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Army July 5, 2
OC's signaller gets a hook while taking radio message from troops in contact
Cpl Mark Doran
WHEN an RSM calls a digger
front and centre it is normally
an ominous occasion.
Troops from Patrol Base
Hadrian were outside the wire in
contact with insurgents on March
10 when Task Force RSM WO1
Ian D'Arcy entered the command
post and called forward signaller
LCpl Nick Hilton.
LCpl Hilton is the OC's sig-
naller and has been with 8/9RAR
since the battalion was reraised
He thought he was in trouble
at first because he hadn't a chance
to shave that morning.
"Halfway through the contact
there was a lull in the battle and I
was promoted by the CO, Lt-Col
Kahlil Fegan," LCpl Hilton said.
"It was definitely a highlight
of my deployment to Afghanistan
to be promoted while there was
a contact in progress, but getting
out and conducting a few patrols
has also been fantastic.
"We had a clearance patrol
in the Tangi Valley recently and,
although it wasn't major, it was
a demanding patrol because of
the challenges involved such as a
Stepping up: CO MTF 4 Lt-Col Kahlil Fegan (left) promotes LCpl Nick Hilton at Patrol Base Hadrian during a lull in a battle involving
Australian troops from the base.
Photo by Cpl Raymond Vance
AN AUSTRALIAN Chinook was damaged in a hard
landing during combat support operations in Kandahar
province on June 22.
The incident occurred at a coalition force patrol
base in Kandahar province.
Commander JTF 633 Maj-Gen Stuart Smith said an
aircrewman suffered a minor injury in the landing.
"All other personnel on board underwent precau-
tionary health checks following the incident," he said.
The aircrewman was expected to return to full
Maj-Gen Smith said a damage assessment and
recovery team went to the site of the hard landing.
"The teams have secured the Chinook in its loca-
tion and an investigation into the hard landing is under
way," he said.
"Extent of the damage to the aircraft is being
"The Chinook will be moved to Kandahar Air Field
by the safest and most economical means."
The aircraft was conducting a combat support mis-
sion, transporting personnel and equipment to various
locations in southern Afghanistan.
The hard landing is not believed to have been
caused by enemy fire.
in hard landing
Crew members safe: A Chinook was damaged
in a hard landing at a coalition patrol base in
Kandahar province. File photo by Cpl Hamish Paterson
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