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TALES OF TWO SEALINK FERRY MEN! BRAD FARIMOND ACHIEVES ’SKIPPER’ STATUS ON SEALINK PASSENGER FERRIES Well known SeaLink man Brad Farimond is pretty excited at the present time. That’s because the long-time SeaLink employee has recently been elevated to ‘skipper’ status. Brad is well known to islanders not just because he works on our island ferries and barges, but because he is also one of the Coastal Scavengers. The Coastal Scavengers are a volunteer three-man foreshore clean-up team we have featured in The Friendly Bay Islander on many occasions. Brad has been a long-time ‘deckie’ on the passenger ferries and in recent years was attached to the vehicular barges as a crew leader. He told The Friendly Bay Islander that he has an ‘affinity’ with the water and the island way of life. “I couldn’t imagine working anywhere else. “I love the islands and our waterways, and becoming a skipper is a terrific milestone for me and my family.” Married with a young family, Brad decided to ‘up the ante’ and to progress in his chosen career and to study for his Masters 5 ticket and Med 2 status for full skipper qualification. He was promoted to ’skipper’ just a few weeks ago, receiving congratulations from many crew members and islanders. With his well-known long beard, Brad certainly looks the sea-faring type, and there is no sign of it coming off anytime soon - “my kids wouldn’t recognise me!” Well done Brad. You are an island stalwart and you deserve your promotion to skipper!

• New ‘skipper’ Brad Farimond at the wheel of an island passenger ferry. LONG-SERVING ‘DECKIE’ JOHN FRANCIS CALLS IT A DAY! One of the longest-serving Deckie’s on the SeaLiink ferry service, John Francis, has called it a day. John finished his final run as the ‘weekend deckie’ mid last month after 15 years of continual service. An old friend of The Friendly Bay Islander, John has been a stalwart to the islands in more ways than one. He told us he is calling it a day to do something he always has aspired to: “To join the Grey Nomad’s and to tour Australia with my car and caravan.” Listening to music and attending a few concerts will also be on his agenda. John has some spectacular children, and he hopes to also spend more time with them and watch their amazing growth and directions. John Francis will end nearly 30 years involved with passenger ferries and the waters around Brisbane and Moreton Bay. For many years prior to coming to the islands John was a ferry driver with the popular Brisbane ferries. He leaves his working life with plenty of memories. “I have seen a bit during my time on the ferries. “The islands have changed considerably in that time, mostly for the better,” he said. Good luck John. Have a great life!

• John Francis on one of his last days as a ‘deckie’.



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