Cadet com­man­der steps back in time

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS - By Inge Hansen

THE dis­tant mem­o­ries may be blurry but James Lang can still re­mem­ber what it was like to first board the STS Young En­deav­our when he was just 17 years old.

“It was the first time I’d been on a ship of that size,” he said.

Now the Com­mand­ing Of­fi­cer of the Whit­sun­days Navy Cadet unit – New Train­ing Ship Whit­sun­day, Sub Lieu­tenant Lang said it was a unique ex­pe­ri­ence to be a part of and great to see the ship vis­ing his cur­rent home port this week.

“When I was serv­ing in the Royal Aus­tralian Navy, when I joined in 1987, we had a chance to do week­end du­ties on board the Young En­deav­our when it was berthed in Syd­ney,” he said.

“Ev­ery sec­ond week­end we’d come down to the boat and per­form watch keep­ing du­ties to make sure ev­ery­thing was run­ning smoothly.”

Be­fore start­ing in the navy, at age 14, Sub Lt Lang was a navy cadet him­self for five years.

At age 17, he joined the navy and it was his life for the next 10 years – an ex­pe­ri­ence he de­scribed as in­valu­able.

Mov­ing to the Whit­sun­days 10 years ago, Sub Lt Lang said he loved be­ing able to give back to cadets what he got out of his navy ex­pe­ri­ence.

“I get to share with them the en­thu­si­asm and ad­ven­ture and the skills that I was taught,” he said.

On Tues­day, 24 youths from all around Aus­tralia, in­clud­ing Air­lie lo­cal Ellen John­son, de­parted Abell Point Ma­rina on board the STS Young En­deav­our for it’s 11-13 day voy­age to Cairns.

Sub Lt Lang said the youths would love the ex­pe­ri­ence and should savour ev­ery mo­ment.

“You will al­ways re­mem­ber your time when you’re serv­ing on the Young En­deav­our,” he said.

For more in­for­ma­tion about NTS Whit­sun­day visit www.tswhit­sun­day.com/ and for more on the STS Young En­deav­our visit www. youn­gen­deav­our.gov.au.

“It was the first time I’d been on a ship of that size”

Photo Inge Hansen.

BACK IN TIME: The STS Young En­deav­our was the first ship of its size that Sub Lieu­tenant James Lang boarded when he was 17 years old.

Photo: HeliTaxi.

AWAY WE GO: The STS Young En­deav­our de­parted on Tues­day with its new youth crew on board.

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