Social distancing and isolation is one of the things that we can do in the Australian community to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). This isolation however has resulted in the cancellation of a vast majority of events that people hold dear to their hearts including the ANZAC Day Commemorative Services.
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Traditionally, dawn services are held at war memorials and RSL's right across Australia including the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne, VIC and the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, ACT just to name a couple. Thousands of people gather at these services to show their respects for soldiers who have fought for our freedom, for all of those fallen soldiers and for those who are still fighting in the present day.
ANZAC (which stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) Day is held on the 25th of April every year as it marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.
Since then, ANZAC Day now commemorates Australia’s contribution to the Second World War, the Vietnam War and other ongoing conflicts such as that which still exists in the Middle East.
The first ever ANZAC Day commemoration was held in 1916 where there were marches held throughout London and many parts of Australia. While there is usually a dawn service held every ANZAC Day, there are also other commemorative marches held throughout the day which veterans participate in.
Did you know:
- The spread of COVID-19 has impacted and even suspended the Australian Defence Forces missions across the Middle East, which is continuing to be reviewed as the crisis evolves.
- Rosemary is a herb that is said to grow wild on the Gallipoli peninsula and is worn as a symbol of remembrance on ANZAC Day.
- Ever wondered about the origin of the ANZAC biscuit? They were a hard biscuit eaten by soldiers as a bread substitute that was often ground up and eaten as porridge. The sweet biscuits we know of today were developed by the mothers, wives and girlfriends of soldiers that was sent to the frontline by ships of the Merchant Navy.
- The Last Post (the bugle call) has been used throughout history to signify the end of the day and is also played during ceremonies as a tribute to the dead.
- The Ode if the fourth stanza of a poem written by Laurence Binyon entitled ‘For the Fallen’ and has been recited in ceremonies since 1919;
"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them."
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