Leading Seaman Andrew Wakely

2010 died in a swimming accident

Defence media release
MSPA 274/10 Friday, 2 July 2010

Sailor remembered by his mates

Leading Seaman Andrew Wakely of Bentley, Western Australia has today been remembered by family and fellow sailors of the Royal Australian Navy, at a moving memorial service held at Fremantle Maritime Museum.

28 year old Leading Seaman Wakely was on shore leave in Tonga from HMAS Warramunga when he went missing while swimming on 16 June. After an extensive search conducted by HMAS Warramunga’s helicopter and Tongan authorities, Leading Seaman Wakely is missing-presumed-dead.

The crew of HMAS Warramunga mourned the loss of Leading Seaman Wakely at a memorial wreath laying ceremony off the coast of Tonga and today sailors from HMAS Stirling gathered with Andrew Wakely’s family to remember him.

Commander Bruce Legge, Commanding Officer of HMAS Warramunga said it was important that shipmates both past and present had the opportunity to reflect on their loss and remember Leading Seaman Wakely.

Leading Seaman Wakely served in the Royal Australian Navy for ten years, with the majority of his service undertaken at HMAS Stirling and ships based at Fleet Base West, Rockingham. Leading Seaman Wakely undertook two tours to the Middle East Area of Operations during his service.

Captain Brett Dowsing, Commanding Officer of HMAS Stirling attended the memorial service in Leading Seaman Wakely’s honour. “This tragic accident has hit the Navy very hard and particularly HMAS Warramunga and Stirling Navy members, as there are so many sailors here who have served with Andrew Wakely in the past ten years. The West Australian Navy community has lost one of its own. Our thoughts are also with his family and friends,” Captain Dowsing said.

Leading Seaman Wakely’s family is being provided with continued support by Navy and the Defence Community Organisation.

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