Karuah Dawn Service gathers town for ANZAC memorial

Flags in front of Karuah RSL.

TRADITIONS were heartily observed by hundreds at the ANZAC Dawn and Morning services at Karuah on Tuesday, 25 April.

Into the foggy sunrise there emerged a large crowd of more than 500 people, a larger crowd than usual, uniting to observe one of the most time-honoured and reverent events on the Australian calendar.

As the morning cleared into a great day, commemorators joined the march from Tony King Automotive down to the ANZAC War Memorial, overlooking the Karuah River.

The marchers, which included a contingent from local Royal Australian Air Force veterans, were treated to ceremonial songs upon the bagpipes, specially chartered for this year’s services.

“Despite the holiday, the Karuah Primary School was well represented,” local resident Marion Brown informed NOTA.

The Service featured the traditional Hymns, National Anthem, prayers and wreath-laying, with bugle soundings of the Last Post and The Rouse.

“The Karuah Dawn Service holds a special place in my heart, and every year, more people come – it looked like the entire town turned out this year,” special guest Member for Port Stephens Kate Washington told NOTA.

“I was humbled to have the opportunity this year to share my reflections on ANZAC Day, and the unimaginable sacrifice paid by too many.”

Chris Fraser, President of the Karuah RSL, told News Of The Area, “The RSL served breakfast from 7am, free for all who attended, and put on by the Directors of the RSL, as a way to give back to the community.

“It was a fantastic day had by all, and we were proud to host everyone at the RSL afterwards,” Mr Fraser added.

The RSL successfully held Two-Up on the premises, which would have come as somewhat of a relief for many in town, given the controversy of last year’s cancellation.

With the brakes applied by the COVID pandemic before that, this was the first time in three years that the Karuah RSL had hosted Two-Up on ANZAC Day.

By Thomas O’KEEFE

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