Home' Greymouth Star : December 7th 2013 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Saturday, December 7, 2013
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uLetters to the editor
1815 - France's Marshal Ney is shot after a
treason trial for aiding Napoleon Bonaparte at
1915 - Evacuation of Anzac forces from
1940 - e British attack larger
Italian forces in Libya by surprise,
capturing 40,000 prisoners.
1941 - Japanese planes attack the
US Paci c eet at Pearl Harbor,
Hawaii, destroying many aircraft
and ships and precipitating the US
declaration of war on Japan.
1949 - Nationalist government of
Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek, eeing the
Communist takeover of mainland China,
establishes its seat of government in Taiwan.
1953 - David Ben-Gurion resigns as
premier of Israel.
1971 - Unmanned Soviet space capsule
sends back radio and television signals from
1974 - Archbishop Makarios returns to
Cyprus after ve months in exile.
1975 - Indonesia invades East Timor.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Saigo Takamori, Japanese Restoration hero
(1827-1877); Noam Chomsky, US
linguist and political activist (1928-
); Ellen Burstyn, US actress (1932-);
Tom Waits, US singer-songwriter
(1949-); Larry Bird, US basketball
star (1956-); C omas Howell, US
actor (1966-); John Terry, English
soccer player (1980-); Aaron Carter,
US pop singer (1987-); Emily
Browning, Australian actress (1988-).
"Any frontal attack on ignorance is bound
to fail because the masses are always ready to
defend their most precious possession --- their
ignorance." --- Hendrik Willem van Loon,
Dutch-American journalist and lecturer
"Because He Himself was tested by what He
su ered, He is able to help those who are being
tested." --- (Hebrews 2.18).
Sections in Haast
may be o ered to the
public early next year,
it was announced from
Hokitika on ursday, a planning scheme at
present under consideration includes provision
for a possible domain, camping ground and
business area as well as land on which people
could build houses and baches.
ere have already been a number of inquiries
for sites for private development from Otago
and Canterbury as well as the West Coast.
An amended remit calling for a ban on
potential farm land being allowed to pass into
the hands of the New Zealand Forest Service
for re-a orestation purposes, and proposing
that any provisional State forest land deemed
suitable for pasture be handed over to the
Lands and Sur vey Department, was approved
by the provisional executive of West Coast
Federated Farmers in Greymouth yesterday
e original remit was put forward by Mr
C L Reinheimer and seconded by Mr W J
Cairns. e sponsor said that the takeover
(especially since 1947) of potential farmland by
the Forest Service was the cause of the concern.
Mr C D MacDonald said that he considered
some thought must be given to the fact that if
the land was secured from the department it
would be reasonable to assume that it would
demand the land be farmed. "If it is not to
be farmed then the land is probably better
growing trees," he said.
e president Mr A C Marshall agreed. He
suggested that the remit be reworded. Mr
Reinheimer then agreed to delete the portion
of the remit dealing with re-classi cation of all
West Coast land.
uToday s birthdays
uFood for thought
Printed and published by the
Greymouth Evening Star Co Limited
3 Werita Street, PO Box 3, Greymouth
03 769 7900 (o ce)
769 7913 (editorial)
768 6205 (fax)
Sports Editor Tui Bromley
Chief Reporter Laura Mills
03 769 7913
03 755 8422
Each year, in America, the fourth
ursday of November is set aside by
presidential proclamation to be a day
of anksgiving. e day following
thanksgiving is also a public holiday and,
for many, is the start of the Christmas
season as many communities and families
put up their Christmas trees and turn on
the Christmas lights. e anksgiving
weekend often coincides with the start of
the church season of Advent.
Advent is the season that includes
the four Sundays before Christmas.
e word itself means "coming" and is
the time of the year when the church
looks in two directions simultaneously:
backwards and forwards. We look back
with joy and thanks to the rst coming of
Jesus when God humbled Himself and
became a human baby born to a simple
village couple in order to show us what
God is like, to show us what humanity
was designed to be, and to make a way
for humanity to be transformed to the
original design. We also look forward
with hope and anticipation to the second
coming of Jesus when God will complete
the project of establishing His Kingdom
of justice and love on the earth.
