Growing up at Old Bar on the NSW mid-north coast, Corporal Matthew Parker spent his spare time playing tennis and hiking.

Corporal Parker’s dad gave him two choices; Scouts or Air Force Cadets. He chose Air Force Cadets, his inspiration coming from his great grandfather, an Air Force Catalina flight engineer during World War II.

“I followed my dream joining the ADF as a medic with an interest in helping people back to good health,” Corporal Parker said.

“As an RAAF medic I have a huge responsibility of the holistic management in health care for personnel when deployed on operations and exercises. 

“Some situations do test my clinical skills, with my aim always to deliver best care.” 

Corporal Parker said the best part of his career was the interaction with people and working with amazing medical staff. 

“My first posting was to No. 2 Expeditionary Health Squadron. I have deployed on numerous exercises and deployed to the Middle East as a part of the Airbase Operations Unit,” he said.  

“I was involved with many tactical aeromedical evacuations in and out of Iraq.” 

With a people-strong focus of the Air Force Centenary, throughout 2020 and 2021 exceptional members who have contributed to the Air Force will be featured on www.airforce.gov.au/100 and Corporal Parker is a fine example of the thousands of people who make up our Air Force.

Planning is underway for the commemoration of the Royal Australian Air Force’s formation in March 1921 and further information may be obtained at www.airforce.gov.au/100.

You can watch Corporal Parker's story here.