Home' Air Force News : February 17th 2010 Contents AUSTRALIAN PEACEKEEPING MEMORIAL
Commemorating Australian Peacekeeping
Past, Present and Future.
Australian Peacekeepers have a strong history of
making a positive, practical difference in the lives
of people affected by conflict and it is now our time
to show our support.
Our aim is to unveil the Memorial on ANZAC
Parade on Australia's 65th Peacekeeping
Anniversary -- 14th September 2012.
This cannot happen unless sufficient funds can be
raised for its construction.
To achieve our goal of $3 Million, we have
established a tiered giving approach, so that
individuals or corporates have a simple but
effective way to support the construction of the
You can become a part of Australian
peacekeeping history today!
Go online to become a Mate of Peacekeeping.
If you have been on one of the many missions
listed on the website, or you are a friend,
family member or supporter, this Memorial is
Australian Peacekeeping Memorial Project
PO Box 907, Jamison Centre, ACT 2614
Phone: (02) 6215 4203
To build this important Memorial
your support is needed!
Over the last few years The Australian
Peacekeeping Memorial Committee have
been working hard to develop a National
Peacekeepers Memorial in Canberra to honour
all those who have and will continue to serve on
In 2006, a voluntary committee established the
Australian Peacekeeping Memorial Project with
a vision to establish an appropriate national
Memorial to honour and acknowledge this
A volunteer Committee of peacekeeping
veterans is overseeing this project. The
Committee includes representatives from the
• Australian Defence Force
• Australian Federal Police
• United Nations Association of Australia
• United Nations Police Association of Australia
• Australian Peacekeepers and Peacemakers
• National Headquarters of the Returned and
Become a part of Peacekeeping history
by making your donation today and
together we can ensure the Memorial will
be opened on the 65th Anniversary of
Australian Peacekeeping, Sep 14 2012
February 17, 2011
"IT WAS a long night and some patients
were scared and concerned, but the pro-
fessionalism of all involved ensured that
the evacuation went smoothly."
So said WGCDR Stephen Davis,
of Health Services Wing, commenting
on the night of February 1 and 2 when
the Air Force helped move 173 civilian
patients from Cairns to Brisbane.
In a mighty effort that has been
applauded within and outside the Air
Force, a pair of C-130s and C-17As were
loaded with aero-medical evacuation
(AME) teams and raced against the clock
to complete the evacuations.
The order came to Air Force on the
afternoon of February 1. At that time,
Tropical Cyclone Yasi was building to
a Category 4 storm on a direct path to
That evening, AME teams from
RAAF Bases Amberley, Williamtown
and Richmond boarded Hercules and
Globemasters for the flight north.
Time was short. Loading large num-
bers of AME patients can be a lengthy
process, and aircrew pressed the limits of
their crew duty as poor weather closed in
Shortly after 10pm on February 1,
all four aircraft touched down at Cairns
Airport. Twelve civilian aircraft were
also providing AME services.
Loadmasters and Mobile Air Load
Teams (MALTs) from 1 Airfield
Operational Support Squadron set about
configuring the aircraft for patients.
WGCDR Davis, leading the AME
assessment of incoming patients, said
the mood was generally calm despite the
large number of patients being evacu-
Over the next eight hours, AME
teams loaded four high-dependency
patients, 102 stretchered patients, 67
walking patients and two accompanying
"All the patients that I cared for were
appreciative of the hard work that the
teams were doing to take them to safety,"
WGCDR Davis said.
"All patients arrived safely in
Brisbane without any significant clinical
incidents occurring during the flight.
"Despite the long mission and feel-
ing tired, all members of the team were
proud they were able to assist the Cairns
community and the patients by evacuat-
ing them out of harm's way.
"All personnel involved in the con-
duct of the mission -- AME, aircrew and
NEXT-OF-KIN or another appro-
priate relatives of deceased former
servicemen and women who lost
their medals during natural disasters
such as the Victorian bushfires,
Cyclone Yasi or the Queensland and
Victorian floods can now apply to
This follows a review and
modification of official govern-
ment policy that was announced
by Parliamentary Secretary for
Defence David Feeney on February
10. Senator Feeney said that official
policy was that replacement medals
could only be issued to the specific
member of a former member who
"This usually means that med-
als cannot be replaced if they are
lost or destroyed after the ADF
member has died," Senator Feeney
Government now has decided
that in the case where medals are
lost during natural disasters it is
appropriate for that policy to be
relaxed so that relatives may apply
for a reissue.
Because medals of earlier conflicts
are no longer in production, only
medals dating back to WWI can be
Applicants should use the
application form and statutory
declaration located on the Defence
Honours and Awards website at:
Completed applications should
be submitted to: Directorate of
Honours and Awards
Department of Defence, PO Box
7952, Canberra BC, ACT 2610.
Enquiries can be made to Defence
Honours and Awards on toll free
number 1800 111 321.
Medals to be replaced
MALT personnel -- worked seamlessly
together," WGCDR Davis said.
Leading the airlift component,
WGCDR Charlie Siedentopf said the
evacuation was a great success.
"All the players made this hap-
pen, Queensland Health professionals,
our own personnel and, of course, the
patients," WGCDR Siedentopf said.
CAF AIRMSHL Mark Binskin
praised the efforts of the Air Force per-
"This was a considerable effort with-
in Air Force's air-mobility and health-
support community, which responded at
very short notice," AIRMSHL Binskin
"I congratulate and thank all the
Air Force personnel who responded
to this short notice tasking, and who
worked through the night to deliver
these patients out of the path of Cyclone
On February 9, Air Force finished the
operation by returning 35 patients who
could not be transported by other civilian
and government assets back to Cairns
RACE AGAINST TIME: A C-17A on the tarmac at Cairns Airport with local ambulances. They were faced with moving 173
patients to Brisbane as Cyclone Yasi raced towards them.
Photo: LAC Philip Sharpe
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