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Lawrence Sabadi - Cairns

Able Seaman Boatswains Mate (BM) Lawrence Sabadi joined the Royal Australian Navy on 16 January 2012. Growing up in Cairns, his decision to join was heavily influenced by family members already in the Australian Defence Force (ADF). Lawrence has several cousins, nieces and nephews currently serving in the Royal Australian Navy and the Australian Army.

Lawrence’s family always expected him to join the ADF, but were unsure which service it would be. After being involved in the Defence Indigenous Development Program (DIDP), through his uncle, his mind was made up with the Navy being the chosen path; though Army was a very close second.

Being involved in the DIDP enabled him to see for himself a variety of jobs available in the ADF and gave him a better opportunity to see what he really would be interested in.

As to why he elected to be a BM, Lawrence believed it was a job that was out of the ordinary and had a sense of adventure about it.

Able Seaman Sabadi is currently serving in HMAS Darwin, deployed on Operation SLIPPER in the Middle East Area of Operations. Though being overseas and visiting other countries, Lawrence’s biggest highlight so far was when he was selected to represent indigenous people at the Navy’s International Fleet Review (IFR) last year.

“Being selected to represent was a wonderful opportunity, I was very proud to be a part of acknowledging indigenous people currently in the ADF,” ABBM Sabadi said.

The IFR was Navy’s showcase celebrating the entering of Sydney Harbour on 04 October 1913 of seven ships commissioned into the newly formed Royal Australian Navy.

Darwin is assigned to the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) in order to conduct maritime security operations in the Arabian Sea, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman and Indian Ocean.

Darwin is deployed in support of Operation SLIPPER and is the 57th rotation of Royal Australian Navy ships to deploy to the Middle Eastern Area of Operations, since 1990. Operation SLIPPER is the Australian Defence Force Contribution to the international campaign against terrorism, counter smuggling and counter piracy, and enhancing regional maritime strategy.

The DIDP has been developed in order to address the needs of northern Australia’s remote indigenous people. The program provides young indigenous adults with the education, training, life skills and confidence – and as a result the opportunities to secure and sustain continuous employment of their choice and to be role models within their communities.