Home' Army News : June 6th 2013 Contents Army June 6, 2013
Like father, like son
Sgt Jack Heller has been promoted to join his father
Tony as a warrant officer, Michael Brooke reports.
WHEN WO2 Tony Heller
watched his young son play
soldiers in the backyard, he
didn't think it would lead to
a military career.
So it was a proud moment for WO2
Heller when his son, Jack, joined the Army
in 2001, following in his footsteps.
Sgt Jack Heller, of 17 CSS Bde, has now
joined his father in rank as well as service,
being promoted to WO2 at a ceremony at
Randwick Barracks on April 17.
"There can be very few more satisfy-
ing feelings for a father than to see his son
not just follow him into a very challenging
profession, but to also see him achieve such
well-earned success," said the senior WO2
Col Edward Smeaton, Chief of Staff 17
CSS Bde, and also the Army Pay Head of
Corps, conducted the ceremony.
"This promotion ceremony is as special
for the Army as it is for the Heller family. It
brings father and son together at the same
rank," Col Smeaton said.
The newly promoted WO2 Heller said
he hoped he was up to the challenge of
being a good warrant officer.
"It's always an honour because promo-
tion is about accepting higher responsibili-
ties and living up to the expectations of the
system that promoted you," he said.
WO2 Heller, 32, said joining the Army
12 years ago had a lot to do with his father's
"My dad was a big inspiration as were
other family members who served in the
ADF in times of war and peace," he said.
Senior WO2 Heller flew to Sydney for
the ceremony from Karratha, where he is
posted to the Pilbara Regt as the Regimental
Training Warrant Officer.
"There was just no way that I wasn't
going to be here for his promotion," WO2
"As nice as it would be to be able to take
some of the credit for how he's turned out, I
have to admit that most of that would have
to go to Jack's mum.
"Tragically, she died in 2011 but had she
been here for this -- and who knows, maybe
she was -- I know it would have been one of
her proudest moments, too."
Senior WO2 Heller joined the Army 30
years ago, inspired by his father who served
in the Navy during the Korean War.
"My guess is Jack just picked up on that
concept of service as he was growing up,"
"Like many soldiers with kids, I pur-
posely didn't want to push any of them
towards service careers, so I don't really
consider that Jack 'followed in my foot-
steps' as such.
"I reckon he just figured out for himself
that it was a worthwhile thing to do and as a
result, he eventually made his own decision
to join up."
The younger WO2 Heller's son, Jacob,
age 4, may also observe the family tradition
in a few years' time, but missed the promo-
tion ceremony because of preschool. WO2
Heller's wife Jasmine and baby daughter
Kyrah were by his side for the promotion. A family affair: WO2 Tony Heller congratulates his son WO2 Jack Heller on his promotion. Jack was
joined by wife Jasmine and daughter Kyrah at the ceremony in Sydney.
Photo by Michael Brooke
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