Reveille for service and sacrifice

Published on LEUT Will Singer (author), CPOIS Damian Pawlenko (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Stirling

Topic(s): Recruit School, Remembrance Day, Last Post Ceremony

Seaman Brenton Knight is training to be a Combat Systems Operator at HMAS Stirling, Western Australia.  (photo: CPOIS Damian Pawlenko)
Seaman Brenton Knight is training to be a Combat Systems Operator at HMAS Stirling, Western Australia.

Historically, bugles sounded to command the crew of warships, and in this case, the echoes signalled an inspiration to join the Royal Australian Navy.

From the age of eight, Seaman Brenton Knight performed the Last Post and Reveille on the bugle for local school Anzac and Remembrance Day services.

“Over the last five years prior to joining the Navy I’ve had the privilege of performing at the Coffs Harbour RSL dawn, main and sunset services,” Seaman Knight said.

“The combination of having the privilege to perform this sacred tune with the ability to talk to veterans and widows before and after the services has given me great inspiration to continue the legacy of service and sacrifice. 

“I wish to continue performing the Last Post into the future and aim to inspire the younger generations, our future servicemen and women, to serve with the same pride, passion, commitment and dedication to the nation that our past and present Defence members have done so with.

“There were many influencing factors as to why I joined Defence - from a very young age I always had the ambition to serve in the Royal Australian Navy,” he said.

The Rural Fire Brigade volunteer firefighter said that graduating from Recruit School was one of his most memorable occasions since joining the Navy over six months ago.

“Graduation was an occasion like no other because it infused a sense of pride, joy, exhilaration and euphoria that I’ve never encountered before,” Seaman Knight said.

“The feeling of overcoming the many obstacles and challenges during those 11 weeks provided - was a sensation that the graduating division will never forget.

“At the moment I am posted to School of Maritime Warfare-West and training towards my role as a combat systems operator above-water,” he said.

“It’s an important role for Navy, tasked to maintain a surface picture compilation, prevent a maritime collision and assist command in making decisions regarding navigation.

“The ability to be an integral component to a ships warfighting capability and doing a job that I love is the best part.

“The job is not without contest - like being alert and vigilant at all times including times of little rest as well as challenging yourself to stay positive and remain focused to task.

“The Navy is what I love; it’s a lifestyle and a career like no other.

“I intend to make it a lifelong career eventually transferring the knowledge, skills and valuable lessons learnt as a junior sailor over to the commissioned officer career path as a pilot.

“It’s my duty to instil the same dedication and passion I have for this Navy onto future sailors and officers of the Navy,” he said.