Grati-Tuesday 24th January 2023

Written by AHQ

24 January 2023

Happy Tuesday Friends!

Hope you are having an awesome week so far!
Looking forward to having a few days off for Australia Day. I am heading to Canberra so going to hit some of the patchwork shops we visited during the Thank You weekend.
Have a few thank yous this week, so grab a nice cool beverage, sit back, relax and savour these beautiful messages! 

Dear Barbara W,

Thank you very much for the beautiful quilt you made and sent to me during my recent deployment. I was so thrilled to receive it!

The inclusion of my grandmothers’ birthdays was significant as I lost both of them in 2022 aged 96 and 101!  They were both amazing women who I admired and loved greatly and miss very much. So the quilt will always hold a special place in my heart for that reason.

I applaud you and all the other ladies who give your valuable time making the quilts and laundry bags for those of us serving away from home.  It really means a lot to us.

Kind regards,

Dear Lynn F, 


I wish to express my sincere gratitude for the lovely hero quilt I have received and I was fortunate enough that I was presented it by an old friend and my wife during my last days in the Regular Army. 


I have been to the American Hospital in Germany on several occasions to visit our wounded and seen the benefits of the quilts to those soldiers who have received them, also for those ADF personnel in the Middle East and Afghanistan, great work by Aussie Hero Quilts organisation and the ladies who create them. 


Again my thanks to you for the fantastic quilt and time and effort that had gone into making it, it will be a treasure I will value always.


Kindest Regards


Dear Ellen N,


Thank you so much for the extraordinary quilts you made for our HMAS Anzac Sick Bay. They are so creative an special and the team will treasure them through our upcoming deployment and for many, many years to come. Our crew think that what you and the AHQ team of volunteers do is really amazing and makes service life so much more special for each of us working in the Australian Defence Force and often away from our loved ones, homes and our communities. The quilts bring so much joy to the crew and they really look forward to seeing the fantastic designs that you all create around the ship. We feel so very privileged to have an item aboard that really carries the creative spirit of the person who made it.


I am a Maritime Spiritual Wellbeing Officer (MSWO) in the RAN, which is essential a secular/non-denominational Chaplain. I’m very privileged to be one of the first of my kind in the ADF and the first MSWO at sea. As a MSWO, it’s an absolute honour to serve, support and care for our sailors, officers and their families and loved ones at sea and ashore and it’s a role that resonates in all I do. Before I appointed to the RAN, I worked as a mental health clinician in the civilian health sector for nearly two decades, primarily in acute inpatient psychiatry, community case management and private practice; so whilst it’s similar work in the helping people sense, it’s in a different and dynamic environment at sea and in an operational capacity. My professional background is as an occupational therapist, so I loved hearing that your daughter is an OT too. It sounds like you have not only a strong military tradition in your extended family, but strong links to healthcare with your previous work in nursing and both daughters in health.


I joined Anzac last year and we were away for about half of the year on various deployments. I will continue to be posted to Anzac for this year and we have a big deployment coming up in a couple of months so I’ll be gone for most of the year ahead. My husband also serves in the Navy as a Submariner and whilst I have only been in the RAN for just under two years, he has served for eighteen years now. My father was a Vietnam Veteran and served in the Army so our family also has had a strong tradition of serving Australia, the Commonwealth and her people. Unfortunately my father passed away a few years ago before I appointed so he did not get to see me in this role. Dad used to talk about the Padres and how essential they were in supporting the troops; so this position is even more poignant for me on a personal level. My husband and I have a little boy who’s four and starting school at the end of the month so that’s really exciting for us and we’re happy we are both alongside and not away at sea at the moment to be there for it.


Thank you again for the beautiful quilts and your involvement with Aussie Hero Quilts (and Laundry Bags), we are so very grateful for your time and effort and your ongoing support of our people who serve. I’ve included some photos of your quilts. I hope that you and your husband have some great traveling adventures this year across Australia. Many blessings to you and your loved ones.




