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Army July 7, 2011
By Sgt Brian Hartigan
AUSTRALIAN Army aviators
proved to be the cream of the
crop in service-rifle shooting at
AASAM in May -- rising to the
top with just a touch of expert
coaching and a healthy serve of
The team, drawn from across
16 Avn Bde at short notice, were
crowned Australian Army Service
Rifle Champions at AASAM from
May 5-18, following an intense
round of shooting under pressure.
Team coach and captain
WO2 Terry Hangan said he was
immensely proud of his team's skill
and dedication to the task.
"This team was literally cobbled
together at the last minute and only
came together for practice three
days before AASAM started," WO2
"In fact, I don't think any of
them had fired a live round in the
12 months before they came togeth-
er for this.
"Yet they beat all other arms
corps and all the manoeuvre bri-
gades in taking out the service-rifle
"And they didn't just scrape it in
either -- they were a good 70 points
ahead of second placed 1 Bde."
WO2 Hangan said 16 Avn Bde
also came second in the Brigade
Teams Weapons Championship -- an
aggregate of service rifle, pistol and
The team: Back (from left): WO2 Glen Frew, Cfn Greg Hamilton,
Tpr Shane Nash, Cfn Thomas George, Sgt Sean Glendenning, Sig
Timothy Segner, WO2 Dustin Hodgson. Front: Sgt Matthew Evans,
Lt Ariel Armstrong, WO2 Terry Hangan, Cfn Joseph Colfs.
machine gun shoots -- with several
other notable individual achieve-
ments to boot.
"Cfn Joseph Colfs, for exam-
ple, placed first in the service-rifle
night-vision shoot and in the close-
quarter practice but, even more
impressive, third in the all-impor-
tant Champion Shot of the Army.
"Cfn Greg Hamilton and Sgt
Sean Glendenning did well indi-
vidually too, placing fourth in the
400m deliberate and fourth in the
400m snap practices respectively.
"Sgt Glendenning actually took
away five individual medals.
"But of course, those shoots
were part of a team effort that saw
both 16 Bde and 5 Avn Regt come
second in the LF6 teams aggregate
for brigades and units."
WO2 Hangan attributed his
team's success to an ability to con-
centrate over a long and intense
"In the service rifle match, for
example, the shoot consisted of firing
from different positions from 400m
down to 100m then back to 400m."
He said there was skill and tal-
ent in his team, which was rec-
ognised by Cfn Colfs' and Cfn
Thomas George's selection in the
Champion Shot development team.
Aviators rise to challenge
Secretary on the street
By Cpl Melanie Schinkel
A BORROWED sleeping bag was
all that kept Defence Secretary
Ian Watt from hypothermia in the
minus-2-degree Canberra cold
as he joined in the St Vincent de
Paul Society's CEO Sleepout on
"About 4am the temperature
dropped below zero, but Lt-Gen
Ken Gillespie had lent me an Army
winter sleeping bag, so that kept me
pretty toasty up until then," Dr Watt
"By 7am I had slept for four
hours, so I was tired and grouchy. I
couldn't wait to have a shower."
The annual Vinnies CEO
Sleepout takes place in capital cit-
ies across Australia and challenges
business and community leaders to
experience homelessness firsthand
for one night. The event raises mil-
lions for the homeless and helps
alter widespread public perceptions
More than 105,000 Australians
are homeless and in 2006 the
Australian Bureau of Statistics esti-
mated that about 50,256 people are
forced to sleep on the street every
Dr Watt raised $17,365 for the
cause, which placed him as the
fourth highest ACT-based fundrais-
er. The national event has raised
more than $4 million.
Dr Watt said 973 CEOs were
involved nationwide and 152 of
them participated with him at the
National Museum of Australia from
7pm on June 16 to 7am the next
"I've always thought the CEO
Sleepout was a great idea. It's very
easy for some CEOs to donate
money, but this actually required
CEOs to do something personal that
inconvenienced them," Dr Watt said.
"In this case, actions spoke loud-
er than dollars because the CEO was
required to get actively involved,
which is rare among charity events."
In 2008, the Australian Institute
of Health and Welfare discovered
that 54 per cent of homeless people
seeking supported accommodation
were turned away. Although Vinnies
operates a wide range of homeless
services across the country, many
areas remain without specialist
homeless housing services.
Dr Watt said the aim of the
Vinnies CEO Sleepout was not only
to raise funds and awareness but
also to promote an end to homeless-
"The message of this event was
that intervention does help -- you
can make a significant difference by
donating a relatively small amount
"Participating gave me a better
understanding of what it's like to
be homeless, which is quite frankly
He said he was pleased to
be involved in the event along-
side a number of other Australian
Secretaries and Agency Heads.
"I'm thankful for the level of
support I received from Defence and
"These days, people have a lot
of commitments on their pay pack-
ets, but I'm glad they found ways
to make small donations. Donations
are still open if people want to con-
tribute and I'm looking forward
to participating in the event again
If you would like to support Dr Watt by
making a donation or want to find out
more about the Vinnies CEO Sleepout visit
All money raised goes directly towards the
ongoing provision of Vinnies' homeless
services across the country.
FIVE ways donations help to bat-
$50 can provide a meal and
educational resource for a dis-
$100 can help ensure a family
keeps its power on this winter.
$200 provides emergency
accommodation and food to a
family in crisis.
$500 could relocate and
establish a homeless person
into one of Vinnies' homeless
$1000 would pay the rent for a
family facing eviction.
Cold comfort: Defence Secretary Dr Ian Watt packs his sleeping bag after
spending a night on the street to raise money for homeless people.
Photo by LAC Bill Solomou
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