"I'm not going to whisper, I'm going to shout my son's name, I'm going to shout them all because they need to be seen. We will not bury and forget 500 of Australia's bravest."

‘They make them, break them and throw them away’

BROADCASTER Alan Jones has slammed the government's handling of suicide among war veterans as "disgraceful" amid claims that bureaucrats are whitewashing the issue.

Speaking to two mothers of war heroes who have died ahead of The Daily Telegraph's Save Our Heroes Summit today, Jones called out the government's handling of the issue.

"Bureaucrats - the people whose job it is not to make life easier for service personnel but harder," he said.

 

 

Julie-Ann Finney with a portrait of her son Dave Finney. Picture Matt Turner
Julie-Ann Finney with a portrait of her son Dave Finney. Picture Matt Turner

 

 

Dave Finney died aged 38 in February.
Dave Finney died aged 38 in February.

 

 

Alan Jones has slammed the government’s handling of suicide among war veterans.
Alan Jones has slammed the government’s handling of suicide among war veterans.

 

"You will never find a greater group of cover-up merchants, even when our defence pay the ultimate price nothing changes," the 2GB host said this morning.

Julie Anne Finney, whose son Dave died aged 38 in February, told Jones that her son lost his job when he first flagged his mental health struggles with the defence force.

"From the moment he raised the issued he was told that he could no longer deploy and was taken off the ship. There was nothing he could do about that."


Just 18 when he joined the army, Dave wanted to make a difference, only to be told he would have to wait 6 months to see a psychiatrist, according to Ms Finney.

"They make them, break them and throw them away," she said.

Glenda Watson, whose son Bradley Carr died on Anzac Day this year, told Jones that her son was trying to get help for six years - a battle that he ultimately took to his grave.

 

Brave mums... L-R: Nikki Jamieson, mother of Private Daniel Garforth; Colleen Pillen, mother of Private Michael Powers; Glenda Watson, mother of Private Bradley Carr; Julie-Ann Finney, mother of Navy Petty Officer Dave Finney; and, Jan Hewitt, mother of Private Brock Hewitt in Sydney on Tuesday. Absent: Karen Bird, mother of Private Jesse Bird. Picture: Jonathan Ng
Brave mums... L-R: Nikki Jamieson, mother of Private Daniel Garforth; Colleen Pillen, mother of Private Michael Powers; Glenda Watson, mother of Private Bradley Carr; Julie-Ann Finney, mother of Navy Petty Officer Dave Finney; and, Jan Hewitt, mother of Private Brock Hewitt in Sydney on Tuesday. Absent: Karen Bird, mother of Private Jesse Bird. Picture: Jonathan Ng

 

Ms Watson, who says the army was her son's "life," says the government's failure to hold a royal commission into the issue is a "shambles."

"I'm not going to whisper, I'm going to shout my son's name, I'm going to shout them all because they need to be seen. We will not bury and forget 500 of Australia's bravest."

 

If you're someone who is affected by the themes discussed in this story, there is help available. 

 

 

Private Bradley Carr died on Anzac Day this year.
Private Bradley Carr died on Anzac Day this year.