Tributes laid at the dawn service at Ballina last year.
Tributes laid at the dawn service at Ballina last year. Cathy Adams

Young and old pause to remember our fallen soldiers

YOUNG people with no experience of war are as much involved with the commemoration of Anzac Day as those who served in the forces.

School students join with the elderly on Anzac Day, April 25, to remember the terrible loss of Australian lives in all wars.

Like many Anzac Day organisers, Ballina RSL Sub Branch makes a point of inviting a senior student from one of the local high schools to deliver the keynote address during the main commemorative service. 

Honorary secretary Charles Nicholson says the invitation is rotated around the local high schools. 

"This keeps the younger generation involved and participating and furthering their own education," he said.

"Anzac Day in Ballina is a significant community event and draws large numbers of participants in the commemorative services and the march."

For those too frail to attend the official services, Ballina RSL members visit St Andrew's Nursing Home and the nursing wing of RSL LifeCare Ex-Services Home for Anzac "service and cheer".

Anzac Day is one of Australia's most important national occasions.

It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.

The Australian and New Zealand forces landed on Gallipoli on April 25, 1915, meeting fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders.

At the end of 1915 the allied forces were evacuated from the peninsula, with both sides having suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships.

More than 8000 Australian soldiers had died in that campaign alone.

The Anzac  Day march in Ballina starts at 10.30am in River Street, with the main commemorative service at 10.55am at the  RSL Memorial Park, Grant Street.

An RAAF FA-18 Super Hornet from Amberley will conduct a flypast. 

The dawn service will begin at 5.30am at the RSL park memorial.



Photo: Australian War Memorial

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