Our People in WAJason Middleton - Pirate Patrol for Gladstone Officer
Gladstone’s Glenys and Allan Middleton won’t see their son Jason for a few months but there’s a good reason — and they couldn’t be more proud of him.
Jason is now on patrol with his shipmates aboard HMAS Toowoomba off the Horn of Africa.
Jason attended Gladstone South State School before studying at Rockhampton Grammar School and graduating in 1992.
Jason then gained an electrical engineering degree at the Australian Defence Force Academy. Now he’s a Lieutenant Commander and head of HMAS Toowoomba’s Weapons Electrical Engineering Department.
“Electrical engineers are responsible for the ship’s brains and muscles - the weapons, radar, sonar, communications and computing systems,” Jason said.
“A typical day includes making sure our weapons and communications equipment is in top condition, managing around 30 people in my department, and keeping the Commanding Officer informed of any changes to the ship’s capabilities.”
Since joining the Navy, Jason has visited Japan, Korea, China, South East Asia, Gallipoli for the 90th anniversary of the ANZAC landing and England for the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar.
He also spent three years with the United States Navy in Florida, where he was awarded a Marine Corps Commendation Medal for work on unmanned vehicle communications and project management.
This is Jason’s first operational deployment to the Middle East. He’s part of the ADF’s contribution to countering piracy in the Gulf of Aden, and aiding maritime security.“Ill be away from home six months and can’t wait to enjoy a belated double birthday with my children; Adam, age four, and Luke, age one, when I return home. It’s a long time to be away from loved ones, but thanks to their support and understanding, the sacrifice will be worth it,” Jason said.