Army un­cle and nephew on mis­sion to­gether

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

Fam­ily mem­bers from Mata­mata left New Zealand sep­a­rately but have come to­gether in one of the most re­mote parts of the Solomon Is­lands on Op­er­a­tion Pa­cific Part­ner­ship 13.

War­rant Of­fi­cer 2 Bren­don McDon­ald, and his nephew, Sap­per Chad McDon­ald, both serve in the New Zealand Army in dif­fer­ent roles, but have been work­ing along­side one an­other at Banga Is­land, off Munda in the Solomons.

Sap­per McDon­ald is a car­pen­ter work­ing at an en­gi­neer­ing site at Te­baka Vo­ca­tional School, where the team is im­prov­ing the teacher’s ac­com­mo­da­tion. The duo have also spent sev­eral days to­gether on board the am­phibi­ous sealift ship HMNZS Can­ter­bury.

War­rant Of­fi­cer 2 McDon­ald has been part of the ad­vance party team, as well as the li­ai­son for forces on board the Can­ter­bury.

Pa­cific Part­ner­ship is a multi­na­tional mis­sion in­volv­ing ser­vice peo­ple and civil­ian vol­un­teers from New Zealand, Aus­tralia, France, and the United States, work­ing along­side host na­tions.

The mis­sion is in the fi­nal phase for this year, com­plet­ing a range of med­i­cal, en­gi­neer­ing and com­mu­nity in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment projects in the Solomon Is­lands from July 29 to Au­gust 12.

‘‘It is a great op­por­tu­nity to put all our train­ing into prac­tice, work­ing in a mul­tiser­vice en­vi­ron­ment along­side a wor­thy and friendly host na­tion,’’ War­rant Of­fi­cer 2 McDon­ald said.

‘‘ I’ve en­joyed the chance to im­merse in vil­lage cul­ture and de­vel­op­ing a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of Me­lane­sian cul­ture.

‘‘It’s a good chance to speak pid­gin, and tok tok with the lo­cals.’’

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