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9 Nov 2023

Fri 3 Nov 2023

Hello Fellow Maritimers

A very special Happy Birthday to our Patron, Air Commodore Mal Gunton OBE, AFC, who is 100 years young on 2 November 2023. Congratulations Sir on reaching just one significant milestone in a life time of great achievement. Happy Birthday.

I also have sad news that Sad to report that retired Flight Engineer Dick (Richard) Masters passed away 26 Oct, in Auckland Hospital.

He was in the company of his family, who had spent the day travelling from Taupo and Wanaka -just.

Dick has been in poor health for some time, suffering regular Angina attacks.

Dick was a 5 Squadron Flight Engineer, on Sunderland and Orion aircraft, retiring from the RNZAF in early 1980’s and joining Air NZ.

Thanks to Bob Moody for providing this news, I know you have lost a good bowls partner.

Since I last wrote Wing Commander Mark Whiteside has taken the reins of the Squadron and the New P8's at Ohakea. The Hangar is still being completed and the Squadron have been flat out introducing the new aircraft while squatting at the 3 Squadron Hangar, until their's is completed.

You will have seen that the P8's have logged a number of successes in search and rescues around the Pacific and Mark is really proud of the way the team have all put their shoulder's to the wheel to push the introduction into service along.

CO5, Mark, has made a plea to us too. The new Squadron Headquarters is huge. He is looking for memorabilia and photos that the Squadron could install, to give them a link to their past. The Association Committee will collate any offers and ideas, so please send them in to secretary@5sqnassn.org.nz . All ideas will be gratefully received.

CO5 is also developing plans to get the P8 around the traps so that we can get up close to the new aircraft. First stop is planned for Whenuapai, in the summer months but date TBC. South Islanders, you won't miss out either as he has plans to get down that way too. Keep an eye on your emails and I will let you know a date as soon as I do.

Also, we have the video clip that we made at the 5 Squadron End of P3's dinner in February. Thank you to those I managed to get to interview. I am sorry that I did not get to more. Also, a special thank you to Sam Clarke who made an excellent job of recording and editing this piece of our history.

Click here for the video. https://drive.google.com/file/ d/15aYI6pBUV8TeMWYL3WX_ RPOMgUEitZW8/view?usp=drivesdk

It is 1.7GB, but, if you have disk space, I recommend you down load it as it may not be on the Google Drive forever.

If the hyperlink does not work, you may need to copy the address across to your browser and open it that way.

For those that are looking keeping in contact with past work mates the North Shore Brevet Club (NSBC) might be of interest to you.

The NSBC was formed in 1957 as an offshoot of the Auckland Brevet Club (now defunct) as a social gathering of ex aircrew who wished to retain the comradeship they had experienced while serving. Since its inception the NSBC has retained the core principle of the original charter and is open to membership of all aircrew that have served their country. In addition the Club is open to membership of any aircrew as associates and to close relatives of members and ex members as associates. The Club meets regularly for lunches and attempts to arrange visits to interesting places with an aviation flavour. The NSBC would welcome any who might like to join.

If you are interested please reach out to Les Matthews, lesmatthews356@gmail.com.

I hope you are all well as we come into the holiday season.

Happy Birthday again to our patron. Congratulations.

Keitou kalawaca na wasaliwa

Logan Cudby


5 Squadron Association

Bay of Plenty Times tribute to Mal Gunton.  

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/ bay-of-plenty-times/news/ malcolm-gunton-100-has-loved- aircraft-since-he-was-5-years- old/ EIPJYMUXB5FHXL5YCZ6UZVKPLU/

26 Oct 2023

13 Oct 2023




P8 Flight Deck


Sept 2023

Not a sight you see every day!

NZ4203, our trusted P-3K2 Orion, which retired from active service in 2021, is on a 455-kilometre journey to its new home at the Air Force Museum of New Zealand in Christchurch. 

This precious piece of military aviation history is making its way to the museum by road via Lewis Pass.

NZ4203 is a national hero, flying more than 27,000 hours during its 54-year career. 

It took part in hundreds of missions, including search and rescue operations and anti-submarine patrols, and spent thousands of hours protecting our Exclusive Economic Zone.

Measuring 36 meters in length with a wingspan of just over 30 meters, NZ4203 presents a logistical challenge. 

Specialist trailers are facilitating its nighttime journey, which is expected to take three days to complete.



An outing from the retirement home .Me second right reliving 5 Sqn days in Fiji. Cheers Murray Shearman

16 Aug 2023

Air Force News Jun 23 issue 258


April 2023


Air Force News Issue 255 Mar 23



9 Feb 2023

Good afternoon Association,

A merchandise stock take has now been completed and I can confirm there are no further Haere Ra patches or Retirement Port available. Chris Walker has done a phenomenal job of managing the merchandise sales so there are limited numbers of the following:

So, what's cooler than being cool? Chris thinks an Orion dropping a Mk-46 torpedo on an anti-submarine warfare mission stubby cooler is pretty cool.

