Students from the No. 262 PC-21 Australian Defence Force Pilots Course received their wings and graduated from No. 2 Flying Training School at RAAF Base Pearce on August 13.
CAPTION: The No. 262 PC-21 Australian Defence Force Pilots Course on parade for their graduation. Story by Peta Magorian. Photo by Chris Kershaw.
Flight Lieutenant Anthony Rooke provided a solo aerobatic display that not only highlighted the skills learnt during the course, but also the capability of the Pilatus PC-21 aircraft.
A Welcome to Country and smoking of the pilot’s brevets and graduates was conducted by two Noongar Elders, John McGuire and Shaun Nannup. Mr McGuire acknowledged the significance of the parade ground to pilot graduates.
Seven of the graduates received awards for their achievements during course.
Pilot Officer Jordan Gibb was awarded the‘Fit-to-Fight Physical Training award and the Defence Force Welfare Association Prize for displaying the “Highest Level of Navigational Skills”.
Pilot Officer Lauren Townsend received the Royal Australian Air Force Association (WA Division) trophy for “Most Improved”, Pilot Officer Travis Adkins received the SJ Goble Memorial Trophy for being the “Most Proficient Pilot” and Pilot Officer Stephen Pezet received the G. Scutt/E. Davey Memorial Trophy for “Most Proficient at Instrument Flying”.
Pilot Officer Callum O’Connor received the BP (Australia) Ltd Trophy for the “Highest Aggregate of Academic Marks” and Lieutenant Joel Bulley received the Returned Services League Trophy for “Leadership”.
Pilot Officer Matthew O’Donoghue took out the Pilatus Aircraft Trophy for being “Dux” of the course.
Senior Officer of Western Australia Air Commodore Fiona Dowse addressed the course, acknowledging their achievements and the support networks that allowed them to achieve their goals.
“The support of families, friends, instructors and fellow course mates has been critical in your pursuit of reaching your goal to graduate,” Air Commodore Dowse said.
“This support network will be added to that cadre of support you can now call upon as you take up new challenges as ADF pilots.
“I would encourage you to take every opportunity to learn from others and be ready to fulfill your roles not only as aircrew but also as officers in the Australian Defence Force.”
This milestone marks the beginning of an exciting career for the Air Force’s newest pilots as they move on to join their new squadrons across Australia.