It was privilege to speak at the Hallett Cove Anzac Dawn Service. The Hallett Cove and Districts Lions Club did a brilliant job again orchestrating the morning and along with the community they are building a brilliant tradition.
Here is a copy of my speech:
Thank you to all who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Thank you to all who have served and currently serve in the Australian defence forces.
Thank you to the families of past and present serving members, to the service organisations who support our defence families, to the countless organisations who provide care, assistance and material benefit to our defence communities.
Thank you for your selfless sacrifice, for your dedication to the protection of our freedoms. Thank you for your service to our great nation.
We are eternally grateful, and this morning, we gather, to pay our respect and acknowledge your generous contribution to the protection of our people and our nation.
As the ranks of our senior veterans diminish, we must ensure that this special day continues to honour their sacrifice and service.
It must also be a day to honour and recognise the men and women of our defence force fighting for modern Australia in our more recent campaigns and peace keeping missions, from Afghanistan and Iraq to the Solomon Islands.
Despite the years that have passed between our ANZAC’s and today’s serving members; the ANZAC spirit, patriotism and mateships remain as relevant and prevalent amongst our current service personnel as it did amongst the ANZAC’s.
The ANZAC spirit is an important link between the generations of Australians who have served our country despite the years that pass and despite the campaigns our defence force fights.
Today is not about glorifying war but about reflecting on past events and acknowledging how fortunate we are to live in this great and peaceful nation, because our fellow men and women have been prepared to fight and serve for our protection and peace.
It is heartening to see so many people attending this morning’s dawn service and especially so many younger members from our community. This morning, let us pay tribute to the ANZAC spirit of our current and former serving members, to those lost in training, operations, the wounded, injured and ill – all in defence of our freedoms and Australian way of life.