Canberra Air Force Cadet honoured with Gallipoli pilgrimage
16 April 2015
Australian Air Force Cadet Flight Sergeant Felicity West, aged 16, from Canberra was today presented with the prestigious Eleanore Tibble Memorial Pilgrimage Scholarship for 2015 in Canberra.
The scholarship sponsors an AAFC Cadet to travel with the Australian Defence Force contingent to Gallipoli to participate in Anzac Day commemorations.
Felicity has been chosen to represent the AAFC from more than 7000 cadets around Australia.
“I am absolutely honoured and touched to be representing such an amazing organisation in one of Australia’s most important milestones. I still can’t believe that I will be standing there, where our brave heroes sacrificed all for our country,” Felicity said.
“Even after being awarded this scholarship, I am still learning so much that I didn’t already know about Gallipoli, and World War One. I have the deepest respect for the Australians, New Zealanders, Allied troops and the Turkish troops that sacrificed all at Gallipoli.”
Felicity will be wearing her Great Grandfather’s medals in Gallipoli; someone who inspired her from a very young age.
Felicity has achieved many personal milestones since joining the AAFC in 2012. She has received numerous awards including a Chief of Air Force Flying Scholarship, the Gordon Mercovich Leadership Award, the Long Tan Leadership Award and a recent promotion to Cadet Flight Sergeant.
However, none of these achievements compare to the adventure she is about to undertake.
“I have always had a passion in making sure the younger community has known about our Anzacs, and I am still numb to realise that I will have the opportunity to show my respect for my personal heroes at such an important time,” she said.
“So many died so young and so tragically, and it has become a personal goal of mine to ensure that the youths of today are educated about their sacrifices so they are never forgotten.”
The Eleanore Tibble Memorial Pilgrimage Scholarship was created in memory of Cadet Sergeant Eleanore Tibble, who died in Tasmania in 2000.
“I not only want to represent the AAFC on my trip, but also Eleanore Tibble. She was so young, and I believe it is fit to honour her as well in my travels. I will be laying a handmade poppy on behalf of Eleanore, just to let her know that whilst I did not meet her, I will be thinking of her.”
The Australian Air Force Cadets is a youth development organisation that is administered and actively supported by the Royal Australian Air Force, for boys and girls aged from 13 to 18 who have an interest in aviation- powered flying, gliding, adventure, leadership, music, teamwork, bush survival and field craft.
Imagery of Cadet Flight Sergeant Felicity West is available on the Defence Imagery Gallery at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20150915
Further information about the Australian Air Force Cadets can be found at: www.aafc.org.au
Defence Media Operations (02) 6127 1999