Luke heads out to Afghanistan

Sergeant Luke Cullen.
Sergeant Luke Cullen.

A MEDIC from Whitley Bay will be using his organisational skills at the front line in Afghanistan.

Luke Cullen, a sergeant in the Territorial Army, has completed an intensive training programme in preparation for a three-month tour of duty of the war torn country.

Sgt Cullen, 30, has been in the TA for eight years and in the past has been deployed to Iraq.

He said: “The training prepares us to deal with working in a high pressurised environment.

“I’m responsible for ensuring supplies are ordered and get to the right people.”

While on duty Sgt Cullen is hoping to develop his organisational skills for when he returns home.

He is in the process of arranging his wedding with fiancée Gemma.

“I am really going to miss her,” he said.

Sgt Cullen’s training programme included a detailed mock-up of the hospital in Camp Bastion in Helmand Province, which prepares medical staff for possible clinical pressures they may face.

A team of actors and veterans used their personal traumas and realistic make-up to simulate the injuries that may need to be treated.

To ensure that they aid performance in the treatment of catastrophic battle field injuries, the ‘casualties’ remain in character to make the experience more intense and realistic.

Sgt Cullen is a member of the TA’s 201 Field Hospital in Newcastle.