Monday, December 18, 2006

HMAS 'Kanimbla' returns home in shadow of Black Hawk tragedy

photo John Sheil

Australian troops have returned home after a 45-day deployment on board HMAS Kanimbla.

The 800 soldiers were on stand-by in waters off Fiji during political unrest in the country.

The deployment was marred by the Black Hawk tragedy late last month that killed Townsville pilot Captain Mark Bingley and SAS Trooper Joshua Porter.

Major General Ash Power says those who witnessed the tragedy continued to work professionally.

"They just got on with the job," he said.

"They were quickly into the water to rescue those involved in the accident. They immediately embarked on to the search for the missing soldier.

"They also remained focus on the job at hand, the mission was to be there postured to go in to Fiji if required and they remained focused on the mission so I couldn't be prouder of them."

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