The Annual Bradley Meek Perpetual Shield was awarded for the second consecutive year to an Instructor from the Royal Australian Navy School of Survivability and Ship Safety (RANSSSS) Training Facility – South, at HMAS Cerberus, Victoria.
The Bradley Meek Perpetual Shield is awarded in honour of Leading Seaman Marine Technician Meek, who perished during the main machinery space fire onboard HMAS Westralia on the 5th of May 1998. The shield is presented to "The most outstanding Combat Survivability Instructor in the School of Ship’s Survivability and Safety organisation".
This year the Shield was awarded to Leading Seaman Marine Technician Robert Thompson.
Leading Seaman Thompson won the award for providing a very high level of instruction, reportedly delivered with a unique sense of humour which promoted an infectious learning environment.
"It's humbling to receive this award and being recognised for doing my job," Leading Seaman Thompson said.
"I really do enjoy coming to work and trying to make my lessons a fun and positive experience; especially Chemical Biological Radiological and Nuclear Defence (tear gas), because it burns. I always ask my students two questions at the end of the course: did you have fun, and did you learn something?"
Manager of Training Facility- South, Warrant Officer Ian Waller, said he was proud that his facility had produced two consecutive award recipients.
"Leading Seaman Thompson is a well respected sailor with an exceptionally positive attitude and strong work ethic," Warrant Officer Waller said.
"It's a great honour to see him recognised for all his efforts over a long period of time."
Leading Seaman Thompson’s colleagues acknowledged him as being a pillar in the delivery of all facets of Combat Survivability training.
Director Training Authority – Maritime Warfare, Captain Will Martin, presented the Shield to Leading Seaman Thompson in the presence of his wife and staff at Training Facility - South.