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Jason Duvall - Queanbeyan

When a Queanbeyan local left his hairdressing salon in Canberra to join the Navy he never expected to be doing his old trade on a warship in the middle of the Arabian Sea.

Able Seaman (AB) Marine Logistics - Personnel Jason Duvall never has time to sit still on HMAS Melbourne because he always has something to do, and not always with his clippers.

Melbourne is currently patrolling the Middle East Region on Operation Manitou, Australia's contribution to the multinational Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), aiming to intercept vessels smuggling illegal narcotics which are used to help fund international terrorism.

AB Duvall's main role aboard is personnel and office administration, however like all sailors at sea he has other roles to perform on the warship.

While at his desk he is responsible for all official incoming and outgoing correspondence, but when a suspected drug trafficking vessel is found he becomes an integral member of the boarding team.

He is also a member of the ship's medical emergency team and the flight deck crew, who assist the ship's Sea Hawk helicopter to launch and recover.

AB Duvall said when there was time he cut hair for Melbourne's Ship's Company.

"I still charge them some money, but it is all donated to my favourite charity, which is an animal shelter in Sydney," he said.

"So far I have done close to 100 haircuts aboard Melbourne and made about $1000 for the shelter."

AB Duvall joined the Navy in 2012 for a change of pace and said Operation Manitou was his first operational deployment.

"I wanted to do something completely different and see more of the world," he said.

"It can be a challenge to juggle all my roles and fit them into my day aboard Melbourne.

"I have found it is best to prioritise which particular task needs my focused attention at the time, then go back to catch up my other jobs."

AB Duvall said working and living in such close quarters with such a big crew can be a challenge.

"We don't often have opportunities to have a space to ourselves," he said.

"However, I have found running my hair salon on the ship is a great way to relax.

"I just put on some music, pull out some magazines and do haircuts."

AB Duvall said he was proud to be part of Operation Manitou and the early successes Melbourne had during its first patrol for CMF.

During that patrol, 427 kilograms of heroin were seized and brought aboard for identification and disposal.

The drug seizure was valued at close to $127M AUD.

"We are making a difference and keeping the drugs off the streets," he said.

"It's definitely been the highlight of my Navy career."

When the action is over and Melbourne returns home, AB Duvall said he will make good use of his time ashore.

"I am looking forward to catching up with my partner Stuart and my family when I sail back to Australia," he said.