Quilts appreciated by team on operations

Published on LCDR Fiona Eggins (author), LSIS Tom Gibson (photographer)

Topic(s): Operation MANITOU, HMAS Warramunga (F152)

HMAS Warramunga shipmates, Lieutenant Thomas Liley (left) and Chaplain Stephen Hutchinson proudly hold their quilts, made by Aussie Hero Quilts, during the ship’s deployment to Operation MANITOU. (photo: LSIS Tom Gibson)
HMAS Warramunga shipmates, Lieutenant Thomas Liley (left) and Chaplain Stephen Hutchinson proudly hold their quilts, made by Aussie Hero Quilts, during the ship’s deployment to Operation MANITOU.

There are a just a few things that help make a deployment away from family and friends bearable - emails and phone calls home, letters and care packages and quilts and laundry bags made by Aussie Hero Quilts.

The hard working volunteers from Aussie Hero Quilts have helped put a little extra vibrancy and personality into each mess deck in HMAS Warramunga.

Warramunga’s Chaplain, Stephen Hutchison, who assisted in managing the requests, shared the sentiment from ship’s company that the care and attention  put into the quilts was abundantly clear.

”When I received my quilt, it was obvious that it was made with love and appreciation. It is a reminder of my time in Warramunga that I will always treasure,” he said.

Adding a splash of colour to the otherwise grey warship, Warramunga’s crew showcased their handmade quilts whilst alongside Muscat, Oman.

The requests were as diverse as the crew themselves, featuring everything from nautical themes, superheroes to Disney princesses and unicorns, with the final designs a secret until the recipient opened their care package.

Lieutenant Tom Liley requested a Warramunga specific, nautical themed quilt and was thrilled with what he received.

“My quilt was a timely addition to my small bed space, giving it a much needed and ‘homely’ feel during my deployment.” he said.

Able Seaman Monique Hogan became pen pals with her quilter, who made her a quilt with different destinations from around the world.

“I received my quilt in Jordan, six months into the deployment, along with a lovely letter. It was one of the highlights of my deployment, and I have kept in contact with her,” said Able Seaman Hogan.

The hard work, love and care that goes into the quilts, laundry bags and care packages are greatly appreciated by all who receive them, and Warramunga’s ship’s company would like to thank all involved in Aussie Hero Quilts for their efforts in supporting the troops.

Aussie Hero Quilts have made more than 9000 quilts and 17,800 laundry bags since it began in January 2012.

Warramunga has been deployed to Operation MANITOU, conducting maritime security operations with the Combined Maritime Forces.

This is HMAS Warramunga’s third deployment to the Middle East and is the 66th rotation of a RAN vessel in the region since 1990.