More than 1,700 Australian Defence Force personnel are deployed in the Middle East on operations this Father’s Day – and amongst those who are fathers and grandfathers, 10 have just become new dads.
Many of the Navy personnel in the region are involved in maritime security operations in guided missile frigate HMAS Newcastle for counter terrorism patrols in Middle Eastern waters, the ship has a pair of parents who are itching to welcome newborns into the traditions of the day.
New-dads Petty Officer Electronics Technician Anthony Adams and Leading Seaman Marine Technician James Cockburn are on a six-month deployment patrolling the waters in support of the United States-led Combined Maritime Forces.
Leading Seaman Cockburn didn’t get to meet his son before departing for the deployment as the boy was born just three weeks ago, but he has a picture of him close at hand, as does Petty Officer Adams with his own son.
“We both keep pictures of our sons hanging in pride of place and can’t wait to be reunited with our families when we finish our mission,” Leading Seaman Cockburn said.
“I cannot wait to meet my son.”
For those deployed this Father’s Day, they’ll no doubt call home, but will also be focusing on the job at hand - helping protect Australia’s national interests for the future of their kids.