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Endeavour To Say Thanks And Farewell To Sydney

Endeavour To Say Thanks And Farewell To Sydney On Wednesday.

New Zealand Defence Force
Te Ope Kaatua O Aotearoa
Media statement
23 August 2004

Endeavour to say thanks and farewell to Sydney on Wednesday.

On Wednesday HMNZS ENDEAVOUR will conduct a traditional Maori farewell before departing Fleet Base East in Sydney. The Ship's Company will express their gratitude to all those who helped in the rescue and subsequent care of their fellow crewmembers by conducting a traditional WHAKANGAHAU (Blessing).

Commander David Hedgley, Commanding Officer of Endeavour said "there are just far too many people to thank individually and by conducting this ceremony we believe we will be able to express our true feelings in a uniquely Royal New Zealand Navy way. The friendship and support we have received from both sides of the Tasman has been invaluable and the bonds between the RAN and RNZN have been strengthened".

Endeavour will sail from Sydney on Wednesday morning with mixed emotions, sad that not all who arrived with Endeavour will be departing with her as four ship's company remain in hospital. Two are in St Vincent's hospital and two are in the Navy Hospital at Penguin.

Ends

Backgrounder

Whakangahau - Blessing. A traditional Maori ritual conducted to ease the mind of a person or group both spiritually and physically. A Tohunga (high priest) or Kaumatua (knowledgeable elder) are called upon to conduct the ritual. This is normally conducted on the porch of the ancestral house or in this case on the Quarterdeck or on the Flight deck of Endeavour.

Members of the ship's company will perform a haka and a waiata (song) during the ceremony to express the feelings of the ship's company and to thank all personnel that helped in the rescue including the Australian Defence Force (Navy) personnel and NSW emergency services that attended to those injured in the accident. Crewmembers from HMA Ships Tobruk, Success, Manoora and Sydney, who assisted in the rescue, are expected to attend.

HMNZS ENDEAVOUR the Navy's tanker with a crew of 49 arrived Sydney on Friday August 13 for a port visit. Endeavour sails on Wednesday to Singapore to continue her exercises with the Royal Navy, the Royal Australian Navy, Republic of Singapore Navy and the Royal Malaysian Navy.

ENDS

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