COVID-19 may have put a stop to the march through Brisbane on Reserve Forces Day in July, but it didn’t stop the annual recognition of the work of reservists.
Lord Mayor of Brisbane Councillor Adrian Schrinner and Australian Reserve Forces Day council member Captain Bob Hume RAN (retd) made sure the Reserves were acknowledged with a service at the Brisbane City Hall on October 14.
Reserve Forces Day was first held in 1998 when 18,000 past and 4000 serving members of the Reserves paraded in 12 cities around Australia.
Deputy Commander Joint Task Group 629.3 Commander John Quinn, who also is a reservist, was invited by Councillor Schrinner to be the guest speaker at the Brisbane event.
“Defence’s support enabled Queensland Police to be freed from quarantine tasks during Operation COVID-19 Assist in Queensland to do their primary law enforcement work,” he said.
“For the first five months, the majority of Joint Task Group 629.3 personnel were reservists.
“About 921 Defence Reserves were assigned to the task force, with about half serving between 15 and 60 days.”
Commander Quinn, who in civilian life is a director in the Electrical Safety Office within the Queensland Office of Industrial Relations, acknowledged the Lord Mayor and Brisbane City Council for their support of Reserve Forces Day.
“Most of us would not be able to provide Reserve service without the patience of our families and the support of our employers, such as Brisbane City Council and mine,” he said.
Royal Australian Air Force Reserve Corporal Demi Hobl also attended the Brisbane event.
She served full-time for a period in the triservice Joint Task Group 629.3 headquarters in an administrative role, supporting headquarters' staff and more than 550 personnel, including 210 reservists.
“I have enjoyed working as a reservist while studying a Master of Project Management at the University of New South Wales,” she said.
“My deployment has been an invaluable professional development opportunity and a highlight of my Air Force career.
“I am grateful to all those who have supported my service, particularly my partner back home, my UNSW lecturers and especially my unit.”