Sapper Jacob Moerland and Sapper Darren Smith were returned to Australia today to be met by family and colleagues in a solemn and dignified ceremony at RAAF Base Amberley.
|Bearer party and escorts, carry Sapper Jacob Moerland and Sapper Darren Smith off a Royal Australian Air Force C‑17.|
Source: Australian Department of Defence
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Soldiers from Jacob and Darren’s unit, the 2nd Combat Engineer Regiment (2CER), formed an honour guard and bearer party to receive and carry their caskets from the C‑17 Globemaster aircraft to their families.
Minister for Defence, Senator John Faulkner; Shadow Minister for Defence, Personnel and Science Bob Baldwin representing the Shadow Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston; Mr Shayne Neumann MP, Member for Blair; The Chief of Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston; The Chief of Army, Lieutenant General Ken Gillespie, Commander 7th Brigade, Brigadier Paul McLachlan; and Commanding Officer 2CER, Lieutenant Colonel John Carey were in attendance.
General Gillespie extended his heartfelt sympathy to Jacob and Darren’s families and spoke of the importance of the Ramp Ceremony in Australian military tradition, where the Australian Army welcomed home two young Australians who have paid the supreme sacrifice.
“Jacob and Darren chose a military career and represented their country with honour.
“They have been essential members of their team and have been out in front, using their skills to look after their mates, in the way that only young Sappers can. We will remember them very fondly for their sacrifice,” said General Gillespie.
Lieutenant Colonel John Carey expressed his condolences and spoke of the sorrow felt by 2nd Combat Engineer Regiment.
“We are greatly saddened by the loss of Sapper Jacob Moerland and Sapper Darren Smith. These brave men were our comrades, they were our mates. They’re the greatest treasure Australia has. Our thoughts are extended to their families, their friends and their loved ones.”
Ministerial Support and Public Affairs,
Department of Defence,