QSM award for Ian Rankin Smith
Former OCL radio officer Ian Rankin Smith received the Queen's Service Medal in the New Zealand New Year Honours List 2023. The citation for Ian's award reads:
The Queen’s Service Medal:
SMITH, Mr Ian Rankin, JP
For services to civil defence and the community
Mr Ian Smith has been involved with various community organisations within Te Karaka and the Waikohu area of Tairawhiti, while managing his vineyard and citrus orchard.
Since 2000, Mr Smith has been the Civil Defence Community Link Area Coordinator responsible for 13 communities across a large rural area, including Te Karaka township. As Te Karaka is vulnerable to being isolated in a flood event, he engages with the Emergency Coordination Centre in Gisborne and emergency services to inform decision making and actions during adverse events. He has supported the Gisborne Civil Defence team during multiple heavy rain events, which have impacted the Waikohu and Waiapoa Rivers. He drove the acquisition of two-way radios to ensure communication when telecommunications have been less reliable during flooding events and was instrumental in setting up a shipping container of basic necessities for an evacuation scenario. He volunteers as a radio operator for the Gisborne Coast Guard. He received a Citizen’s Civic Award for Community Service and Leadership from Gisborne District Council in 2006 for his involvement with the Waikohu Civil Defence Organisation. Mr Smith has been a member of Te Karaka Community Health Committee since 2005 and served on the Gisborne Justice of the Peace Board in 2003 and 2011.
The Queen's Service Medal (obverse and reverse)
The Queen's Service Medal (QSM) is awarded for voluntary service to the community or service through elected and appointed office at a local or regional level.
[https://dpmc.govt.nz/image-galleries/2467/media?page=3 - Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY)]
Ian Rankin joined the New Zealand Shipping Company (NZSCo) as a radio officer in 1965.
NZSCo was then a P&O SNCo subsidiary company and Ian was seconded to OCL in March 1970. His first OCL ship was the Encounter Bay which he joined on 13 March 1970 in Antwerp for a voyage to Freemantle, Melbourne and Sydney. That trip ended in Antwerp on 26 May 1970 and was followed by a second voyage which completed on 9 August 1970.
After some leave Ian joined the Discovery Bay on 23 October 1970 in Tilbury. That voyage down to Australia and back ended in Tilbury on 16 January 1971. After taking some leave, Ian returned to NZSCo.
We would like to thank Ian for his kind permission to tell his story here, and for providing the details of his time at sea with OCL.
The Encounter Bay was the first of six OCL vessels which became affectionately known as the 'Baby Bays'. Her maiden voyage from Nothern Europe to Australia commenced in Rotterdam on 06/03/1969 (P&O Heritage - Encounter Bay fact sheet), so she had been in service for just a year when Ian Rankin joined her in 1970. The Encounter Bay was sold for demolition in 1999 and met her fate at Panyu, China.
A sister ship of the Encounter Bay, the Discovery Bay was delivered for the Europe-Australian trade (with the later extension to include New Zealand) on 30 /06/1969. She remained in service with OCL and then P&O Containers until 16/11/1990 and was finally scrapped at Alang, India in 1999 (P&O Heritage - Discovery Bay fact sheet).
The New Zealand Shipping Association (Inc.) - Association website
New Zealand Shipping Company - P&O Heritage website
We did an article back in 2013 on John McKay, another former radio officer (or 2OR/2nd Officer Radio as the position was known in OCL and P&O Containers) - See A radio officer's career in pictures and John's website Nautical 3 Peaks.
The Encounter Bay