Presentation of the Governor's Cup at the HMAS Moreton opening of the Commander Lachlan King Memorial Garden
Representing the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Councillor Angela Owen; fellow Councillor Steven Toomey; senior representatives from our Defence Forces and the Queensland Police Service; ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you most sincerely for the warm welcome you have extended to Kaye and me on this important day in the history of HMAS Moreton.
It is an important day for more than one reason.
We are here for the official opening of the Commander Lachlan King Memorial Garden – a place of remembrance for the brave men and women who have served under the Australian White Ensign, named in honour of a highly respected and decorated Queenslander who served in roles on 11 Her Majesty’s Australian Ships, and was Commanding Officer of Naval Headquarters South Queensland.
I welcome Commander King’s mother, Pamela, who joins us today.
As a nation, we highly regard those who are prepared to sacrifice themselves and risk their lives for others, at sea or ashore, in war or natural calamity.
We admire their courage and pay our respects.
Members of the Royal Australian Navy are a closely-knit group who know the true meaning of teamwork and friendship.
No matter how challenging the circumstances, together they stand strong.
This magnificent garden is much more than a memorial.
It is a testament to a strong sense of family within the Royal Australian Navy – a testament to enduring care and support.
That brings me to another important reason why we are here – the handover of command from Captain McConnell to Commander Savvakis.
Captain McConnell assumed control of HMAS Moreton in 2016 and has been a regular guest at Government House.
We are sad to see him move on.
At the same time, HMAS Moreton has found a very capable successor in Commander Savvakis.
Captain McConnell, thank you for your outstanding service, I wish you every success in your new role as the Director of the Organisational Design Unit in Canberra.
Commander Savvakis, welcome aboard, Kaye and I look forward to hosting you at Government House for the first time in your official capacity.
Ladies and gentlemen, as we celebrate another milestone today, it gives me great pleasure to announce that HMAS Moreton has been recognised as the Royal Australian Navy’s best-performing shore establishment during 2018 in all aspects of operations, safety and support to the fleet.
In a moment, I will therefore present you with the well-deserved Governor’s Cup, a national award launched in 2007 with a focus on welfare, morale, equity and diversity – all cornerstones of the HMAS Moreton community.
It is wonderful to see this highly sought-after symbol of excellence return to Queensland after being awarded to HMAS Cairns in 2010 – congratulations to all!
Today I will also join Captain McConnell in presenting medallions to three Australia Day Award recipients.
Please accept Kaye’s and my warmest congratulations on these marvellous achievements, and our very best wishes for a busy, rewarding and successful year ahead.