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WORLD NEWS 13
Army August 18, 2011
TEARS and hugs greeted more than
40 soldiers in Townsville after they
returned on August 10 from a suc-
cessful six-month deployment to East
The Queensland-based soldiers were
among 70 troops who arrived in East
Timor in February as part of the Timor-
Leste Aviation Group (TLAG) operating
Black Hawk helicopters.
ISF Commander Col Luke Foster
praised the troops for their dedication and
professionalism during the deployment.
"The members of TLAG provided an
effective and committed capability to the
ISF," Col Foster said.
"Their hard work and dedication has
enabled the ISF to continue its mission
here in East Timor."
The returned troops, the 15th rotation
of the TLAG, have been replaced by a
similar number of personnel deployed as
TLAG 16, drawn mainly from 5 Avn Regt
and 6 Avn Regt.
OC TLAG 15 Maj Bernard Hayes said
his team made a significant contribution
through troop lift and 24-hour aeromedi-
cal evacuation capabilities.
Over the six-month deployment,
TLAG 15 also assisted with humanitar-
ian activities, including participation in
Pacific Partnership 2011, with Black
Hawks delivering medical supplies to
Returning TLAG troops include those
from 5 Avn Regt, 3CER, Army Aviation
Training Centre, Incident Response
Regiment, 9FSB, 25/49RQR, HQ 16 Avn
Bde and 7CSSB.
Job well done: Capt Joel Tunstall on parade with his Timor-Leste Aviation
Group colleagues after being awarded the East Timor Solidarity Medal
before returning to Australia.
Photo by Cpl Melina Mancuso
AN OFF duty reservist and
three of his civilian Tasmanian
emergency service colleagues
have completed their first mis-
sion of training and equipping
East Timor's fire brigade.
Sgt Oliver Breeze, an
instructor with the Adelaide
Universities Regt Tasmanian
Coy and a Regional Officer for
the Tasmanian State Emergency
Service (SES), travelled to East
Timor with three other emergency
workers in early July to train East
Timorese fire brigade members,
known as Bombieros in the art of
road accident rescue.
Their self-funded charity
called Operation Rescue Assist
Timor-Leste 2011, ran a pilot
course in road-side rescue, train-
ing 12 Bombieros in Dili. "The
fire brigades here have limited
resources and fire fighters were
using crowbars and wrenches to
pry people from car wrecks," Sgt
The Bombieros are equipped
with one functional ambulance,
four fire trucks and road crash
rescue equipment consisting of
crowbars and rope.
The four charity members ran
an intensive five-day course.
"Next year we would like to
raise enough money to donate a
second-hand rescue vehicle and
another set of rescue tools," Mr
During their visit, the charity
also donated more than $50,000
worth of rescue equipment to the
Hard yakka: SES volunteer Andrew Pitt shows East Timor
firemen how to extract crash victims from a mangled car.
Photo by Cpl Melina Mancuso
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