The Commanding Officer of 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Simon Croft, was pleasantly surprised to see an M1A1 Abrams Tank occupying his parking space on Gallipoli Barracks.
CAPTION: Sergeant Craig Cole, left, Warrant Officer Class 2 Matthew Watt, Corporal Joshua Cavanagh and Lieutenant Colonel Simon Croft stand in front of the M1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank. Photo: Trooper Jonathan Goedhart.
Celebrating the end of Exercise Diamond Catalyst with a barbecue at the regiment’s Soldiers’ Club, Lieutenant Colonel Croft auctioned off his parking spot for a week to raise money for Legacy.
Soldiers of the 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment put in a bid for $400, winning the spot and the freedom to park whatever vehicle they desired.
Lieutenant Colonel Croft said it was a reminder of the special bond between both units.
“There’s traditionally a close relationship between Mechanised Infantry and Armoured Cavalry Regiment, particularly with the tanks,” Lieutenant Colonel Croft said.
“We work closely with our peers at 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment and having one of their tanks in my car space is a great reminder of that.”
Lieutenant Colonel Croft said the combined unit social functions were important for team cohesion.
“We haven’t spent as much time together this year due to various domestic commitments and we wanted to rekindle those relationships between the battle groups, particularly with the tank troop,” he said.
“We recognise that while tempo might be achieved by commanders making decisions faster than our adversary, where we achieve speed on the objective is where soldiers know each other and have mutual bonds of respect and it starts with some of these little activities we host on barracks.
“A soldier from 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, has already seen fit to mark the tank as one of our own, stenciling a Blue Dog against one of its side skirts.”
Lieutenant Colonel Croft’s car park will be available for bidding at the regiment’s Soldiers’ Club functions for the rest of the year.