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June 10, 2010
THEY might be heavily outnumbered
but the Air Force contingent of the
International Stabilisation Force (ISF) in
East Timor did a mighty job raising funds
for Relay for Life on May 15 and 16.
The team-members, who called
themselves Air Force One, raised $6882
-- making them the second-largest fund-
raiser in the Army-dominated ISF.
Relay for Life is an international
fundraising event, which raises funds
vital for Cancer Council Queensland's
work into cancer research, patient sup-
port services and education programs.
Using an Air Force-branded yo-yo as
the team baton, Air Force One -- compris-
ing SQNLDR Fleur James, FLTLT Tim
Keating, FLTLT Tom Dunn, SGT Graham
Schnaars, SQNLDR Rod Humphries,
FLGOFF Andrew Sheldon-Collins and
SGT Ben Gilbey -- were among about 90
ISF members who walked, ran, danced
and pack-marched for 18 hours around
a 400-metre track at ISF Headquarters
Camp Phoenix in Dili.
The ISF collectively raised $35,000
from fundraising activities in the lead-
up to the relay and at the relay event.
Air Force One set up camp on May
15, decorated their tents on the Camp
Phoenix sports field and kicked a foot-
ball and enjoyed music from a local
East Timorese band with the other ISF
teams. The Air Force working dogs,
recently arrived in the ISF, also put on a
Rain halfway through the relay did
not slow Air Force One's members as
they pounded the track, collectively
making over a hundred laps.
Air Force One's approach was to
divide the 18-hour relay up into shifts of
a couple of hours each.
As the night grew on, the team was
physically and mentally exhausted but
the humid air was punctuated with
cheerful 'Best of the 80s Sing Star' and
shouts of encouragement from ISF par-
ticipants and supporters.
Air Force One raised a large amount
of money in the lead-up to the relay
event through a trivia night at Camp
Phoenix, their own personal efforts
with friends and family and by raising
awareness through the official Air Force
SQNLDR James said she found
the campaign and the relay itself very
"The event unified ISF members by
bringing everyone together for a worthy
cause," she said.
"We were all watching and sup-
porting our own team mates and the
other teams when it wasn't our turn on
the track. I think events like this really
demonstrate the community spirit of
Defence Force people."
Members of Air
Force One in East
Timor, from left,
Schnaars, FLTLT Tim
FLTLT Tom Dunn
and SQNLDR Fleur
DIG DEEP: Above, Air Force personnel in East Timor, FLTLT Tom Dunn and SGT Debbie
Zigmantas, make a donation for the Salvos Red Shield Appeal. They were in one of the 15 military
locations around the world that were "doorknocked" for the appeal to support the Salvation Army's
community and outreach support programs.
Photo: CPL Scott Smedley
GIVE GENEROUSLY: Inset, SGT Leanne Butler, on deployment from RAAF Base Tindal, passes
the Salvation Army's Red Shield Appeal collection tin around among ADF members in the Middle
Photo: SGT Brent Tero
Air Force troops raise the bar
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