Fight for flight

Published on ABCSO Clint Brady (author), LEUT Keith Whitehead (photographer)

Executive Officer, Lieutenant Georgina Rae (Right), Able Seaman Combat Systems Operator Mine Warfare Clint Brady (Middle), and the Operations Officer, Lieutenant Beau Mulraney (Left), pose with the official ‘Fight for Flight’ Fundraiser Challenge Poster. (photo: LEUT Keith Whitehead)
Executive Officer, Lieutenant Georgina Rae (Right), Able Seaman Combat Systems Operator Mine Warfare Clint Brady (Middle), and the Operations Officer, Lieutenant Beau Mulraney (Left), pose with the official ‘Fight for Flight’ Fundraiser Challenge Poster.

The ship’s company of HMAS Diamantina, which is currently deployed in support of Operation RESOLUTE, is undertaking a challenge to raise funds and increase public awareness for the Royal Flying Doctor Service Queensland.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service Queensland has eight bases servicing an area of 1,727,200 square kilometres, and they provide around the clock health care across the entire state.

Diamantina is named after the Diamantina river which runs from Birdsville, Queensland, to Lake Eyre, in South Australia.  Birdsville is the capital of the ship’s affiliated shire, and every year the Birdsville horse races raise money in support of the Royal Flying Doctor Service Queensland.

This year the ship’s company will visit Diamantina shire to partake in the 100th anniversary of the landings at Gallipoli.

Prior to completing their deployment in late April, the crew are aiming to ride, row, walk and run the distance from the ship’s home port of Sydney, to Birdsville, and back, a total distance of 4,140 kilometres, with a goal to raise $4,140 by that date.

Diamantina is a minor war vessel primarily designed to hunt and dispose of mines; she is 52.5 metres long and has 45 personnel.  With just two bikes, one rower and their own legs, members have set themselves a tough challenge, but they are determined to reach their respective personal goals, and achieve the overall total.

Lieutenant Dakota Tuohy demonstrates the rowing machine onboard HMAS Diamantina that will be used in the charity challenge to raise funds for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Lieutenant Dakota Tuohy demonstrates the rowing machine onboard HMAS Diamantina that will be used in the charity challenge to raise funds for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Operations permitting, physical training takes place on a daily basis, which provides opportunity for personnel to notch up some kilometres.  Individuals are able to insert their totals into a database, which automatically accumulates personal and whole ship totals, and is synchronised with the fundraiser website. The challenge has ignited some healthy competition between certain team members who now compete on an almost daily basis to get to the front of the leader board.

Able Seaman Combat Systems Operator Mine Warfare Clint Brady, who set up the challenge and website, currently leads the pack.

"This is a great way for us to become more involved with our affiliated shire and raise funds for the Flying Doctors," he said.

"The planning, organising and managing of this challenge and fundraiser has given me a high level of satisfaction. It has also proven to be an additional incentive for fitness training amongst the ship’s company, who are playing their part - members of the public and businesses just have to donate.”  

Every donation will go towards assisting the services and capabilities of the Royal Flying Doctor Service Queensland.  

In addition to contributing to a worthy cause each donator will receive a thank you email which includes the total kilometres achieved, individual results and the total amount of money donated.  

To learn more and to donate, visit www.fightforflight.net