My involvement with the Defence Force began in April 2006 when, as an elderly recruit of 42, I joined the NZ Army as a Reservist. So began 10 years of service. I was something of an oddity being a Member of Parliament and a serving soldier, though going back in history this was common. Most MPs around the time of WWII had or were still serving.
In 2008 I became the Associate Minister of Defence – a quite different involvement with Defence. While I held this warrant, I was unable to serve actively and took a leave of absence by going on to the inactive reserve. While a Minister I was invited to give many speeches which I have recorded here:
Living with Tricholomy – A Patients Story Speech to the Australian Defence Reserves Support Council Dinner 18 October 2014, Adelaide, Australia