As a boy, Leading Aircraftman Anthony Everitt admired the F/A-18A Hornets that flew past the headlands near his home in Tea Gardens, NSW.
Now, he is an avionics technician in the Royal Australian Air Force.
Leading Aircraftman Everitt said it was a family tradition of service that inspired him to start his career.
“My grandfather was in the RAAF and served through World War II and in Korea. He took me to my first air show,” Leading Aircraftman Everitt said.
“I remember when I first started working on the Hawk 127 and saying to myself, ‘Wow, I am doing this; this is my job now'.”
He is deployed to the Middle East region maintaining one of Australia’s KC-30A multi-role tanker transports that does air-to-air refuelling missions with coalition partners.
“My job is to work on all of the electrical and communication systems on the aircraft, including some of the most advanced air-to-air refuelling systems in the world,” Leading Aircraftman Everitt said.
“You work in small teams here so you need to work out everyone’s strengths and weaknesses early on and work with them to get the job done safely and sustainably.”
He said it was vital for the Australian team in the Middle East to do the job properly because other coalition aircraft depended on them for mission support.
Australians work alongside the United States Air Force in the air and on the tarmac, and Leading Aircraftman Everitt said he enjoyed sharing stories with coalition partners on the flight line.
“I had someone ask me this morning what ‘cobber’ meant and if he should be excited or offended when an Australian said ‘Hey, cobber’ to him.”
The KC-30A deployment continues Australia’s contribution to coalition operations as part of Operation Okra. It supports the US-led Operation Inherent Resolve, the international effort against Daesh in Iraq.