I saw a boy marching, with medals on his chest,
He marched alongside diggers, marching six abreast,
He knew it was Anzac Day, he walked along with pride,
And did his best to keep in step with the diggers by his side.
And when the march was over the boy looked rather tired.
A digger said. "Whose medals son?" to which the boy replied,
"They belong to my Dad, but he didn't come back.
He died up in New Guinea, up on the Kokoda Track".
The boy looked rather sad, and a tear came to his eye,
But the digger said, "Don't worry son, I'll tell you why,"
He said, "Your old man marched with us today, all the bloomin way,
All us diggers knew he was here, it's like that on Anzac Day.
The boy looked rather puzzled he didn't understand
But the digger went on talking, and started to wave his hand,
"For this great land we live in, there's a price we have to pay,
To keep Australia free, and fly our flag today.'
'Yes we all love fun and merriment in this country where we live,
"But the price was that some soldier his precious life must give,
"For you to go to school, my son, and worship God at will.
"Somebody had to pay the price, so our diggers paid the bill."
"Your dad died for us my son for all things good and true.
"And I hope you can understand these words I've said to you".
The boy looked up at the digger and after a little while,
His face changed expression, and he said with a beautiful smile,
I know my dad marched here today, this our Anzac Day,
I know he did, I know he did. all the bloom'n way!"
“Every nation must, sooner or later, come for the first time to a supreme test of quality; and the result of that test will hearten or dishearten those who come afterwards. For the fledgling nation of Australia that first supreme test was at Gallipoli.”
April 25th 1915 marks the day that Australian and New Zealand troops first took major military action in World War One. Today, the sacrifices and incredible courage shown by the ANZACS and all our men and women who have fought and died at war, is commemorated across Australia in ceremonies that unite the nation in remembrance, appreciation and national pride.
However, as the past becomes a faded memory in the minds of the elderly and to youth, merely a historic fact learned from textbooks, many wonder about the future of this long tradition. Can we really remember something we never experienced?
The ‘Spirit of ANZAC’ is an idea that strongly resides behind the ceremonies, the silences, the Bugle playing, the remembering. It is a notion embodied in the deeds, comradeship, courage and sacrifice displayed by the ANZACS on that tragic day 92 years ago but also in the sacrifices of others in wars to follow.
The Spirit of ANZAC is not something we can see but a powerful driving sensation that can only be felt. It is an ideal that is not confined to the battlefield but lives in the hearts of all human beings and encompasses the laughter, the pride and the love of life that is in every Australian.
The ANZACs fought bravely, independently, and without fear, proving that their young countries could produce men equal to any in the world.
It is this spirit that causes thousands to continue to gather across the country each year in memory of the sacrifices and bravery of those who went before.
Members of the Wynnum Manly community came together Wednesday during the many ceremonies and services held throughout the day. Dawn services held at 4am at both the cenotaphs in Wynnum and Manly drew large crowds and at 9am Cadets, Scouts, Girl Guides and the Girls Brigade marched down the streets of Wynnum Central to the sound of pipes and marching drums to finish in the RSL car park for the annual wreath laying service.
It’s in the faces and actions of each and every Australian present today that the spirit of ANZAC lives on, with the same pride and zest for life shown by the Australian and New Zealand youth of many years ago.
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
91 years later, April 25th is still remembered throughout Australia, it will not be forgotten. It marks the day that Australian and New Zealand troops first took major military action in World War One, 1915. Setting out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula, the plan to open the Black Sea for the allied navies, became a tragic slaughtering of our brave soldiers. The soldiers in those forces became known as ANZACs (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) and great pride is bestowed in that name.
9am Tuesday morning saw members of the Wynnum Manly community coming together to commemorate the sacrifice these soldiers made. Cadets, Scouts, Girl Guides and the Girls Brigade marched down the streets of Wynnum Central to the sound of pipes and marching drums, their destination, the RSL car park for the annual wreath laying service.
Wreaths were laid at the foot of the memorial statue by members of parliament, Ross Vasta, Paul Lucas, Peter Cummings and many more as a gesture of respect for those who fought in the wars.
Toby of Nazareth House has attended the wreath laying ceremony every year. Anzac Day has personal meaning to Toby, whose uncle and father both fought in World War One. It offers a chance to “Reflect on what happened… they did a good job, especially in Gallipoli and we praise them highly.”
Yesterday he laid the wreath for the Nazareth House service in memory of the nurses who went to war to tend to the sick and wounded. “Anzac day should never die.”
It was great to see that young people to, have found meaning in Anzac Day. Cadet, Robyn believes it’s important to “remember all the people who have gone to war and fought for our country.”
It’s “All about the sacrifice they made and what they made it for, and everyone coming together to show their appreciation,” says her friend and fellow Cadet, Erin who has been attending the ceremony since she was little.
Many of us today are untouched by war and can only imagine the horrors experienced by our brave soldiers. As the foghorn soared across a silent crowd, thoughts went out to those who gave the greatest sacrifice possible to give. They remain young eternally in our memories, and shall never die as long as we remember, Lest we Forget.