Gatton woman loves Air Force cargo role

16th May 2017 9:10 AM
TAKE OFF: RAAF Leading Aircraft Woman Teneale Olm at RMAF Butterworth in Penang Malaysia. LACW Olm from 13 Squadron has been assisting the ADF during Exercise Bersama Shield 17. TAKE OFF: RAAF Leading Aircraft Woman Teneale Olm at RMAF Butterworth in Penang Malaysia. LACW Olm from 13 Squadron has been assisting the ADF during Exercise Bersama Shield 17. CPL Steve Duncan / Contributed

Greeting a Royal New Zealand Air Force 757 on a humid tarmac in Malaysia with a forklift may not be everyone's cup of tea.

However for RAAF Leading Aircraft woman Teneale Olm who works in Air Movements, it's all in a days work.

Exercise Bersama Shield 17 is the latest in a long list of overseas deployments for the 22-year-old from Gatton in the Lockyer Valley.

"I just like being able to contribute to the Air Force,” she said.

Since joining the RAAF in 2014, LACW Olm has been deployed to Operation Cyclone Assist 15 as well as Northern Shield 16 and Cope North 16 in Guam.

Currently based at RAAF Darwin with 13 Squadron, LACW Olm is no stranger to loading and un-loading a wide variety of aircraft.

"There's a big Army Base at Robertson Barracks,” she said.

"We do a lot of moves for them with their exercises and we are also a transit base for foreign aircraft.”

Exercise Bersama Shield involves the nations from the Five Power Defence Arrangements; Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

This year the exercise was run from the Royal Malaysian Air Force base at Butterworth, near Penang, Malaysia.

Responsible for cargo movements, load control, loading and unloading aircraft, LACW Olm said meeting foreign forces was her favourite part of the exercise.

"I like working with our RNZAF colleagues and the local Malaysian forces,” she said.

The former Lockyer District High School student and Gatton RSL employee trained at the RAAF recruit school at Wagga Wagga before undertaking specific air movements training at Wagga and at RAAF Richmond near Sydney.

LACW Olm's journey with the RAAF has already taken her to many places around the globe, and she is hoping to pack her bags again later in the year.

"I'm hoping for a deployment to the Middle East this October.”

-Jesse Robilliard