As she arrived back home at Fleet Base West it had been a long time at sea for the crew of HMAS Sheean. The boat was meet by the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett as well as Commander Submarine Force, Captain Matt Buckley, families of the crew and members of the submarine community.
Sheean departed Fleet Base West in early May and has returned home after a lengthy South East Asian deployment including participation in Exercises as well as BERSAMA SHIELD, RIMPAC, LUNGFISH and the Submarine Command Course (SCC).
On her travels, Sheean also had multiple stopovers including Singapore, Guam and Pearl Harbor.
For Captain Buckley, who assumed command of the Submarine Force in early October, it was an unusual experience given that Sheean has been deployed for the entire duration of his new command.
“The high tempo of our operational requirements combined with our maintenance cycle meant there were no boats alongside when I took Command but Sheean has now returned after a successful deployment. It is a particularly special to have Chief of Navy here to welcome the team home after a highly successful deployment; the third longest in our submarine history,” said Captain Buckley.
“It was great to see families and members of the submarine community enthusiastically welcome her home. It goes a long way to demonstrate the tight-knit and inclusive nature of our submarine community."
Commanding Officer HMAS Sheean, Commander Richard Smallwood, was delighted to be welcomed home by so many people.
“The tempo has been high and the crew have done a superb job in what has been some trying circumstances but all that is forgotten as we pull into Fleet Base West with a wharf lined with our fellow submariners and our friends and family,” Commander Smallwood said.
It is particularly poignant that the submarine has returned home in time for Submarine Week - a week to commemorate the Centenary of service by the submarine community in Australia.
Submarine Week will commences with a Freedom of Entry into the City of Fremantle and include various services, meetings and will culminate in an Operational Safety Conference.