia in the 1948 Olympic Games in the Decathlon where he finished a very creditable sixth to the legendary Bob Mathias. Because of his all-round sporting talents which were evident at school at Darlinghurst, Tom was offered a scholarship to a Canadian university, which he accepted and he became one of the most prominent basketballers in Canada, ultimately being  coach of the Canadian team and for at least a year of his life played in the team which were night in and night out, beaten by the Harlem Globetrotters. His younger brother Peter Mullins, was an Australian champion hammer thrower but because he was pursuing studies in America and Canada, the Australian selectors refused to select him either for the Commonwealth or Olympic Games because all his record throws were performed out of the country.


There could be no mention of Darlo old boy cricketers without reference to Ray Lindwall, who was a schoolboy champion not only in cricket but in rugby league and athletics. He and his brother Jack played first grade rugby league for St George and Ray appeared in two grand finals, the last of which was before he transferred his full attention to cricket. On that occasion his usually reliable kicking boots let him and his team down in the grand final against Canterbury; By the time Ray had achieved international status after the 1948 Australian tour of England, three Darlinghurst schoolboys were showing incredible aptitude for cricket. John Bolster, Brian Flynn and Jack Clark all played Sheffield Shield cricket. John had an incredibly long career with Randwick and ultimately Sutherland, while conducting a successful accountancy practice.


One of the interesting features of Australian Test cricket particularly the Ashes series is that between 1938 and 1990 only four players who attended Catholic schools were picked to play for Australia -Ray Lindwall, Jack Moroney (Joeys), Gordon Rorke ( St Aloyisius) and Kerry O’Keefe (Kogarah Marist from whence the Lindwalls came to Darlinghurst);Lindsay Hassett, a Catholic, did not attend a Catholic High School. The belief is that this situation arose because of Donald Bradman’s antipathy towards Catholics in the 1930s. The irony is that one of Darlo’s early cricketing prodigies E.A.Chappie Dwyer, himself a NSW Sheffield Shield player was a National selector from 1930 to 1952, throughout the entire career of Bradman and obviously succumbed to Bradman’s sectarian wishes after the 1938 English tour. However Chappie could not dismiss the talents of Lindwall and Hassett and they were selected to play for Australia.

The current Australian Test Captain, Pat Cummins, is a great grand-son of a Darlo old boy and WW1 Veteran, Jack McGloin who ran a successful manufacturing pharmaceutical company.


Darlo, with its small numbers, produced one international NRL player, Harry Finch ,a South Sydney winger who won two premierships with Souths and was a member of the 1929 Kangaroos. Sammy Ogg who was the NSW government analyst for many years and constantly called upon to discover the causes of mystery deaths and was a fearsome tackler in the 5/8 position played first grade for Sydney University  as did  Jim Comans , ultimately a lawyer after a distinguished  career as a  pilot in WW2 and was the initial Chairman of the NRL Judiciary.

From  the 1940 school years Les Brennan and Brian Staunton went on to great careers, Les with Souths and Brian with Balmain.  Les played for South Sydney in the 1955 premiership team and scored a record number of tries in that season and held the club record for 67 years until Alex Johnston surpassed it. Brian Staunton, a halfback, who died in 2021, captained Balmain in the 1956 final against South Sydney, by which time Les Brennan had retired. Balmain won that match but were beaten by St George in the grand final; Ron Thornton played more than 100 first grade games for Canterbury. He had won prizes for sport and good conduct at school and is still living in Canberra. His younger brother Brian Thornton also played for Canterbury but mainly lower grades.

In subsequent years Michael Ogg, Greg Christensen, Denis Ryan and Stan Browne played grade football but mainly in the second and lower grades. Darlo did not produce many Rugby players although Daryl Rees (father of former NSW Premier Nathan Rees) played some great football as a centre for Easts but as a former Wallaby team mate said, his great talents as a penetrating centre who could tackle, were wasted with ten-man Rugby.


Darlo produced many good schoolboy boxers at a time boxing was a school sport (this ceased in the late 30s) but a student in the primary school in 1950s  Roy Thurgar went on to win the state professional light heavyweight boxing championship which he lost to Bobby Dunlop – he also played lower grade Rugby League with South Sydney and after retiring as a boxer moved into a life of crime ,his life ending  outside Marcellin College in Alison Road Randwick where he was shot whilst waiting to collect his wife from her laundromat.


Darlo influenced the Sport of Kings as two old boys were successful jockeys-Dorian Osborne

finished school in 1956 to become an apprentice jockey to Fred Allsop a one-armed Randwick trainer. Dorian was a leading  apprentice, Dux of the Apprentices school but with increasing weight was forced to ride in Malaysia and India and tragically lost an arm in an accident which put an end to his career before he was 30. Rae Togo Johnstone had incredible success in India, Malayasia and particularly in France in the 1930’s as well as in postwar England  Furthermore Cyril Angles a friend of Togo Johnstone was a legendary pioneer race caller and Michael Laffan (Class of '58) was one of the youngest bookmakers to field at Randwick.



Frank McGovern passed away May 24, 2023.

Vale Frank


Dr. Brian Pollard (Class of ’43) passed 27 March 2023

Brian Pollard was a leading anaesthetist at St Vincent’s Hospital before he moved to Concord Hospital where he pioneered palliative care at that Hospital through anaesthetics.

Vale Brian


Ronald Brayan (Class of ‘51) of West Ryde passed on 7 Feb 2023. Ron was involved in the musicals organised by Brother Honorius in the early 1950’s and retained all the programs. Ron won a University Exhibition in Engineering and a Commonwealth Scholarship.

Vale Ron


Michael O’Carroll (Class of ‘59),elder brother of John and Peter, passed away 31st. May 2023. Dearly loved life partner of Arpita (Jutta) and father of Jamie (deceased) and Daniel.

Vale Michael


Bryan DAWSON (Class of ‘50) passed away peacefully 22 May 2023 at the age of 89

Known in the Cricket world as “Smokie”. Much loved and loving husband of wife Jan for over 35 years.

A man of great passion, determination and drive, his life was inspiring.

Vale Bryan


Roman Butchaski (Class of '63) an avid adventurer and often lone-fisherman, "Butch" is missing-in-action after chasing his passion in dangerous waters. He will be surely missed, especially by his family and too, by his classmates with whom he enjoyed weekly encounters over the decades, since leaving school.

Vale Butch.



John Murray (Class of ’58) Sadly another member has dementia and while his long term memory is OK his short term is not so good. John and his brothers went to Darlo. Their father was a highly decorated general who served in WW1 and 2 and at one stage led the Brigade that defended Tobruk. He later became Trade Commissioner to Sri Lanka and New Zealand and was awarded a State Funeral.



Christmas is a time for laughter and good cheer so we encourage you to visit an abundance of it, awaiting in our website.



   Beyond Blue continues to provide support for anxiety and depression, providing resources for recovery, management and resilience.


Servo fidem,


Kym Derriman




*Class of " refers to the final year for those who sat the LC or HSC in that year and also to their classmates who left school  in earlier years.


President, OBU

Kym Derriman

9311 3344


Vice President/Secretary

Tony Morrissey

9311 4598


Tony Smith




Reg Richardson A.M.

Michael Blakeney


Marist Executive

Br. Paul Murphy







All mail to:

The Secretary,


POB 6177

Malabar  2036







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Old Boys' Union

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Old Boys' Union

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Blue & Blue

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