You can imagine my dismay, therefore,
when I watched an item on the news
last Saturday describing 'Black Friday' in
America. e day after anksgiving has
become the biggest shopping day of the
year and, in many cities across America,
has turned into a day of escalated greed
as some shoppers scramble, sometimes
violently, for bargains.
Here in New Zealand we often hear
this time of year described as 'the silly
season' as we, too, get caught up in the
commercialisation and franticness of the
lead up to Christmas. Perhaps it would be
good for us all on both sides of the Paci c
to pause and remember the profound
simplicity of the rst Christmas and
make conscious decisions about how we
celebrate and how we can reach out to
those less fortunate than ourselves. As the
Apostle Paul wrote, "Don't do anything
from sel sh ambition or from a cheap
desire to boast, but be humble towards
one another, always considering others
better than yourselves. And look out for
one another's interests, not just for your
own. e attitude you should have is the
one that Christ Jesus had." (Philippians
May your lead up to Christmas be
peaceful and your Christmas blessed.
Rev Marge Te t
Greymouth and Kumara
Advent, alas ....
America's rst pony car
--- the Ford Mustang ---
is celebrating its 50th
birthday with a swoon-
worthy new design, which
is heading Down Under.
Ford Motor Co revealed the 2015
Mustang this week at events in New York,
Los Angeles, Shanghai, Sydney, Barcelona
and its hometown of Dearborn.
It goes on sale next autumn in North
America and will reach Europe and Asia
"Mustang cuts to the heart and soul of
our company and really represents our
company at its best," Ford chief operating
o cer Mark Fields told hundreds of
dealers and employees gathered in
Dearborn to see the new car.
e Mustang is not anywhere near
Ford's best-seller. Ford sells more pickups
in a week than it does Mustangs in a
month. But Ford says the Mustang has
the highest name recognition and highest
favourable opinion of any of its cars. And
car companies count on beautiful sports
cars to cast a glow over the rest of their
e Mustang's rst full redesign since
2005 presented Ford with a tough task:
Update and freshen an icon without
alienating its passionate fans.
More than nine million Mustangs
have been sold since 1964, and the car
has more than 300 fan clubs around the
world, including one in Iceland and one
solely for owners of yellow Mustangs.
Farrah Fawcett drove a white one in
Charlie's Angels; Steve McQueen raced a
dark green one through the streets of San
Francisco in 1968's Bullitt.
e new car takes plenty of cues from
the old. e long bonnet and sloping
fastback are still there, as is the trapezoid-
shaped grille with the Mustang logo
from the original. But the new car sits
lower and wider, and the roof tapers
dramatically in the front and back. e
signature rounded headlights are smaller
and sit back under a erce, chiselled brow,
while the traditional three-bar tail lights
are now three-dimensional and tucked
beneath the rear deck lid.
is new generation of Mustang
has been engineered to meet various
international safety and emissions
standards. A right-hand-drive version
will be sold in the United Kingdom and
Australia, and Ford will market the car
more heavily overseas.
Ford design chief J Mays said that
while international needs were taken into
account, the design was not in uenced by
European or Asian sensibilities.
" e reason they love it is because of its
American-ness," he said.
Still, Stephanie Brinley, an auto analyst
with the consulting company IHS,
expects modest overseas. IHS forecasts
European Mustang sales will triple from
current levels to about 2500 in 2015,
while sales in China will likely remain
low because two-door coupes are not
Coupes make up less than 1% of sales
annually across the globe, Brinley said.
But they are still an important car for
automakers to have.
"It's an aspirational body style. It signals
a sporty drive and a sexier product," she
Ford hopes Mustang can become the
top selling pony car in the United States.
e Chevrolet Camaro, which followed
the Mustang to market in 1966 and was
last redesigned in 2009, has outsold its
rival for the last three years.
