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Army November 11, 2010
By Capt Stephen Turner
RELATIVES and friends joined
the Governor and Acting Premier
at Adelaide's Keswick barracks on
October 30 to farewell 75 soldiers,
mainly reservists from 9 Bde, before
their departure for peacekeeping
duties in Solomon Islands as part of
Rotation 23 of Operation Anode.
The contingent had completed the
South Australian part of its training and
was heading to Queensland for further
training before deployment.
The forecast rain held off long
enough for the departing soldiers to
march onto the parade ground for
inspection by the Governor of South
Australia RAdm Kevin Scarce.
Also looking on were acting
Premier Kevin Foley, RSL President
Jock Statton, Chair of the South
Australian Defence Reserve Support
Council Pamela Schulz and Comd 2
Div Maj-Gen Craig Williams.
"Our soldiers can't be part of the
Defence force without the support of
their families and friends," Maj-Gen
Williams said "so it's just so impor-
tant we have our families and friends
at these parades to acknowledge their
Maj-Gen Williams described the
Solomon Islands' mission as "vitally
important to that country".
"It's seeking to become more sta-
ble and asked for support, and we're
pleased to provide it," he said. "Our
very best soldiers go to Solomon
Islands and in doing so, they gather
fantastic individual skills, they learn to
work as a team and come back far bet-
ter for it."
Cpl Briony McNicol, 144 Sig Sqn,
said she was excited to be going, but
was also a little bit nervous.
"I'm just looking forward to the
experience and getting out into the
community and meeting the Solomon
Islanders," she said.
"The farewell parade is important
because families get to meet the people
we are going with, get a broader idea of
what we're doing and speak to and hear
from senior officers."
Another senior officer at the fare-
well, Comd 9 Bde Brig Steve Smith
said the reservists deploying were the
product of contemporary and high
standard force preparation.
"I'm immensely proud of their dedi-
cation, their obvious commitment and
their willingness to deploy in support
of another country's stability and devel-
opment," Brig Smith said.
"These soldiers represent the very
best qualities of the ADF and I have
every confidence they will acquit them-
selves credibly on their mission."
"While much of their deployment
is working in support of the Royal
Solomon Islands Police and other
police agencies, they will also have
the opportunity to undertake a range
of training that will expand their
experience and service opportunities
on return to Australia."
9 Bde set for Solomons
Family gathering: Cpl Briony McNicol, 144 Sig Sqn, says
goodbye to her family (above) as she gets ready to deploy to
Photos by Capt Steve Turner.
'Goodbye Poppy': Pte Paul Groom and his niece, Poppy Joy
SASR go in front of camera
SASR has lifted the veil of secrecy
for the first time in 25 years to film its
The two-part documentary is due to
air on SBS, beginning December 7.
Prospero Productions is producing
the film, entitled SAS --The Search For
Prospero has previously worked with
the ADF on Australian Pirate Patrol and
The seven-strong film crew attended
every day of selection.
They worked a rotation system to
keep up with the candidates.
"Everything about the project was
very intense," says Director, Russell
"It would have been impossible to
capture the action unless we were com-
pletely embedded with the regiment so
creature comforts went out the window
and bunk-beds and communal showers
had to be embraced.
I had a great deal of admiration for
the candidates we were following and
always enjoyed talking to them.
It was a great privilege to lead the
team who captured this truly incredible
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