Chief of Navy congratulates Group Bravery Citation recipients
21 August 2011
The Chief of Navy today congratulated 18 Australian Defence Force personnel who were recognised by the Governor General for their involvement in the Suspected Irregular Entry Vessel (SIEV) 36 tragedy in 2009.
Included in this group were 15 Navy people who were awarded a Group Bravery Citation for their involvement in rescuing passengers and Navy crews after SIEV 36 exploded near Ashmore Reef off Western Australia on 16 April 2009.
One of these personnel, Leading Seaman Matthew Keogh, also received the Bravery Medal for his contribution.
Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Ray Griggs praised the efforts of all personnel onboard the Armidale Class Patrols Boats Childers and Albany as well as those at Northern Command Headquarters in Darwin for their efforts on the tragic day.
“This is well-deserved recognition for all the Navy people who worked hard to save lives on that tragic day,” VADM Griggs said.
“We should all be proud of their efforts and, on behalf of the Royal Australian Navy, I congratulate them for their work both on this day and throughout their careers.
“Both Childers and Albany continually manoeuvred with their rigid-hulled inflatable boats to rescue as many people as possible. Ultimately, all nine Defence Force personnel onboard the SIEV at the time, and 44 passengers and crew of the vessel were recovered. Sadly, five people died and a number sustained serious injuries.
“This award is also recognition for all the men and women who put themselves on the line when they pull on the uniform and undertake Operation RESOLUTE in northern Australian waters. It is a task that is undertaken every single day, and one that requires great persistence, dedication and professionalism,” VADM Griggs said.
The citation praises the entire group for reacting “swiftly and professionally” when rescuing people in the water and onboard the burning vessel.
List of recipients:
Corporal Bradley Joseph BENDEICH (Army)
Able Seaman Quinton Royston BOORMAN
Leading Seaman Kirsty-Lee BROWN
Petty Officer Thomas Raphael DAWE
Chief Petty Officer Dean Andrew FAUNT
Able Seaman Tomas David GALLANT
Petty Officer Paul Christopher HETHERINGTON
Sergeant Sharon Louise JAGER (Air Force)
Leading Seaman Matthew Thomas KEOGH
Able Seaman Jason Cordell LIST
Able Seaman Michael Alexander LORDAN
Chief Petty Officer Shane Gregory McCALLUM
Leading Seaman Maria Therese MATHEWS
Leading Seaman Adrian Carl MEDBURY
Leading Aircraftman Thomas Stephen NORTON (Air Force)
Able Seaman Mathew Ross PIERCE
Leading Seaman Daniel Anthony RYAN
Able Seaman (now Midshipman) Christopher Alexander SAVILLE