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October 28, 2010
By MIDN James Stahlhut
LAST month three midshipmen par-
ticipated in an Australian Defence
Force Academy battlefield study
tour of Papua New Guinea.
In addition to allowing the group
(comprising MIDNs Rebecca Holmes,
Justin Pogson and myself) to retrace
the World War II steps of Australian
soldiers, the tour included a study
of the Allied and Japanese naval
activities in the New Guinea cam-
paign, including the key Battle of the
Assisted by Phillip Bradley, a mil-
itary historian specialising in the area,
the study tour examined the desperate
Australian defence of the strategical-
ly-important airfield of Wau, located
between Lae and Port Moresby.
Then, over a period of seven
days, the group trekked to the coast-
al village of Salamaua, which was a
Japanese stronghold during the war.
Along the track the group had to
negotiate dense jungle environments
and encountered many remnants of
Early in the trek the group came
across a downed USAAF B-17 that
had been involved in one of many
raids launched against Japanese con-
voys trying to reinforce Salamaua.
MIDN Justin Pogson said the trip
was challenging but tremendously
enjoyable and rewarding.
"It greatly enhanced our under-
standing of a significant action in
Australia's military and naval history,"
MIDN Pogson said.
MIDN broaden horizons
REWARDING: (L-R) ADFA MIDN James Stahlhut, Rebecca Holmes
and Justin Pogson examine a downed WWII USAAF B-17 in Morobe
marks 20-year milestone
By Michael Brooke
WHEN CPO Simon Butterworth was
approaching the dual milestones of
20 years in the RAN and turning
41, he decided to do something sig-
nificant not just for himself and the
RAN, but also for charity.
To mark the milestones, especial-
ly the life-changing decision to join
the Navy, CPO Butterworth jogged
and shuffled 190km from HMAS
Albatross (CAPT Stefan King) to
HMAS Kuttabul (CMDR Christine
Clarke) in exactly 30 hours.
CPO Butterworth, a cryptolo-
gist linguist with the RAN Tactical
Electronic Warfare Support Section,
performed the run from Nowra to
Sydney's Woolloomooloo completely
"Most people might have celebrat-
ed with a few beers, but the run was
a good way to mark the 20-year mile-
stone, because joining the Navy was
the best decision I have ever made,"
"The run also enabled me to raise
money for the PCYC (local Police
charity) which provides breakfasts for
schools and youth establishments," he
With only a banana for his break-
fast, CPO Butterworth began his run
from Albatross' gangway on October
15, with the CO, SWO and many well-
wishers cheering his departure.
Although his iPod died just
three hours into his voyage, CPO
Butterworth plodded on relentlessly,
snacking on carbo-gels and electrlite
drinks which gave him the sustenance
to keep 'shuffling' through the night --
until he reached Sydney's city limits.
"I got to the city limits at about
5am when the weather turned particu-
larly nasty, which created the tempta-
tion to simply jump on a train for the
remainder of the journey to Kings
Cross," he said.
"But I'm glad I kept going
because this is a milestone I can look
back on with pride."
Navy recognised CPO
Butterworth's milestone by fast-track-
ing his 20-year service certificate,
which was presented by Kuttabul's
CO, CMDR Christine Clarke, on the
flight deck of HMAS Parramatta dur-
ing the Navy Week open day.
"This is really an unexpected sur-
prise, but the real reward is the privi-
lege of being able to have served two
decades -- and hopefully longer -- in
the RAN," CPO Butterworth said.
The local media also recognised
the significance of CPO Butterworth's
190km jog and shuffle and conducted
numerous radio and print interviews,
raising awareness of Navy among
important public stakeholders.
MILESTONE: CPO Simon
Butterworth begins his unas-
sisted run from HMAS Albatross
to HMAS Kuttabul to celebrate 20
years of service in the RAN.
Photo: ABIS Justin Brown
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