G’day Margaret B,


Thank you for the Hero Quilt it is fantastic and I’m incredibly impressed with your efforts! I had just returned from my mid-mission leave and received it, so it was a nice surprise to be given something upon returning to the mission.


I’m impressed by the detail and you’ve hit the tone perfectly in reference the blue, it’s something I’ll ensure is placed with all my memorabilia for my career to date and specifically with the OP ASLAN portion.


Between you and my I like to crank up the air conditioner in my room to make it cold enough that I actually use it on the couch!


I was pleased to hear of you attending the function in Canberra, one of my mates who deployed just recently, was actually at the event, and is a big supporter of the cause. I learned from her about Aussie Hero Quilts whilst on a training course for pre-deployment.


I’m currently transitioning to the back end of my deployment with just less than 10 weeks to go. Upon return to Australia my fiancée and I will be moving to my next posting as an instructor at the Royal Military College – Duntroon, we’re both looking forward to living and working within Canberra.


Prior to deploying we were in Lismore NSW and I was able to help out with all the flood rescues and assistance efforts, we were lucky in that the Defence property we were in was on the ridge above the town so the worst we encountered was a waterfall through our backyard. The dogs were soaked and essentially from then lived inside and my partner works from home and was able to welcome me home with a hot meal, as the unit was on the go 18 hours a day there for a bit to ensure we did the best we could to help the community.


Say g’day to your husband, the cats and dogs for me, I hope all is well for you in the New Year and that it’s a healthy and prosperous year for your whole family.


Once again thank you for the quilt, I have a son due in June this year which is my first and I’m sure he’ll also love the quilt.


Cheers from a hot and dusty South Sudan!


Good Morning Aussie Hero Quilts,


Thank you to the team for organising such beautiful and thoughtful quilts to be sent to the current rotation of ADF personnel on Op Aslan. My own quilt is just gorgeous and I was hoping you could pass on the below message to Deni G for me.


Dear Deni G,


Thank you so much for the wonderful quilt and laundry bag you made for me. It means so much to receive such a special gift which I know would have taken a lot of effort and skill to make. I myself have only made two quilts in my time, but the experience has taught me that there is a lot of care, expertise and patience going into a quilt as beautiful as the one you made for me.


I am an Air Traffic Controller in the Air Force and have been serving for 17 years now. My current deployment to South Sudan as part of the United Nations Mission is my first peacekeeping mission and it has been quite the eye-opening experience. I am reminded every day just how lucky we are to live in such beautiful country with clean water from the tap, food, health care, free education and most importantly – a community that cares.


Thank you for the lovely letter that came with the quilt and blanket. 5 grandsons must be quite the handful! It sounds like you have a lovely family around you (and an interesting and distinguished family history). It must be very special to have your mum celebrating her 97th birthday- quite the achievement! I’m glad you got to escape winter this year to Darwin. I was posted there for 5 ½ years and have very fond memories of the warm nights, walks along the esplanade and the great atmosphere during Dry Season. Hopefully you had a chance to do the Adelaide River Jumping Crocs cruise, it is definitely my favourite tourist attraction up there.


I count myself very lucky to wear the uniform and follow in the footsteps of pioneering women such as your mother and serve Australia in whatever way I can. Thank you for your creativity, patience and kindness in creating something that is likely to be a family heirloom for my family.


Kind regards,


Dear Jan-Maree (Bridget & Keryn),


I received my Aussie Hero Quilt and Laundry bag in the post just before Christmas last year 2022. It appears it had been redirected to my home address by the defence postal system.


Thank you so much for these beautiful and unique gifts. I am particularly impressed by the amount of time and effort that must have been dedicated to making the quilt and laundry bag for me while I was deployed. I’m sure this would have been very memorable had I received it while I was still overseas.


Now that I have returned to Australia, I will continue to work in my normal field of expertise with the memory of my time on operations in Africa. Your Quilt and Laundry bag will provide a positive reminder I can keep for the rest of my life.


