The hard working volunteers from Aussie Hero Quilts have wowed HMAS Newcastle’s crew with their hand-made quilts and laundry bags – literally covering the ship from bow to stern.
Newcastle’s Chaplain, Cornelius Bosch, managed the orders and said the ship’s company deeply appreciated the hard work and well wishes of the quilters.
”The coordination and receipt of the quilts and laundry bags was a huge success and provided a huge boost to the morale of the ship’s company,” he said.
“Once the word was out to the sailors that quilts and laundry bags were available for request, a steady stream of orders came in to be sent to the quilters back home.”
The requests from sailors were extremely creative, with design requests ranging across unicorns, ‘united’ football clubs, Newcastle-themes, nautical blue turtles, pugs and pink Disney princesses.
The quilters painstakingly made some amazing pieces of art.
Chief Petty Officer Naval Polic Coxswain Frank Ritchie was very surprised to discover that his work of art was signed by the Port Adelaide AFL Football Team.
“My quilter went ‘all out’ to complete her handiwork and had it signed by the players especially for a long-time supporter of the Port Power,” he said.
Chaplain Bosch said the gifts from home sends sent a simple message with great impact.
“It says, ‘we care about what you do for us left at home and we care about you’,” he said.
“It provides a connection with the nation we love and call home.
“To the sailor isolated from family it provides a real morale boost and can make their day.
“Newcastle would like to thank all quilters and supporters of Aussie Hero Quilts that have made it possible for personnel to receive a quilt.”
Newcastle has been deployed in Middle Eastern waters on maritime security operations with the Combined Maritime Forces.