The SSAA Waratah Shooting Complex in Tasmania held a Perpetual Memorial Shoot on December 12, 2015, to honour Corporal Cameron Baird VC MG and raise much-needed funds for Cam’s Cause, which helps support the Commando Welfare Trust (CWT).
His life was cut short, but Corporal Cameron Baird VC MG has a legacy that will live on. His posthumous Victoria Cross, awarded after he drew enemy fire away from his comrades is a reflection of his life. Corporal Baird was an outstanding Special Forces soldier. He exemplified what it meant to be a Commando, living by the attributes of uncompromising spirit and honour, which in turn earned him the unconditional respect of his fellow Commandos.
Cameron Baird is remembered through Cam’s Cause, which helps raise funds for the Commando Welfare Trust (CWT). When Cameron was not serving overseas, he spent lots of his time supporting the CWT. Founded in 2014, Cam’s Cause works with the CWT, which ensures that the families who fall through the cracks of defence force welfare schemes are not forgotten about. This means ensuring proper care for families in unique circumstances and helping identify people who might need more help.
SSAA Waratah Shooting Complex President Royce Crawn played football with Cameron’s father Doug so long ago that Cameron was too young to qualify for Auskick (1988). Some 28 years later and despite moving interstate, Royce stayed in touch with Doug and when he heard about Cam’s death in Afghanistan on June 22, 2013, he reached out to see how he could help.
Since Cam was a ‘Burnie Boy’, SSAA Waratah, led by Royce, decided to do something. The branch held a Perpetual Memorial Shoot on December 12, 2015, to honour Cameron and raise much-needed funds for Cam’s Cause. “There was a lot of help and support from everyone,” said Royce. “Everyone chipped in and everyone donated something.”
On the day of the shoot, the ISSF Centre Fire/Sport Pistol competition was battled out between 30 members. Among a very strong line-up the top place went to Jonathan ‘Johno’ Linden, followed by Lew Rout in second and Royce Crawn in third place.
In total, the SSAA Waratah shoot raised $600, which will go to the Cam’s Cause Legacy Fund. SSAA Tasmania also chipped in with $250 towards a Tasmanian sassafras shield completed with laser engraving. The shield now rests proudly in the Burnie RSL.
“The shoot had such a great response it will definitely be an annual event now. We have a lot of ex-military members down here, but really our shooting community comes from all walks of life,” said Royce. “All the money raised each year from this shoot will go to Cam’s Cause.”
Cameron lived by a simple motto he kept inside his locker. The phrase inspired himself and all those around him: ‘Aspire to Inspire’.