Beimop Tapim
Dauareb man from Mer Island in the Torres Strait Islands
Retired Leading Seaman Survival Equipment (LSSE)
Royal Australian Navy 1966 – 1986


Australian Service Medal 1945-75 with clasp FESR
Defence Force Service Medal 1986
National Medal 1981
Australian Defence Medal

I am a proud Dauareb man from Mer Island in the Torres Strait Islands, the youngest of thirteen children. During my final year of school on Thursday Island, the HMAS Gascoyne anchored in the harbour. At three months old and not yet 18, in 1966, I decided to enlist in the Royal Australian Navy. I January 1966. In doing this, I followed in the footsteps of my Uncle, who joined the army in WW2, and two elder brothers, who joined and fought in WW2.

In 1974, I was a part of Operation Navy Help Darwin was a disaster relief operation initiated by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) following the destruction of Darwin, Northern Territory by Cyclone Tracy during the night of 24-25 December 1974. 13 ships, 11 aircraft, and 3,000 personnel were sent to Darwin in the largest disaster relief operation undertaken by the RAN in its history. The RAN task force was present from 31 December 1974 to 31 January 1975. I also participated in the Rim of the Pacific Exercise, which is the world’s largest international maritime warfare exercise. RIMPAC is held biennially since 1971 and is hosted and administered by the United States Navy’s Pacific Fleet, headquartered at Pearl Harbor, in conjunction with the Marine Corps, the Coast Guard, and Hawaii National Guard forces under the control of the Governor of Hawaii.

In 1981 I received The National Medal, awarded for diligent long service to the community in hazardous circumstances, including in times of emergency and national disaster, in direct protection of life and property. My eldest son, who is also called Beimop became a Lieutenant Medical Officer in the RAN.