A Fraserburgh man has been awarded a medal by the Malaysian government in recognition of the assistance he gave the country during a time of emergency in the late 1950s.
Bob Sim, a former Banff and Buchan councillor, was presented with the Pingat Jasa Medal by Brigadier General Othman H J Jamal, the Malaysian Defence Attache, at a special ceremony in Perth.
The citation with the medal reads:
‘For distinguished chivalry,
gallentry, sacrifice and loyalty in upholding the penisular of Malaysia during a period of emerbency and
Mr Sim, now 73, told the Herald: “I think this is quite special to receive this recognition of the help that we gave them.
“We had a great day and my wife Sheena and I enjoyed it, as it brought back a lot of memories. In fact, we have just returned from a trip to Singapore, so it was all quite timely,” he said.
Mr Sim saw active service while serving in the Army Air Corp during his National Service.
“I certainly did not envisage doing active service, a lot of my colleagues wanted to go to Germany after their Basic Training, but I did not express a perference and ended up in Malaysia,” he said.
Today, Mr Sim’s role would be described as ‘gathering intel’, but as far as he is concerned he simply flew spotter aircraft:
“I did two months’ basic training at Woolwich, then I was posted from there. Training was not a long period of time.
“I went in 1957 and came home in 1959,” he added.
There were ten peace-keeping groups honoured for their part in assisting in Malaysia in what is described as a time of emergency.