Geraldton local brings submarine home for a visit

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Gary McHugh and Ms Harriet Pointon Mather (author)

Location(s): Geraldton, WA

Topic(s): HMAS Farncomb (S74)

Commander Michael Power, Commanding Officer of HMAS Farncomb. (photo: )
Commander Michael Power, Commanding Officer of HMAS Farncomb.

One of the Royal Australian Navy’s Collins Class submarines visited the Western Australian city of Geraldton in July, with one of the city’s natives at the helm.

Commander Michael Power guided the 78-metre submarine HMAS Farncomb into his home port for a four-day logistics visit.

Commander Power, first moved to Geraldton with his family in 2000, finishing Years 6 and 7 at the local primary school then undertaking his high school studies at Geraldton Secondary College.

He joined the Navy from Geraldton in 2007.

A keen sportsman, Commander Power has fond memories of the Railways Football Club and Wanderers Cricket Clubs.

“I enjoyed sports and the local Geraldton sports competitions were always a highly competitive environment,” Commander Power said.

Commander Power said it was a privilege to visit his home town and he was confident his crew would make the most of their time in Geraldton.

“It’s a great honour for me to bring Farncomb into Geraldton and to show off my home town to my crew,” he said.

“Despite my Navy career taking me to many far off places, Geraldton still holds a special place in my life and it’s great to be able to catch up with family and friends again.”

In fact there was a very special and unexpected catch up that took place when Commander Power’s parents, June and Tom, happened to be in Geraldton coincidentally at the same time as their son.

June said how incredibly proud and excited she was to see her son, especially under such surprising circumstances.

“We were just passing through Geraldton when we heard the submarine was in port and headed straight down there,” June said.

“We are very proud of Michael and so happy to have been there for his very special visit home in Farncomb.”

Geraldton is a coastal city in the mid-west region of Western Australia, 424 kilometres north of the state capital, Perth.

The city is regularly visited by Navy ships, but to see a submarine pulling into port is a little less common, and it provided the perfect opportunity for locals to see one of Navy’s most advanced vessels.

Farncomb, along with Navy’s five other Collins Class submarines, is home-ported at Fleet Base West on Garden Island, which is south of Perth near the City of Rockingham.

Commanding Officer of HMAS Farncomb, Commander Commander Michael Power with his parents Tom and June at the port of Geraldton, Western Australia - Commander Power’s hometown.

Commanding Officer of HMAS Farncomb, Commander Commander Michael Power with his parents Tom and June at the port of Geraldton, Western Australia - Commander Power’s hometown.