Whangarei Man Goes To The Edge Of The Earth

7 March 2013

OSCS John Werahiko on Enderby Island in the Sub-Antarctic.

OSCS John Werahiko on Enderby Island in the Sub-Antarctic.

Whangarei local John Werahiko’s primary motivation for joining the Navy was to travel and after one year in the job, he believes that he’s made the right choice.

Ordinary Seaman Combat Specialist (OSCS) Werahiko is posted to HMNZS OTAGO, one of the Navy’s two Offshore Patrol Vessels.

"OTAGO is my first sea posting and I’ve been onboard six months. Whilst onboard I have already been down to the Southern Ocean, we have worked in the Sub-Antarctic islands and we almost made it to Tonga during a search and rescue mission."

"So far, everywhere OTAGO has sailed has been a highlight for me. Not many people get to go where we’ve gone ashore."

OSCS Werahiko is onboard to gain experience in seamanship, "My main role is the helmsman and lookout on the bridge when we’re at sea. My other roles include bowman on the Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB), cable party when anchoring, and berthing party when we come alongside in various ports.

"Its all a great experience," says OSCS Werahiko.

During OTAGO’s deployment to the Sub-Antarctic Islands OSCS Warehiko helped transfer people and supplies ashore, supporting the Department of Conservation efforts in the region.

Although OTAGO has been deployed patrolling New Zealand’s maritime responsibilities from the Southern Ocean to the South Pacific, OCSS Warehiko still manages to find time for his interests.

"I have been training with the Navy basketball team while we have been alongside, and I am also part of the Navy’s Maori Cultural Group.

"I like the way the Navy caters to its people and supports my interests, in particular the travel. The lifestyle is good, as is meeting new people and seeing new places," says OSCS Werahiko.


For more information, contact Defence Communications Group on 021 487 980.

This page was last reviewed on 15 March 2013.