It’s a long way from Adelaide to Davao City in the Philippines but for Rose Park local Lieutenant Rebecca Wheldrake it’s just another day at the office.
Rebecca’s current office is Armidale Class Patrol Boat HMAS Larrakia which recently finished exercising with the Philippines Navy off the island of Mindanao.
"I’m a Maritime Warfare Officer (MWO) with patrol boat crew Attack Four which is currently embarked in Larrakia," she said.
"Being an MWO on a patrol boat means I have a multitude of jobs which makes life very interesting."
"My main job onboard is Officer of the Watch which essentially means I ‘drive’ the ship when we are at sea."
"I’m also one of the ship’s Visit Liaison Officers and as such am required to liaise with various civil authorities to ensure the ship is provided with what we need at the various ports we visit."
Those ports have so far included Sandakan in Malaysia, Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, and Davao.
After leaving Davao, Larrakia will head to Tacloban, also in the Philippines, to take part in the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Leyte Gulf.
When she’s not sailing around SE Asia, Rebecca tries to get home to Adelaide as often as she can to catch up with family and friends.
"I really miss my mum’s cooking when I’m at sea, so that’s something I look forward to when I go home on leave."
After joining the Navy in 2011 as a direct entry officer, Rebecca served in a number of ships where she undertook the several phases of training required to become a qualified Officer of the Watch.
She has served in HMA ships Warramunga, Huon and Benalla during her career.
After HMAS Larrakia’s six-week South East Asian deployment is finished, the ship will return to its homeport of Darwin.