ANZAC Day - 2008


ANZAC Day 25 April is probably Australia's most important national occasion. It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War. And it marks far more than that.

In the 1960s, thousands of war veterans marched on Anzac Day, the passing parade outnumbering those who came to watch. Among many young people, in the anti-war mood of the Vietnam era, ANZAC Day was unpopular and seen as a glorification of war. Many feared that, as the veterans died off, so too would the ANZAC Spirit.

Forty years later the veterans marching on ANZAC Day are now outnumbered by the onlookers many of whom have little or no memory of war. As the old soldiers fade away, ANZAC Day thrives as our unofficial national day. Dawn services, once reserved for an exclusive brotherhood of returned servicemen, attract thousands who never served. And every year, more and more young Australians make the pilgrimage to Gallipoli, where it all began.

The Anzac Spirit endures.

As we mentioned last year, we have located over fifty per cent of those who served with us at '106'. This year a few more joined us, remembered those who are no longer with us, wondered where the others are and how they are doing, shared our experiences since the war and enjoyed some of the memories. Have a look at the reports. We hope you will join us next time too.

"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years contemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them."
For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon — 4th stanza