Easter on task for Op SOUTHERN INDIAN OCEAN

Published on CPOIS David Connolly (author), ABIS Julianne Cropley (photographer)

Topic(s): HMAS Success (OR 304)

Keeping it fresh: ABML-C Stephen Finnigan brings up a box of fresh vegetables for a midday meal. (photo: )
Keeping it fresh: ABML-C Stephen Finnigan brings up a box of fresh vegetables for a midday meal.

More than a thousand miles away from the nearest coast, men and women on ships deployed to Operation SOUTHERN INDIAN OCEAN spent the traditional long-weekend ‘break’ scouring the ocean for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

Despite being at sea for Easter undertaking search operations, HMAS Success ship’s company paused to mark the occasion with a service and hot cross buns. Success sailed from Fremantle on 19 March to join the search and since then has been on task 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

ABML-C Stephen Finnigan checks on a tray of pastry in the galley of MV Seahorse Standard.

ABML-C Stephen Finnigan checks on a tray of pastry in the galley of MV Seahorse Standard.

Conditions in the southern Indian Ocean have been uncompromising, but the ship’s crew have not wavered in their attempts to find information for the families and friends of those lost.

Success’ Commanding Officer, Captain Allison Norris, took the opportunity to reflect on the special meaning of this Easter for her crew.

“Easter represents a new beginning and the hope for fullness of life for all people,” she said.

“We've been aware that many people around the world have been praying for us over the last few weeks and this service gives us the opportunity to give thanks and to pray for them too - our presence here has given hope and some healing to those who have lost their loved ones on board flight MH370.”

HMA Ships Success, Perth and Toowoomba with ADV Ocean Shield and MV Seahorse Standard maintain a presence at sea for Australia alongside ships from the United States, China, Malaysia and the United Kingdom.

Chaplain Colin Tett, RAN of HMAS Success holds a service during the Easter period for personnel onboard while deployed in search of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

Chaplain Colin Tett, RAN of HMAS Success holds a service during the Easter period for personnel onboard while deployed in search of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

Chaplain Colin Tett, RAN of HMAS Success holds a service during the Easter period for personnel onboard while deployed in search of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.

Chaplain Colin Tett, RAN of HMAS Success holds a service during the Easter period for personnel onboard while deployed in search of the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.