Former Hutt Valley Local Set to Participate in RNZAF Exercise
18 June 2014
Former Hutt Valley local, Aircraftman (AC) Janice Bond is ‘coming home’ for an Air Force flying training activity based out of Trentham Military Camp 19 – 25 June 2014.
“I am an aircraft mechanic usually based at Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Base Ohakea”, said AC Bond.
“My job is to maintain the Iroquois helicopters to make sure they operate reliably. Going away on trips is a pretty fun part of my job, and it is really nice to have the chance to return home.”
The exercise, which will be run by 3 Squadron, will involve daytime and evening flying with RNZAF Iroquois helicopters taking off and landing at Trentham Military Camp.
“Operating in the city is a really good experience for our maintenance and flying crews. It’s very different to our rural home base at Ohakea with its wide open spaces and special aircraft hangar facilities.
“Exercising in an urban setting prepares us for being able to operate in the city when we are called upon, typically in emergency situations. So it is a vital part of our training”, said AC Bond.
AC Bond joined the RNZAF in 2012 after working in an office job for a few years and deciding she needed a challenge.
“I found the Air Force website one day and it looked like an amazing career opportunity. After talking to a couple of people I was convinced it was the right choice,” said AC Bond.
“I really enjoy my role and have had some really cool experiences, like being winched beneath a helicopter at night time; that was a highlight I’ll remember for a long time.
“With the Iroquois due to be decommissioned in the not too distant future it will be one of the last times to hear the iconic sound of the Iroquois flying through the Hutt Valley.
“But for now my family will know when I’m home in the Hutt and on the job”, said AC Bond.
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