Sunshine Coast local and self-proclaimed bookworm, Signaller Jacob Gatehouse, has gone from reading military history to creating his own while deployed in the Middle East Region.

Signaller Gatehouse is the first member of his family to have joined the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and is now deployed to the Taji Military Complex in Iraq with the Theatre Communication Group.

His role in Iraq is similar to that of neurons or nerve cells in the body by providing communication and signals to the brain – he maintains the vital link that facilitates Task Group Taji 10’s communications network back to Australia.

“I help provide and maintain communication between Australian and Task Group Taji 10 so that we, as the ADF, can continue our mission of assisting Iraqi Security Forces,” Signaller Gatehouse said.

“In order for the ADF to train the Iraqi Security Forces it is important that the line of communication between Task Group Taji and Australia is clear and functioning.”

“Working alongside our coalition counterparts and seeing how they achieve the job has been great.”

The Theatre Communication Group is far from a one-man band and Signaller Gatehouse works alongside coalition partners from the United States, United Kingdom and New Zealand to maintain the network.

“Working alongside our coalition counterparts and seeing how they achieve the job has been great,” Signaller Gatehouse said.

“I love the fact that my job challenges me on a daily basis and the operational environment I have been placed into has allowed me to learn and develop new skills.”

After deployment, Signaller Gatehouse will return home to Buderim on the Sunshine Coast, where he is looking forward to seeing his parents, sleeping in his own bed and eating a home-cooked meal.

“Being away from family has been a challenge, but nothing can beat the incredible mateship I’ve enjoyed during this deployment,” Signaller Gatehouse said.