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Music Captures The Anzac Spirit

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Celebrating the true Anzac spirit … Eri Carey sang the NZ anthem in Maori and English and Elgin Leedie played the didgeridoo at this year’s Anzac Day commemoration service in Kingaroy

April 28, 2019

Anzac Day commemorates the sacrifices paid by Australians and New Zealanders at Gallipoli … so it’s fitting that people from the two lands play a key role in annual commemorations.

A Kingaroy Anzac Day regular, Maori singer Eri Carey, was joined in the Rotunda this year by local Indigenous ex-serviceman Elgin Leedie, whose bullroarer heralded the Lament played on a didgeridoo.

The morning commemoration followed a well-attended Dawn Service at 4:28am, and a pilgrimage to the Taabinga Cemetery war graves at 8:00am.

A large parade of veterans marched off from in front of the Kingaroy RSL Club at 10:30am heading to the gates of Memorial Park.  It was led by Scots pipers and included groups from local schools and sporting clubs, emergency services representatives, Scouts and Guides, and half a dozen vintage cars carrying veterans.

This year’s guest speaker was Sgt Garth Cummings from the Defence Force School of Signals at Cabarlah, who was accompanied by a contingent of students from the school.

They formed the Catafalque Party which stood guard at the Memorial throughout the ceremony.

South Burnett mayor Keith Campbell gave the opening address, and this was followed by a prayer led by Lieutenant Timothy Brown, from the Salvation Army, and the reading of the Resolutions.

Students from Kingaroy State High School, St Mary’s Catholic College and St John’s Lutheran School read the Roll of Honour while members of the public joined the day’s official party to lay wreaths, and Elgin Leedie played the Lament.

Don Davey and Warren Cockburn, from the Kingaroy RSL Sub-Branch, read the Ode and Matt Phillips played the Last Post before a minute’s silence was observed.

Commemorations concluded with the Rouse and “Abide With Me”, a short benediction and then the singing of the Australian and New Zealand national anthems before the Catafalque party dismounted to bring the ceremony to an end.

Afterwards, guests were invited to return to the RSL for a light lunch.

The Catafalque party takes up positions at Kingaroy’s war memorial

Conductor Matt Phillips led the Kingaroy State High School’s symphonic band through several hymns during the service …

… accompanied by singers from Kingaroy State High School’s choir, conducted by Susan Dowideit-Reiger

South Burnett Mayor Keith Campbell opened the commemoration service …

… and was followed by Tasleigh Gangemi from Taabinga SS, who read the 1st Resolution

Liam Cullen and Justine Evangelista from Kingaroy SS jointly read the 2nd Resolution …

…followed by Thomas Town from Coolabunia SS, who read the 3rd Resolution

Mayor Keith Campbell, Cr Terry Fleischfresser and Cr Danita Potter began this year’s wreath-laying

They were followed by Opposition Leader and Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington, who laid a wreath with students from Taabinga State School

The base of the cenotaph quickly began to be covered in wreaths …

… watched over by Catafalque party soldiers

After the ceremonies concluded, Mayor Keith Campbell congratulated Sgt Garth Cummings from the Defence Force School of Signals EW Wing, who was this year’s guest speaker

Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington talked with Jessica Ryan from St Mary’s Catholic College and Jordan Buckley and Taylah Manns from Kingaroy State High School … Jessica and Taylah led this year’s parade, and were presented with the flags they carried afterwards as a memento of the day

Sgt Cummings and Seaman Evans chatted with organiser Barry Krosch

Seaman Rebecca Candy and Signaller Alexandra Harker with Jean Black (centre), the oldest member of the Kingaroy-Memerambi Sub Branch

Compere Don Davey thanked Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington for taking time out of her busy schedule to attend … Mrs Frecklington earlier attended a dawn service at Currumbin

Barry Krosch with Doug Farmer OAM and his daughters Carolyn Farmer and Diane Graham, who travelled from Brisbane and Howard for the occasion … Doug is a former long-serving secretary of Kingaroy RSL Sub-Branch and sold Anzac Day poppies in Kingaroy’s main street for more than 20 years to raise funds for Legacy

Cadets from Wondai’s 135ACU also attended the Kingaroy commemoration service

Cr Danita Potter and her husband Shane were impressed with the large turnout

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Kingaroy’s Anzac Parade

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Anzac Day can be a deeply emotional time for Australia’s veterans and their families and some may find this time of year difficult.

The Department of Veterans Affairs has advised there are specialised counselling services and resources available.

  • Open Arms – Veterans & Families Counselling Service (formerly VVCS) provides free and confidential counselling and support for current and former ADF members and their families. They can be reached 24/7 on 1800-011-046. Visit the Open Arms website for more information.
  • DVA also provides help and treatment for any mental health condition. Phone 1800-555-254 or visit the DVA website

Veterans, their families and health care professionals can also visit the At-Ease Online portal for information about support available and online self-help tools, including:

  • High Res – An eToolbox with resources to help serving and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families to manage stress and build resilience.
  • PTSD Coach – Strategies to assist self-management of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms and treatment schedules.
  • On Track with the Right Mix – Strategies for finding the right balance of diet, alcohol and exercise.
  • Operation Life – information and resources on how to assist those at risk of suicide.

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