Saturday, October 02, 2010

Royal Australian Navy Vietnam Veterans Receive Award from CNO

By Chief Mass Communication Specialist (SW/AW) Tiffini Jones Vanderwyst, Chief of Naval Operations Public Affairs

SYDNEY (NNS) -- The chief of naval operations (CNO) and his counterpart of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) presented long overdue awards at the HMAS Waterhen to veterans for serving in Vietnam during a ceremony Oct. 1.

CNO Adm. Gary Roughead, along with Chief of Navy, Royal Australian Navy Vice Adm. Russ Crane, had the honor of presenting two United States Navy Unit Commendations to 43 members of the Clearance Diving Team (CDT) 3 and their family members for their service to Australia in the Vietnam War alongside the United States Navy.

Roughead expressed the importance of recognizing the dedication and the commitment of our service members around the world and their contributions for serving in harms way that give our nations the liberty and freedom we have today.

"United States Sailors have many, many reasons to admire and to thank our enduring and stalwart shipmates in the Royal Australian Navy, and the exploits of CDT 3 in the inland waters of Vietnam four decades ago are of a piece with the shared dedication Australian and American sailors have demonstrated since the War in the Pacific," Roughead said.

"My hope that today's ceremony typifies our mutual commitment to that end, conveys how our sailors' achievements live on in our memories," Roughead continued, "and how they will more brightly stand in the annals of naval history for future generations to discover."

Crane said the RAN motto, "United and Undoubted," speaks of CDT 3's service during the Vietnam War and the significant mark they left in naval history.

"Although the smallest unit Australia deployed numbering no more than six at the time, they built on WWII's lessons in bomb disposal and mind clearance to create a enviable reputation for extreme courage, innovation and expertise."

CNO said the relationship between the U.S. Navy and the Royal Australian Navy has always been and will continue to be a strong maritime partnership with a shared dedication in the Pacific and around the world's oceans.

The ceremony recognized the 43 members of CDT 3 for their contributions to the Vietnam War between 1968 and 1973 as Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit Pacific (Teams 21 and 35).

This Day in Naval History - Oct. 01

From the Navy News Service

1800 - U.S. schooner Experiment captures French schooner Diana.
1844 - The Naval Observatory, headed by Lt. Matthew Fontaine Maury, occupies its first permanent quarters.
1874 - Supply Corps purser Lt. J.Q. Barton is given leave to enter service of new Japanese Navy to organize a pay department and instruct Japanese about accounts. He served until Oct. 1, 1877, when he again became a purser in the U.S. Navy.
1880 - John Phillip Sousa becomes leader of Marine Corps Band.
1928 - The first class at school for enlisted Navy and Marine Corps radio intercept operators (The "On the Roof Gang") is held.
1937 - Patrol aviation is transferred to Aircraft Scouting Force, a re-established type command. With the change, five patrol wings were established as a separate administrative command over their squadrons.
1946 - Truculent Turtle lands at Columbus, Ohio, breaking the world's record for distance without refueling during flight of 11,235 miles.
1949 - Military Sea Transportation Service is activated.
1955 - USS Forrestal (CVA 59), the first of post-war super carriers, is commissioned.
1979 - President Jimmy Carter awards the Congressional Space Medal of Honor to Neil Armstrong, retired Navy Capt. Charles Conrad Jr., retired Marine Col. John Glenn and retired Rear Adm. Alan Shepard Jr.
1980 - USS Cochrane (DDG 21) rescues 104 Vietnamese refugees 620 miles east of Saigon.
1990 - USS Independence (CV 62) enters Persian Gulf (first carrier in Persian Gulf since 1974).