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    Seabees complete trilateral exercise with Timorese and Australian engineers

    Seabees complete trilateral exercise with Timorese and Australian engineers

    Courtesy Photo | Builder 3rd Class Jennifer Casey, assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 4

    By Lt. Caroline Mastrangelo

    HERA, East Timor – On Nov. 7 representatives from three countries gathered to celebrate the successful completion of exercise Hari’i Hamutuk. The name of the exercise, “Hari’i Hamutuk,” is Tetun for “build together” and this was definitely true of the entire exercise.

    Four units from different backgrounds, cultures and languages worked together to fully complete two major projects and five minor projects over the course of the five week exercise which began Oct. 6. The units included engineers from the Fantil-Forças de Defesa de Timor Leste (F-FDTL) Combat Engineer Company, the U.S. Marine Corps 3rd Combat Assault Battalion, the Australian Combat Engineer Regiment, and Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 4.

    U.S. Chargé D’Affairs Katherine Dueholm, Deputy Australian Ambassador Toby Lendon, and Timorese Vice Chief of Defense Force (VCDF) Brig. Gen. Filomeno Tirocinado da Paixao de Jesus attended the closing ceremony held at the F-FDTL Port Hera Naval Base and Hera Community Center. Brig. Gen. Paixao de Jesus commented on the strong relationships developed between the three countries and how the exercise will help lead to future interaction and engagements.

    Lendon and Brig. Gen. Paixao de Jesus cut the ribbon on two new 40 person accommodation blocks for the F-FDTL on Port Hera Naval Base, one of the major projects during the exercise. The accommodation blocks were completed by a crew comprised of all four units, led by an Australian engineer. The facility will provide needed barracks support to the F-FDTL Naval Port.

    After the ribbon cutting Brig. Gen. Paixao de Jesus honored the Australian, Seabee and Marine troop commanders with tais, a Timorese tradition, showing friendship and lasting relationship. The ceremony took a quick pause to allow the attendees to move to the second major project, a community center renovation for the Hera community.

    At this project Dueholm and the brigadier general cut the ribbon for the community center that will support the local village chief and community events. The community center underwent a major renovation led by a Seabee with a crew combined from all four units. Working with people from different cultures and experiences can often be difficult, however all participants worked together very well and focused on developing each other mutually.

    “Working with other countries was a good experience. Also, it was interesting to see how each of us does construction work,” said Builder 3rd Class Jennifer Casey. “I really enjoyed the exercise and it was a highlight for me.”

    Casey worked on the community center renovation project where engineers from four different units worked together to complete the project. During the project, one of Timorese sergeants taught the crew how to apply stucco accurately and quickly and the Seabees were able to pass on some quality control points.

    Hari’i Hamutuk lived up to its name, both in respect to construction projects and in respect to military relationships. Due to the resounding success of the exercise it will continue as an annual event supporting military and community construction for years to come in Timor-Leste.



    Date Taken: 11.07.2014
    Date Posted: 11.26.2014 03:00
    Story ID: 148870
    Location: HERA, TL
    Hometown: PORT HUENEME, CA, US

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