Despite the recent nasty weather leaving Karuah residents without power for most of the week, ANZAC Day Centenary Dawn Service’s still went ahead.
Thanks to the hard work of Karuah RSL Staff, Sub Branch Members, volunteers and Ausgrid workers to get the Karuah RSL up and running for celebrations to honor and remember our servicemen and women went ahead.
The Karuah Dawn Service was absolutely blessed with such a beautiful morning as the warm sun slowly rose over the tranquil Karuah River.
Sub Branch President Mr Peter Fidden was quite pleased with this years’ service, attracting around 600 people for the morning March and Dawn Service in Memorial Park, before retiring back at Karuah RSL for a cold beverage or hot cupper and BBQ breakfast.
Attendants all joined outside the local club at the Sub Branch Memorial Wall for the 9am service where the sun was beaming with warmth and the service went off without any hiccups Mr. Fidden told Myall Coast News.
Local and surrounding schools were presented with the Karuah District 100 Year Commemoration book recently put together to honor local Veterans stories and memories, Port Stephens Local Member Kate Washington also attended the Dawn Service.
Money raised on the day will be donated to Karuah Public School,
Ross Parr from the Karuah RSL told Myall Coast News, “We are hoping to raise $1200 to send 20 students for swimming lessons.”
As the sun rose over Alum Mountain, many Bulahdelah residents gathered at the Cenotaph on Meade Street for the Dawn Service.
The service was led by Stephen Rae, from the Bulahdelah Uniting Church and Eric Saville, the President of the Bulahdelah RSL Sub Branch.
Eric Saville spoke to Myall Coast News, “I enjoy the Dawn Service because it is the awakening of a new day. Each year I pray for peace.”
Stephen Rae spoke words about the selfless actions of veterans and acknowledged our duty to remember them.
The community enjoyed a lovely time of fellowship after the service as the Bulahdelah War Memorial Trust provided a sausage sizzle, tea and coffee and Anzac biscuits.
The Anzac March took a new route this year and began at the Showgrounds, outside the Memorial Gates.
The march went along Stuart Street, then Stroud Street and turned into Meade Street.
Many people stood along these streets and watched family members and school students and members of the community march to the tune of a percussion band.
When asked about the feeling of marching with other veterans, Eric Saville commented, “The comradeship that you have with other veterans is special, it is not like any other friendship.”
The 11am service was well attended and was led by Stephen Rae with local Bulahdelah residents and service personnel partaking in the service with prayers, music and speeches about the veterans who served.
There was a large amount of Bulahdelah clubs and residents laying wreaths this year.
The sunny day allowed for the residents to mingle around the Cenotaph, before service personnel had a lunch at the Bowling Club.
5.45am Saturday 25 April and it is obvious from the crowd that this will be a special day at Tea Gardens.
By all accounts this was the biggest attendance to the Dawn Service in everyone’s memory.
It seemed the whole community had attended to remember those who 100 years ago had gone thousands of miles from home to fight for the lifestyle we enjoy today.
From babies to the more elderly, there was a flood of emotion showing that the memories are as strong as ever with no sign of waivering in the future.
Once more at the March and 10am Service the crowds were huge showing that the memory of ANZAC will always hold a special place in our minds.
A community that earlier in the week was left without power and a huge clean-up has shown that we will always Remember Them.