Sacrifices remembered

Main pic left to right: War veterans Alastair MacPherson, Alan Stringer, Kevin Trent (Deputy Mayor of South Perth) and Bert Wilcox. Bottom: Flight Lieutenant Sarah-Jane Leech.
Main pic left to right: War veterans Alastair MacPherson, Alan Stringer, Kevin Trent (Deputy Mayor of South Perth) and Bert Wilcox. Bottom: Flight Lieutenant Sarah-Jane Leech.

Over 650 people gathered to commemorate the day at a service conducted by the Reverend Peter Johnstone of the South Perth Uniting Church.

Como Secondary College student Ellie Christie addressed the crowd with a message on the value of peace, which set the tone for Flight Lieutenant Sarah-Jane Leech from The Royal Australian Air Force, who delivered a moving speech at the close of the ceremony.

Flight Lieutenant Leech, a pilot who has served with the RAAF in Iraq, Afghanistan, Solomon Islands, East Timor and Indonesia spoke of the sacrifice of current Australian Defence Force personnel, the courage they show and the contribution they make to the countries they serve in.

‘We gather here this morning to give thanks to all Australian soldiers, sailors and airmen, who, since before Federation, have given of themselves in the service of this wonderful country,’ she said.

‘For those currently deployed on operations around the world, we wish them mission success and a safe return home.

‘Our men and women work tirelessly to uphold our Australian ideals and to improve the lives of others.

‘It is on such occasions that we are reminded that the Anzac spirit extends beyond our own experience and throughout our modern day community.

‘It is the support of our community that affirms that our efforts are recognised as making a positive contribution to our society and our country.’

Representatives of the Returned and Services League, the City of South Perth, Australian Defence Force and federal and state parliaments laid wreaths to commemorate Australia’s servicemen and women.

The OC Major Woodhouse and men of 3 Squadron of the Pilbara Regiment mounted the Catafalque Party at the memorial service and Wesley College’s Hamish McCamish played the Last Post and Rouse.