Kind Regards


Dear Shirley D,
Thank you very much for the quilt and particularly for the thought that went into the selection of the materials. thank you also for sharing a part of your history and that of your fathers service in the Middle East and WW2.  I appreciate your patience in waiting for this note of thanks, with arrangements having been made for the quilt to be presented along with the presentation of my Federation Star for 40 years service in mid November 2022.
I write this note on 13 Jan 23, the 41st anniversary of my enlistment as a 15 year old apprentice motor vehicle mechanic. During my service I have been fortunate to have seen much of Australia and to have been overseas with an operation deployment to Afghanistan, Iraq and the Solomon Islands as well as to have trained in the United States and undertaken project work in the United Kingdom.
Throughout my service I have made friends with many fellow servicemen and women as well as many people in the USA and the UK.
I am looking forward to spending retirement at our property in NSW and anticipate that I will transition from the Army sometime this year.
I hope that you and your extended family are all keeping well and that you continue to enjoy life including the quilting and gardening.  I’ve set up a sewing room for my wife who was instrumental in organising the quilt for me and I’m sure that she will enjoy her sewing once we are spending more time at our (retirement) home. 
I am interested in nature and was the coordinator of an environmental group doing bush regeneration for a number of years, while I also set up a work experience and life skills program for unemployed Australians through the Department of Employment, Education and Training.  My current project is restoring the bushland at our property , as well as working on plans for the renovation of the house as I plan my transition to life outside of Army.
Thank you again for the quilt, it is much appreciated
Kind regards,  

Good Afternoon Gail M,

I’m a Combat Engineer in the Australian Army.

I recently received one of your laundry bags. I’d like to thank you and your fellow Quilters for the time and thought you put into creating quilts and laundry bags to supporting us.

I grew up in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. After completing year 12 I became an arborist and spent five and a half years in the industry, before joining the army in 2014. I went through basic training at Kapooka then job specific training at the School of Military Engineering at Holsworthy. On completion I was posted to the 1st Combat Engineer regiment in Darwin and I have spent the last seven years posted there. I have been promoted twice and I’m currently a Corporal.

Whilst in the Army I have done training all over Australia. I haven’t been overseas with defence, but I’ve been part of three Operations. I helped clean up around Darwin after Cyclone Marcus in 2018. I went to Kangaroo Island as part of Operation Bushfire Assist at the start of 2020 and received an ADF Bronze Commendation for my professionalism, skill and leadership while leading small teams conducting tree work as part of the clean-up. I was also part of Operation COVID Assist first in opening a military quarantine area near Darwin and then helping out with the hotel quarantine in Melbourne.

I am currently in the process of leaving the full time Army. I intend to become a carpenter with my Dad and continue to serve through the Army Reserves.

Thank you again for the laundry bag.

Kind Regards,


Gday Gail M, 

I was fortunate enough to receive your laundry bag just before leaving for my Christmas break. 

I am 22 years old and currently serving in the 1st Combat engineer regiment in Darwin N.T. Firstly I would like to thank you for this lovely gift, wherever I travel now for work it will accompany me. Loved reading about your family and your passions. My girlfriend and I have a dream of buying a sailboat and sailing around Australia. I have grown up on fishing boats all my life but never attempted to sail. Your grandchildren sound wonderful and remind me of my sister and me, she rode horses and I rode dirt bikes. 

I am from a small country town in Victoria where my parents still live, I have a twin sister and an older brother. My mum also loves to Quilt and has been doing so for quite some time; my place has three quilts she made for me and when I sent a photo of the laundry bag, she was quite jealous that she hadn’t thought of making one. 

I would like to extend the invitation to you and your husband that if you decide to brave the territory heat and visit Darwin for a holiday, I would love to give you a tour of where I work and what capabilities my job holds.

Hope you had a wonderful holiday, 


A quilt by Bridget presented to her recipient last week.

Until next week keep your letters, emails and photos coming in.  

Tuesday’s would be so totally boring without them!
🌟 🌟 🌟





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