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Parkes High School

Parkes High School

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PHS Memorial Awards

Parkes High School is fortunate to have many Memorial Awards that are presented to our students for their achievements during the year. This page explains the background for these awards.


The Kelly Swetland Memorial Award

This shield is in memory of Kelly Swetland, who was a Year 11 student at Parkes High School in 1992. Kelly was tragically killed in a car accident. Kelly was a lover of sport, particularly Athletics & Netball, and demonstrated the finest qualities of commitment and dedication to sport. The Award was donated by Kelly's classmates and a debutante photo of Kelly hangs in the Administration building.


The Helen Walsh Memorial Award

Donated by Helen's Science Faculty colleagues, this Shield perpetuates the memory of a highly respected teacher of Parkes High School, who died after a short battle with cancer in 1994. Helen was extremely dedicated to the study of Biology in particular, and enthused her students with a love of the subject.


The David Carty Memorial Award

David Carty was a student at Parkes High School from 1984 to 1989. David was tragically killed in the line of his duty as a Police Officer in Fairfield in 1997. David was a highly respected student, talented sportsman and very gifted in Wood Technology. David's HSC Major Work, a beautifully crafted cabinet, was one of a few from around N.S.W. to be chosen by examiners for the Intech display. The Trophy for this Award was donated by David's family.


The Shannon Elliott Memorial Award

This award is made in the memory of Shannon Elliott, a student of Parkes High School from 1999 until his death on the sporting field in 2003. The award is for a student who participates in school activities, perseveres in studies, and maintains a good attitude towards school.


The Gertrude Ahrens Award

Mrs Gilda Ahrens was an English History teacher at Parkes High School during the late 40's and early 50's. A single mother, she managed to teach as well as raise two boys, Michael and Phillip, entrenching in them the necessity for academic excellence, which they have both achieved in their careers and have passed on to their own children. This award in her name is for a student who has shown academic achievement, and is continuing their studies at University next year.


The Tony Danilenko Memorial Prize

"Tony" Danilenko was born of Russian parents who migrated to Australia after World War II. He went to school at Parkes High and entered the Royal Military College, Duntroon in 1960. He graduated into Infantry in December 1963. After service with 1RAR as a Platoon Commander he volunteered for the Special Air Service Regiment where, in 1966, he served as a Troop Commander during "confrontation" in Borneo. In 1967 he was posted to HQ AFV and then at his own request was transferred to the AATTV. He was appointed to the 5th Special Forces Group as an advisor with a Mobile Strike Company. Captain Danilenko was killed in action in the area North of Dak Pek on the 25 April 1968. For his conduct during this battle he was Mentioned in Despatches. This Memorial prize is provided by the Duntroon Class of ‘63.


Daniel Woolfe

Daniel was a young man who struggled with many hardships during his time at Parkes High School; however dance was an area in which he excelled, helping instruct many Parkes children in indigenous dance. This award is for a Koori student who themselves has had to deal with hardships to attend and succeed at school.


Con and Betty Diamond Memorial Award

Con and Betty Diamond were residents of Parkes for over 50 years, with Con operating a pharmacy in Clarinda Street which is now Parkes Pharmacy. Con and Betty were involved in many service organisations, being Rotary and in later years the Parkinson's Support Group. Con and Betty both supported Parkes High School generously over the years through offering places for work experience students and awards for academically successful students. This award is presented to a student who has shown high academic achievement consistently through the senior years of school.


The Miss Olney Memorial Sportsmanship Award

The Parkes High School community was saddened by the sudden passing of Miss Melanie Olney. She was much loved and highly respected by her students, her colleagues, and the wider school community. Beyond her excellent contribution as a Science and Physics Teacher, Miss Olney's input across a broad spectrum of school life was greatly valued.

Miss Olney was supportive of students through her role as a Year Adviser; she encouraged leadership as a facilitator of Student Representative Councils over the years. She was also a dedicated squash coach, taking the Open Girls' teams to success, including state champions 2013 and 2014 and state runners-up 2017.

Miss Olney was a kind and compassionate person, who coordinated the Charities and Appeals Committee for many years, modelling empathy and understanding for those less fortunate than ourselves.