Stubby Cooler: $15 (2 for $20)

Commemorate countless operations, hundreds of lives saved and 57 years of service with a high-quality A3 sized print.

 A3 Print: $10 (If shipped, $20)

An in-depth timeline on the history of the Orion and 5 Squadron. No doubt there will be some familiar faces and moments for many of you. (Published 2006)

 Kiwi Orions Book: $20

A commemorative coin which includes the brevets of those trades that made the Orion team.

Retirement Coin: $15

A commemorative brew aptly named 'Crew Lube".

Retirement Beer: $25 per six-pack

(100% of proceeds will be going directly to the retirement function for this aircraft)

To order: email p3retirement@nzdf.mil.nz with your merchandise requirements and contact details to arrange payment and delivery. The team manning the inbox will be in touch.

Pickup Base Whenuapai

Shipping is possible, but will be dealt with on a case by case basis.

To keep the prints safe, $5 is the best deal Chris found for a carry tube.

Thanks for the support,

Siale and team





        Three ship farewell formation 24 Jan 2023.                                                              Old and New

Early 90s

Commemorative RNZAF P-3 Watch.

We’ve had a couple of our co-pilots working in the background to pull together a commemorative RNZAF P-3 watch. In a true understated 5 SQN manner we haven’t gone super flashy with this watch, but we have gone with quality and style, something we’ve always done well. An image of the obverse is located online and we have built in some subtleties to the rotors for that extra touch of personality and class. Additionally, these watches don’t cost the same as a DICASS buoy as we wanted to make them accessible to all of our members.

All details of the watch and how to order are noted below. This has been set up such that we do not need to order batches and these will be made to order and posted direct to you.
 If you do make an order, please can you email FLTLT James Robertson-Bickers (James.Robertson-Bickers@nzdf. mil.nz) who is keeping a tally on all orders.
 I will note, right at the moment you wont be able to order the Swiss movement watch with the black date wheel as it will not allow you to ‘add-to-cart’, so if this is your watch of choice it should be available from mid-late Feb for order.
 Jump online to view the links and if you have further questions feel free to email FLTLT Robertson-Bickers direct and he will be able to answer or follow up for you.
 I look forward to seeing many of these watches at the Retirement function!
 Kia pai to ra
WGCDR Glen Donaldson
Commanding Officer No 5 Squadron - 5SQN, No 5 Squadron RNZAF
Te Tauaarangi o Aotearoa | Royal New Zealand Air Force


P-3 Commemorative Watch 

Place your orders now! email James Robertson-Bickers @ nzdf .mil.NZ



With the arrival of the P-8A Poseidon and the retirement of the P-3K2, the Air Ordnance Specialist trade will be disbanded. An event to mark this occasion is planned, please see below for further details.

It is also with much regret I must pass on the passing of another Association member, Glenn Wilmont GRAHAM (Twisty) Service Number 330672. Marine Section RNZAF. He passed on the 25th July 2022.

His family have passed on that he was extremely proud of having served in the RNZAF and in particular in the Marine Section with a tour at Laucala Bay, Fiji being a highlight of his time in the service.

Keitou kalawaca na wasaliwa



5 Squadron Association



A salute to air ordnance

As the Royal New Zealand Air Force Orion fleet retires to make way for the P-8A Poseidons, No. 5 Squadron’s air ordnance specialist trade will also come to an end. We take a look at the trade and its contribution over the past 56 years.

04 AUGUST, 2022

The full Orion crew consists of 12 aircrew, one of which is an air ordnance specialist.

The trade also serves as a feeder to the air warfare specialist and air warfare officer trades, providing experienced aircrew who also hold wider Defence Force experience to those direct entrance groups, air ordnance specialist leader Warrant Officer (W/O) Aaron Grocott said.

While the name ordnance might infer a specialised knowledge of weaponry, that is not the only thing involved in the role, with specialists knowledge ranging from weapons to catering to medical protocols.

A major responsibility for the specialists is working with the kill store system. The P-3K2 Orion is capable of dropping bombs and torpedoes. The team are the aircrew specialists in the management and problem solving of these systems from the time they are loaded to the time the stores are dropped or returned to our armament techs, W/O Grocott said.

“The kill store system is also used to drop life rafts to survivors in the ocean. All of these and other outputs have procedures that require specific contributions from air ordnance specialists. They are also the only aircrew qualified to load, unload and check life rafts connected to the kill store system, a crucial skill for no-notice search and rescue callouts.”

5 Squadron RNZAF Association Trophy Recipients

The award includes a printed copy of the citation and an inscribed plaque to be retained by the recipient. 


To register as a 5 Sqn Association member contact "glen.moratti@nzdf.mil.nz" <glen.moratti@nzdf.mil.nz>