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Navy Comes To Honour Reservists

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Navy cadets from T.S. Krait, along with their Commanding Officer Lt. Peter Green ANC, were special guests at this year's Reserve Forces Day in Wondai

July 4, 2017

Wondai’s 12th annual Reserve Forces Day commemoration was held on Sunday and – as usual – guests came from all over Queensland for the occasion.

Reserve Forces Day commemorates the two million Australian men and women who have served in the Army, Navy and Air Force Reserves since 1948, as well as the many thousands who have served in the CMF and other volunteer formations over the years.

This year the Commanding Officer of the T. S. Krait Lieutenant ANC Peter Green and Wing Commander John Gill from the RAAF were special guests, along with South Burnett Mayor Keith Campbell, Deputy Mayor Kathy Duff, Cr Ros Heit, former Wondai Shire Mayor Percy Iszlaub and Jose de Silva, the Vice President of the Queensland branch of the Naval Association.

The theme of this year’s commemoration was to recall the many Australian reservists who have served in the Navy over the past century.

On Sunday, about 70 reservists, members of the public and invited guests gathered at the Wondai Cenotaph at 10:00am for the traditional flag-raising and wreath-laying ceremony to begin the event.

After the ceremony, marchers were able to enjoy tea and coffee supplied by the Wondai QCWA.

The tea break was followed at 11:00am by a parade from the Post Office reviewed by RAAF Wing Commander John Gill and Lt. Peter Green, and then a Recognition Service in Coronation Park led by former Wondai RSL president Wally Knight.

It included an address by Lt. Green; prayers led by Chaplain Vic Chapman; a reading of The Ode; the playing of The Last Post, Reveille and the national anthem; a benediction led by Vic Chapman; and then a bugle call to mark the end of Reserve Forces Day.

After this, guests enjoyed a post-parade get-together at the Wondai Diggers Club.

South Burnett Reserve Forces Day committee secretary Noel Selway said the committee was very grateful to many individuals and organisations who’d contributed to the day’s success.

These included the Department of Defence, the South Burnett Regional Council, South Burnett Security and Traffic Control, the Wondai and District Band, Wondai Show Society, the SES, Wondai Police, the Queensland Ambulance Service, the Wondai QCWA, Hotel Cecil, the Wondai Diggers Club, CROW-FM, ABC Southern Queensland and the group’s many friends

Wondai was one of only four towns in Queensland to mark Reserve Forces Day this year.

Other services were held at Ipswich, Brisbane and Currumbin on the Gold Coast.

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Lt. Peter Green from T.S. Krait began the day's proceedings by laying the first wreath at the morning's flag raising and wreath laying ceremony

The Krait's wreath was followed by others ...

... and a pile of wreaths quickly built up

After the wreath laying was over, Mayor Keith Campbell and Crs Ros Heit and Kathy Duff met three other special guests - Jim Boyle, Helen Ainsworth and Julie Lee, who'd come from Gympie with their horses to represent the Gympie troop of the 5th Light Horse Regiment

Meanwhile, Lt Green showed his cadets where they should march to for the day's parade

A large crowd gathered outside the Wondai Post Office to watch the parade assemble and enjoy tea and coffee provided by the Wondai QCWA; Cr Ros Heit caught up with Elaine Madill and Sue Bradley from the Wondai Regional Art Gallery, who'd come to witness the day's events

Riders and walkers from the Gympie Troop of the 5th Light Horse Regiment led the parade from the Post Office along Mackenzie Street to Coronation Park ...

... followed by the T. S. Krait band and cadets, and then representatives of the 25th Battalion Association ...

... and finally by a much larger group of marchers following the 49th Battalion Association's banner

At the conclusion of the march, marchers returned through Coronation Park for the day's Recognition Service

Reserve Forces Day secretary Noel Selway sounded the bugle to conclude the Recognition Service

Old friends Wally Knight and Percy Iszlaub chatted after the formalties; Percy was another special guest this year

Participants and spectators stood patiently in the brilliant sunshine for the Recognition Service; afterwards, everyone adjourned to the nearby Wondai RSL for some welcome refreshments


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