Prime Minister leads Anzac Day commemorations in Canberra
More than 30,000 people gathered this morning at the Australian War Memorial for the Anzac Day Dawn Service, commemorating the 108th anniversary of the Gallipoli landing.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese delivered the Commemorative Address highlighting the sacrifice of all Australians who have served in war and on operations.
Australian War Memorial Director Matt Anderson said he was proud that so many had chosen the Australian War Memorial as the place they wished to commemorate Anzac Day.
“This year’s Dawn Service attendance is a powerful reminder of the enduring connection so many people have to Anzac Day,” he said.
Dunghutti and Bundjalung man, Sub-Lieutenant Jordon Bradshaw of the Royal Australian Navy commenced the Dawn Service with a powerful yidaki (digeridoo) performance.
“Today we mark 108th anniversary of the landing on Gallipoli, an iconic moment in Australian history. But we also recognise the commitment and sacrifice of all who have served, those who continue to serve, and the families that love and support them” Mr Anderson said.
“Over the past three decades, more than 100,000 Australians have served in war, conflicts, peacekeeping, humanitarian and disaster relief operations around the world.
“We acknowledge veterans every day at the Australian War Memorial, but Anzac Day is special. Through the stories told in our galleries, and the space being created by the Memorial Development, we will highlight the unbroken thread that runs from the Ascot Gallipoli landing boat to the veterans who have signed the Tarin Kowt wall.”
The Veterans’ March, led and reviewed by Governor-General David Hurley, will comprise more than 1,000 veterans, who will march up Anzac Parade and onto the grounds of the Australian War Memorial.
The Governor-General will march with veterans of 1RAR Battalion Group, which he commanded in Somalia 30 years ago.
Veteran Dr Bob Worswick, who was a platoon commander in the same battalion, said it was important to recognise Australia’s contribution to the peacekeeping mission.
“Somalia was Australia’s first operational deployment of an infantry battalion since Vietnam. It was significant because it provided important lessons for subsequent peacekeeping missions,” Dr Worswick said.
The veteran, who served in locations including Somalia, Timor-Leste, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan said it was important to participate in the Anzac Day Veterans’ March.
“Recognising service is a really big thing in the military, and this sort of national remembrance is important for every generation of veterans,” he said.
The Dawn Service commenced at 5:30 am, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Veterans and Services Association commemoration will be held at 7:30 am followed by the Veterans’ March at 9:30 am and the Last Post Ceremony at 4.45 pm.
Free tickets to the latter can be booked on the Australian War Memorial website.
The Memorial will open to the public at approximately midday.
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