ANZAC spirit alive and well on OCEAN EXPLORER

Published on LCDR Dallas Gray (author), LSIS Christopher Szumlanski (photographer)

Topic(s): Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER, HMAS Success (OR 304)

Officers and sailors from the Royal New Zealand Navy embarked in HMAS Success during the transit from Fleet Base East in Sydney to Fremantle, WA. (L-R) Ordinary Marine Technician Quinn Harris, Ordinary Marine Technician Kody Wilson, Midshipman Hamish Hahunga, Leading Hand Marine Technician Sam McGill, Sub Lieutenant Eddy Hall, Able Seaman Combat Specialist Joshua Halliwell, Sub Lieutenant Cameron Jamieson, and Ordinary Marine Technician Ofa Vala. (photo: LSIS Christopher Szumlanski)
Officers and sailors from the Royal New Zealand Navy embarked in HMAS Success during the transit from Fleet Base East in Sydney to Fremantle, WA. (L-R) Ordinary Marine Technician Quinn Harris, Ordinary Marine Technician Kody Wilson, Midshipman Hamish Hahunga, Leading Hand Marine Technician Sam McGill, Sub Lieutenant Eddy Hall, Able Seaman Combat Specialist Joshua Halliwell, Sub Lieutenant Cameron Jamieson, and Ordinary Marine Technician Ofa Vala.

The Ship’s Company of HMAS Success has welcomed eight members of the Royal New Zealand Navy on board for part of the ship’s final deployment before she’s decommissioned in June.

The Royal New Zealand Navy contingent, consisting of three officers and five junior sailors, jumped at the chance to sail in Success just a week after the Royal Australian Navy extended an invitation for them to join ‘Battle Tanker’ on her final voyage as a ‘Her Majesty’s Australian Ship’.

Prior to sailing, the Kiwi’s relished the chance to get out and about to enjoy the many sights, sounds and culinary delights Sydney has to offer.

Midshipman Hamish Hahunga said they all enjoyed exploring the city, but the focus was now firmly on the deployment.

“Sydney is a big city, but it was fun getting out and exploring,” Midshipman Hahunga said.

“We visited a bunch of big ticket tourist attractions and enjoyed the various cafes and restaurants.

“Now that we’ve sailed though, it’s time to switch onto the task at hand and quickly come up to speed with the ship’s routines. Fortunately there isn’t a big difference in the way we conduct business in our own ships,” he said. 

For Ordinary Marine Technician Quinn Harris, the opportunity to sail in Success was an exciting prospect.

“Initially, it was all a bit of a rush, from hearing we were coming across to saying our farewells to family and friends, but from the moment we stepped on-board we were welcomed by the ship’s crew and made to feel right at home,” Ordinary Rate Harris said.

“We’re all pretty excited and looking forward to working and training alongside the ship’s company, and the port visits look pretty awesome as well,” he said.

The embarkation of the Royal New Zealand Navy personnel presents an excellent opportunity to strengthen the enduring partnership between the two countries.

The shared voyage is also a timely reminder that the ANZAC spirit remains as strong as ever.

Success is deployed for four months and will visit a number of ports in the Indian Ocean and South Asia areas in order to strengthen partnerships with some of Australia’s close partners and promote security and stability in the region.