Mustang buyers will have three engines
to choose from: updated versions of
the current 3.7-litre V6, which gets a
projected 300 horsepower, and 5.0-litre
V8, with 420 horsepower, as well as a new
2.3-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder that gets
a projected 305 horsepower. Ford will
also o er updated six-speed manual and
automatic transmissions. Final numbers
for horsepower and fuel economy will be
Ford is not saying how much the new
Mustang will cost. e current one starts
around $28,000. A convertible version
will also be o ered. --- AP
e headline said it all: Chicago comes
In December 1963, New Zealand
experienced its rst taste of big-time
crime. Two underworld gures gunned
down by machinegun-wielding villains as
they slept in a villa on a sleepy street in
Unbeknown to most, in the age of
6 o'clock closing and pubs closed on
Sundays, 115 Bassett Road had been
operating as a beer house, a place where
people could drink their grog and spin
their tales well under the radar of the
But on December 7, 1963, the dreamy-
looking villa on the leafy suburban street
was thrust into the spotlight and the
history books when the men behind the
operation, George Walker and Kevin
Speight, were found dead.
e pair were executed in the front room
of the house by Ron "Jorgy" Jorgensen
and John Gillies, two men known to
police for the part they were already
playing in Auckland's seedy underbelly.
eir bodies were riddled with bullets
from a .45-calibre machinegun. It was
the rst time such a weapon, famously
favoured by legendary gangster Al
Capone, had been used in a crime in New
Zealand --- until then, police did not
believe there were any in the country.
e case, dubbed the Bassett Road
machinegun murders, captivated the
nation, and 50 years on, it is still well
known and often discussed.
Today marks the anniversary of the
discovery of the bodies.
A book has been released delving deep
into the history of all the main players.
New Zealand's Gangster Killings: e
Bassett Road Machine-Gun Murders by
Scott Bainbridge tells the story of the
"sly grogging, horse doping, prostitution,
drugs, rival gangs and tough cops" that
made up the criminal landscape of the era.
His decision to write the book came
after a long fascination with the case and
when he realised he was running out of
"I knew I needed to get on to it while
some of the people involved were still
alive," Bainbridge writes in the book's
intro. "I felt it vital to tell this story from
a rst-hand point of view before it was
e personal anecdotes littered through
the book come from former detectives
and relatives and associates of the dead
and the killers.
MP John Banks --- who was a teenager
at the time of the murders and living
with his father, Archie Banks (a regular
but well-respected character in criminal
circles) --- shared his experiences of the
burgeoning Auckland under world he
grew up in.
"From the ages of 15 to 17 were
the most exciting, bewildering and
frightening years of my life. I lived life in
the fast lane," Banks told Bainbridge.
Gillies and Jorgensen were arrested
on New Year's Eve, tried for murder in
February 1964, and sentenced to life in
Jorgensen was released on parole 21
years later, on the condition that he lived
the rest of his life in Kaikoura. en in
1984, Jorgensen's car was found wrecked
at the bottom of a cli , and he was never
What happened to Jorgy is still a
question asked by many. Did he fake
his death and ee to Australia? Was he
knocked o by someone connected to
his violent past? Did police help him
escape? Despite a few "sightings", he was
o cially declared dead, but the mystery
e ink was still drying on their
ownership papers when Annick and
Tim Larkin's real estate agent dropped a
eir newly purchased villa was the
scene of one of New Zealand's most
"We were signing on the dotted line
and the agent said, literally just as we
were signing, 'Do you know anything
about the history of the house?' " Mrs
"And the agent told us that the vendor
thought we might like to know the house
had a bit of a scary history to it, that two
people were murdered in here in 1963."
e news did not deter the Larkins
from their dream home. Now, just over
three years later, the couple and their
children Lottie, four, Esther, three, and
Tom, 18 months, have been inundated
with media wanting to lm "the room"
--- their lounge --- and grill them for
information about the Bassett Road
machinegun murders, which happened
there 50 years ago.
"It's never bothered us at all, it doesn't
faze us one bit."
" e room" where George Walker and
Kevin Speight were gunned down is
now full of happy family memories. A
Christmas tree in one corner, wedding
photos on the wall, comfy couches and
toys mask the gory past.
Recently, Mr and Mrs Larkin saw
photos of the crime scene.
"It's bizarre, surreal," Mrs Larkin said.
"But it's never been creepy. We've never
felt weird in the room."
--- New Zealand Herald
PICTURE: New Zealand Herald
Annick Larkin with Lottie, Esther and Tom in the room where the murders took place. Mrs Larkin and husband Tim are not
bothered by the house's gruesome past.
e day Chicago-style murder came to NZ
e Bassett Road machinegun murders 50 years ago were solved swiftly but mystery remains over one of the gunmen.
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