Home' Army News : February 4th 2010 Contents WWW.VU.EDU.AU
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Army February 4, 2010
CA LT-GEN Ken Gillespie personally
thanked Australian community support
for soldiers deployed on operations
during the Christmas season.
Care packages, hampers and letters
flooded into operational areas and eased
the burden of being away from family.
Lt-Gen Gillespie told Brisbane radio
station 4BC that six tonnes of care pack-
ages arrived in December and took 14
air-transport pallets to move them.
"I really do want to offer my sincere
appreciation to the hundreds of fami-
lies and individuals who have taken the
time, effort and expense to support our
soldiers currently serving in operation-
al theatres across the world," Lt-Gen
More than 25,000kg of mail was
sent to operational theatres and repre-
sented more than 6kg of mail for every
Further messages were sent through
blogs, web posts and emails in addi-
tion to radio, television and other media
organisations sponsored to support sol-
Commercial organisation Chrisco
dispatched 30 food hampers to East
Timor, 20 to Solomon Islands and 20 to
The RSL continued its traditional
support with the delivery of its Christmas
School and community groups also
provided Christmas spirit. West Wyalong
Public School and the local community
collected lollies, magazines and small
gifts for about 135 care packages. The
CA said the support had assisted in a
personal and meaningful way to bring
Christmas to about 4000 troops on oper-
Middle East celebrations featured
a traditional Christmas dinner for the
National Headquarters, the C-130
Hercules and AP3 Orion aircraft detach-
ments, the Force Communications Unit
and the RAAF Combat Support Unit.
In keeping with tradition, it was the
one time where officers served dinner to
junior ADF personnel.
Care packages also arrived for explo-
sive detection dogs on Op Slipper who
chewed their way through tinned food
and chewing toys.
Sig Julieanne Horsman, Op Anode,
said off-duty soldiers left uniforms in
cupboards to wear Christmas themed t-
shirts and Santa hats in Solomon Islands.
"Soldiers of all ranks excitedly
opened the hampers, some immediately
tucking in to the tasty snacks inside,
while others placed their boxes under
the Christmas tree to save for later," Sig
Anzac soldiers, sailors and airmen
in East Timor marked the festive season
with a series of carol services in Dili.
Op Astute padre Chap Andrew Rutley
said it was a way of connecting people
"It is important for people to enjoy
the Christmas experience regardless of
where they are," Chap Rutley said.
Festivities: From left, Spr Jessie Fuente, Cpl Wayne Meech, WO2 Shawn
Goodbody as Santa, Spr Brandon Keemink and his dog, Aussie, and Spr
Mark Winwood at Camp Holland, Afghanistan.
Photo by Sgt Mick Davis
Best wishes: Maj Craig Campbell spreads the Christmas cheer through Dili
in East Timor. Soldiers gave gifts to the children on Christmas Day.
Photo by AB Jo Dilorenzo
Goodies galore: Soldiers from CTF 635 enjoy their RSL gifts on Christmas
Day in Solomon Islands.
Sgt Francesco Mazzella
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