North Shore Times : February 8th 2013
Friday, February 8, 2013 FEB. 12TH NORTHERN TUESDAY 4PM - 7PM CAMPUS GET WHAT YOU NEED TO KICK START AN EXCITING FUTURE. UNITEC S INFO EVENING UNI8903A Don't run for nothing. Your registration fee supports charity. Register now! www.roundthebays.co.nz Ports of Auckland Round the Bays The show goes on despite city attack Go to northshoretimes.co.nz and click on Latest Edition to see pictures from Nitro Circus. Street thugs almost cut short motocross stunt star Luke Smith's comeback to the big time at North Harbour Stadium. The Stanmore Bay rider was an international star with the Crusty Demons until a horror smash in 2009 almost killed him. But his big day with the Nitro Circus tour on Saturday was almost ruined when he was king hit from behind in Auckland while on a night out with friends, it was revealed at the show. Luke thrilled the big crowd with hair-raising solo stunts despite the attack which left him with a broken jaw. The 2009 accident left him unconscious for 25 minutes and placed in an induced coma for eight days, spending four and a half months in hospital. ''I battled some horrible demons and there were times I almost took my life. I shut myself away from the world, gave away all of my bike gear and lots of stuff that reminded me of bikes and tried to block it out of my life.'' But one year after the accident he astounded medical experts by competing in high-speed racing and becoming a champion drift- driver before being tempted back to two wheels. Luke hadn't fully recovered from yet another injury -- a badly broken ankle -- when he and another rider performed stunts, including his trademark backflips, at the Waitakere Lions Cracker Christmas show at The Trusts Stadium in December. Proud moment: Commanding Officer of the HMNZS Te Kaha, David McEwan, with wife Wendy. Photo: DYANNE ARMSTRONG Warship's top dog By MARYKE PENMAN SCHOOL DROPOUT NOW COMMANDS THE WARSHIP TE KAHA . . . it's an extremely proud moment for myself and my family. Commanding Officer David McEwan COMMAND of the navy's most prestigious warship Te Kaha has been handed over to a man who was once a high school dropout. Commanding Officer David McEwan, 47, was registered unem- ployed when he joined the Limited Service Volunteer scheme run by the New Zealand Defence Force back in 1984. When I left school I didn't have much of a focus. I wasn't really the academic type; I just wanted to have a good time,'' he says. Mr McEwan completed the five- month programme and signed on with the Royal New Zealand Navy as a radar operator. A lot of people kept saying I had the makings of an officer and so I went back to night school to get my requisite maths. I then progressed through the ranks and became a combat officer.'' Mr McEwan received a call that would see him return to sea while working at the navy headquarters in Wellington.. They called me and asked if I wanted to go chasing pirates around the Horn of Africa. I couldn't say no to that,'' he says. Mr McEwan has commanded of more ships in the past two years than most naval officers will throughout their entire careers. He took command of the HMNZS Otago in 2011 and in September last year was in charge of HMNZS Wellington. This appointment, he says, is of particular significance as it sees him return to Te Kaha having pre- viously served as gunnery officer, operations officer and eventually lieutenant commander. Walking through here the other day brought back enormous mem- ories. It feels good to back and it's an extremely proud moment for myself and my family,'' Mr McEwan says. Te Kaha will undergo a 12-month maintenance phase before it returns to sea. The vessel is one of only two frigates in the Royal New Zealand Navy fleet including the HMNZS Te Mana. It has a crew of around 177 officers and ratings when fully operational. On board are a range of weapons including a vertical launch system with Nato Seaspar- row air defence missile, two tor- pedo tubes and a number of machine guns. The ship also car- ries a Seasprite helicopter that can be armed with torpedoes, depth charges and missiles.
February 7th 2013
February 12th 2013