Our ANZAC services this year focused particularly on recognising and paying homage to the sacrifices made by ALL the men and women who have served, suffered, and died at war, as well as those who continue to serve our country.
Our student leaders spoke of the meaning of ANZAC day, how it was initially established to commemorate the landing of Australian and New Zealand troops at Gallipoli on 25 April 1915 but how today, it is a day for Australians to reflect on the many different meanings of war. There was a reflection on The Unknown Australian Soldier who stands for all of the war dead in the past, in the present, and in the future, and who we honour and remember with gratitude for the freedom and safety we enjoy because of their sacrifices.
We were privileged to hear a moving account from Kevin Lloyd-Thomas from the Returned Services League who spoke of the three generations of his family who have served in wartime and of his own experience as an Australian Army Vietnam veteran of two tours, forward scout, machine gunner, and section commander in a long range reconnaissance platoon.
Our Ashmore Rd campus service had a special focus on the voices of our Trinity community. We heard a very moving account from Mrs Bliss, who honoured her father, and spoke of the importance of remembering and paying respect to all service men and women as they have fought, and sometimes died, for the lifestyle we are privileged to enjoy in Australia today. Year 9 student, Randall spoke of the privilege of being a cadet, and Miss Walpole told us about her personal experience as a Quartermaster in the Australian military. We remembered Sean McCarthy, Trinity graduate and Australian soldier who was killed in Afghanistan in 2008.
The poem, Dulce Et Decorum Est, read by Lily and enacted by Etienne, Wills, Bailey, Lucas and Fletcher was poignantly performed and reminded us that, whilst we should not and do not celebrate war, it is important that we, as young Australians, continue to commemorate and pay respect to the ordinary Australian men and women whose sacrifice has afforded us the freedom and way of life we have in Australia today.
We concluded our services with the laying of remembrance wreaths in front of our Lone Pine Tree (Ashmore Rd Campus) and ANZAC Memorial Stone (Cotlew St. Campus).