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Tamworth High School 1972 14A
Warren Rodwell (2nd from left in back row) played second row in scrum
Warren Richard Rodwell (born June 16, 1958  Homebush NSW)  a former soldier  in the Australian Army, and university English teacher, grew up in Tamworth NSW  He was shot through the right hand when seized  from his home at Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay on the island of Mindanao in the southern Philippines on December 5, 2011  by Abu Sayyaf (ASG) militants. Rodwell later had to have a finger amputated.
The ASG threatened to behead Rodwell  if the original ransom demand for $US2 million was not paid. Both the Philippine and Australian governments had strict policies of refusing to pay ransoms. Australia formed a multi-agency task force to assist the Philippine authorities, and liaise with Rodwell’s family. A news blackout was imposed. Filipino politicians helped negotiate the release. After the payment of $AUD94,000  for “board and lodging” expenses  by his siblings, Rodwell was released 472 days later on March 23, 2013. The incumbent Australian prime minister praised the Philippines government for securing Rodwell’s release. Tribute was also made to Australian officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Australian Federal Police and Defence.  Rodwell subsequently returned to Australia.
As part of the 2015 Australia Day Honours, Australian Army Lieutenant Colonel Paul Joseph Barta was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross (CSC) for outstanding devotion to duty as the Assistant Defence Attaché Manila during the Australian whole of government response to the Rodwell kidnap for ransom (and immediately following, the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan). At the 2015 Australian Federal Police Foundation Day award ceremony in Canberra, fourteen AFP members received the Commissioners’ Group Citation for Conspicuous Conduct for their work in support of the Philippine National Police and Australian Government efforts to release Australian man Warren Rodwell.
By the end of his 15 months as a hostage in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, Rodwell had lost about 30 kilograms in weight due to starvation, His biography 472 Days Captive of the Abu Sayyaf – The Survival of Australian Warren Rodwell by independent researcher Dr Robert (Bob) East was published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, United Kingdom (2015) ISBN 1-4438-7058-7 
In January 2015, Mindanao Examiner newspaper reported the arrest of Barahama Ali  kidnap gang sub-leaders linked to the kidnapping of Warren Rodwell, who was seized by at least 5 gunmen (disguised as policemen), and eventually handed over or sold by the kidnappers to the Abu Sayyaf in Basilan province.
Australian Federal Police members have been acknowledged at a Foundation Day award ceremony in Canberra.
Fourteen AFP members received the Commissioners’ Group Citation for Conspicuous Conduct for their work in support of the Philippine National Police and Australian Government efforts to release Australian man Warren Rodwell, who was held captive by militants in the southern Philippines for 15 months.
In presenting the awards, Commissioner Andrew Colvin thanked all members for their commitment to the community.
“These awards are a testament to the AFP’s ability to continually achieve successful outcomes and adapt to an ever-changing environment,” Commissioner Colvin said.
“The AFP will continue to face many challenges, and looking at the calibre of our award recipients today, you will agree that we are well placed to meet these challenges.”