In support of Air Force marking 100 years of service, the Army & Air Force Canteen Service (AAFCANS) commemorated the milestone on March 31.
CAPTION: Veteran Paul Beraldo with Squadron Leaders Robyn Connell and Dane Johnson inside the Army and Air Force Canteen Service at RAAF Laverton.
AAFCANS selected 100 uniformed members from Air Force bases across Australia to enjoy a slice of centenary cake and a hot drink.
Vietnam veteran Paul Beraldo visited RAAF Base Williams to meet the base’s lucky recipients and sample the coffee his company supplies to AAFCANS.
Mr Beraldo served as a private in 11 Platoon, Delta Company, of the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (6RAR), on the battalion’s second tour of Vietnam in 1969. In 1966, 6RAR famously fought in the Battle of Long Tan.
He said it was special to connect with current serving members during Air Force’s centenary.
“It was great sharing my memories of the Australian Service Canteen Organisation in Nui Dat, Vietnam, in 1969, and of my father who worked on Spitfires for the Royal Air Force during the Second World War,” Mr Beraldo said.
“Three generations of my family have served in the ADF, including my son Trooper Mark Beraldo who joined the ADF in 2004 and currently serves with the 4th/19th Light Horse Regiment at Simpson Barracks.”
AAFCANS Managing Director Tim Manic said AAFCANS had been providing a social meeting point and various services to the ADF since 1915.
“AAFCANS is a not-for-profit government entity owned by Army and Air Force,” Mr Manic said.
“Its mission is to contribute to Defence capability by enhancing morale and well-being, supporting base welfare and providing members with convenient access to quality food, beverage and retail items.
“AAFCANS proudly welcomes everyone on base – all ranks, uniformed, non-uniformed, contractors, family members, visitors and international troops.”
Senior ADF Officer at RAAF Base Williams Air Commodore Gregory Frisina said AAFCANS remained a great supporter of the ADF.
“They know what matters to our personnel and we know they stand ready to support us at every turn,” he said.
Official Air Force 100 memorabilia and keepsakes are available to purchase at select AAFCANS locations, with the full range available in the online Air Force shop.