One Woman’s War and Peace

A nurse’s journey in the Royal Australian Air Force

Author: Wing Commander Sharon Bown (Ret’d.)

ISBN: 9781925335316


“An honest and inspiring account of one woman’s life in the service of her country. Sharon has experienced the lowest of lows and the highest of highs yet in every circumstance, Sharon’s amazing courage shines through. A must read for anyone who has served in the ADF and those in the wider public who wish to learn more about the sacrifices made by those who wear our nation’s uniform.” – Air Chief Marshal Sir Angus Houston AK, AFC (Ret’d) 

In 1999, idealistic 23-year-old Registered Nurse Sharon Bown left her comfortable family life in Tasmania and joined the Royal Australian Air Force with the aim of providing humanitarian aid to the world.

Through her 16-year military career she deployed on three operations, barely survived a helicopter crash, struggled to return to military service, mixed in political circles in Canberra and around the world as Aide de Camp to the Minister for Defence, and commanded a combat surgical team during some of the most intense fighting in Afghanistan.

From teaching East Timorese orphans to learn English to tending to wounded Coalition soldiers choppered into her surgical team from deadly battles on the Afghan dust, Sharon’s story is that of a sheltered civilian RN becoming a military Nursing Officer and a commander.

Her military service was unique, varied and far-reaching but came at the cost of her physical and mental health. A broken back, shattered jaw and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder are the price she has paid for a remarkable and inspirational career in the Royal Australian Air Force.

Channel 7’s Sunrise


Wing Commander Sharon Bown (Ret’d) completed her Bachelor of Nursing at the University of Tasmania in 1995. With post-graduate qualifications in Peri-operative nursing and Advanced Nursing in Family, Child and Youth Health, she worked as a Registered Nurse at Calvary Hospital, Hobart from 1996–1999, including two years in the operating theatre, before joining the Royal Australian Air Force as a Nursing Officer in 1999.

SPECIFICATIONS: Paperback | 229 x 152 mm | Approx. 30 Colour Photographs | 248 Pages | 

PURCHASE FROM: Exisle Australia | Exisle New Zealand

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