Awesome ANZAC Day song

Submitted: Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:10
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Just wanted to share with everyone a terrific ANZAC Day song. Its by a great up & coming young country music artist called Todd Stewart. I might be a little bias as he is my brother!!!! BUT i think its great. The song is called "I won't forget the Diggers". Its written about my grandfather who was in the 2nd/19th battalion. Have a listen and tell me what you think.
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Reply By: Trace & Paul - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:13

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:13
OOPs Sorry i forgot to post the link. Here it is......
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Follow Up By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:50

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:50
Thanks for sharing with the ExplorOz community Trace.
Many on here will relate to that song.

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Reply By: Member - Toyocrusa (NSW) - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:23

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:23
Nicely done. A fitting tribute. Thanks for sharing it with us. Bob.

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Reply By: Lex M (Brisbane) - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:26

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:26
Believe it or not, some people don't frequent facebook.

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Follow Up By: Trace & Paul - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:32

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:32
Thankyou very much for posting the direct link. I was unsure how to do it!!!!
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Reply By: Drew - Karratha - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:34

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:34
Great song!! I saw a show last night on ABC about the Kokoda trail and realised how little I knew about our history and what our grandparents / parents did for us... (My grandfather was rescued from a river by the 'fuzzi wizzi's') Everytime you pass an 'old pensioner' have a think about what they have been through to give us what we have now....
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Reply By: Member - James W (NSW) - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:55

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 20:55
As an ex soldier and someone who has worked for the Defence Dept for over thirty years all I can say is it brought a tear to my eye. A great tribute to your Grandfather. Mine was a guard at the Cowra POW camp during the infamous breakout. They were a great generation that should always be remembered.

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Reply By: Shawn - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:08

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:08
Trace & Paul,
As a still serving soldier I must say that the song made the hair on the back of my neck stand up, only a few emotional sings about ANZACs and Australia do that for me.
Please pass onto your brother - Bewdy Mate
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Reply By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:23

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:23
Beneath the Faded Word
By Peter Thomas, Mt Martha, Vic.

It sat out in the shearing shed for 30 years or more,
With cobwebs, dust and binder twine, and sheep dung on the floor.
An old and rusted Lockwood kept its secrets from my eyes,

A cabin trunk of leather, there since 1945.
I asked my dad, who owned it and what we kept it for,
He replied, “It’s Uncle Basil’s, that he brought back from the war.
So don’t you bloody touch it, or I’ll tan your bloody hide!”
But that only made me more intrigued to see what was inside.
I wondered at its mysteries and the secrets that it hid,
Beneath the faded word “Tobruk” stencilled on the lid.

Near Wilcannia, where only hardy cattlemen will go,
Uncle Basil had a station, Baden Park, near Ivanhoe.
A strong and gentle man, who once rode the Birdsville Track
Just to prove he wasn’t hampered by the shrapnel in his back.

So I stood alone and weighed it up; which would I decide,
Should I leave the memories undisturbed, or take a look inside?
I knew I had to take a look to see what it’d hold.
Medals? Spoils from the war – silver, jewels or gold?

The old man went off fishin’ of a Sunday with Bob Gray,
Sp if I was gonna do it – that would have to be the day.
I started out determined – I was done by ten past two.
With half a broken hacksaw blade, I cut the padlock through,
But even as I opened it, the truth was plain and clear,
The old trunk held no gold or jewels, there was no treasure here .
A pile of letters tied with string, an old moth eaten flag,
A rusty metal helmet and mouldy webbing bag,
A cup made from a jam tin, an emu feathered hat,
And a newspaper clipping with the title “Desert Rat”,
Some photos of the pyramids – a rusty bayonet,
An IOU – Jack Carmody – two quid ( a two-up bet).

I folded out a faded map as the day began to wane,
Foreign places like Benghazi, Tobruk, El Alamein.
Then I came upon a satchel and a little leather book
And a photo of some young blokes – so I took a closer look.
It was 20 young recruits, their faces tanned and worn
From places like Cohuna, Moama and Bamawm.
Farmers, shearers, stockmen off to fight a noble war,
For the empire in a foreign land they’d never seen before.
And scrawled across the bottom, in writing rough and coarse,
Twenty names below the words, the Echuca Boys – Light Horse.

I turned the photo over, and there upon the back
Were words that sent a chill through me, and made my mouth go slack.
A solemn list of 20 – the fate of each the same.
Every one but Uncle Basil had a date beside their name,
Some said April ’43, some said June /July.
A record from our history, the date that each had died.
I turned back to the photo and looked in every face,
And written over each one was a month, a year, a place.
A grinning, sun-bronzed soldier’s face, each now with a name
Like November 1943 – the words El Alamein.

I wonder did they think, as they sailed across the foam,
That amongst them only one – Uncle Basil – would come home?
Recorded in that little book – I remember to this day –
A record of their actions and how each had passed away,

A mortar shell out on patrol; a sniper in the night;
A landmine took one’s legs off – he died before first light.
The death of each was brutal, the reality was stark.
Forty pages written there, I finished just on dark.

I slowly closed that record of the men who kept us free
And turned to see my father, standing silently.
He didn’t do his block as I expected that he would,
He just said, “Come on pack it up, I reckon that we should.”
So with loving care we packed away the treasures from the past,
When I came upon the photograph – it was put aside ‘till last –
And with new respect and love, I recorded there his fate.
Next to Uncle Basil I wrote April ’68.
Yeah, Dad and I we packed it up and put it back again
And wrapped it in a bit of tarp, to keep it from the rain.
We never spoke about it or discussed what I had read.
I reckon that was his way, to respect those men long dead.

There’s a statue of a digger in most every country town,
And a list of names of locals, who fought with great renown.
And now, when I go by, I remember what I read,
Sitting on the floor out there, in our old shearing shed.
And I think of Uncle Gordon, lost somewhere on Ambon,
Uncle Jack on the Kokoda and, in England, Uncle John.
I remember still that photo, with sadness and remorse,
That mob of grinning faces, the Echuca Boys – Light Horse.
In a cemetery near Ivanhoe lies a bloke who’s left his mark,
Basil Thomas, of Echuca, Tobruk and Baden park.

Lest We Forget

Cheers Kev
Russell Coight:
He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

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Follow Up By: Wilko - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:29

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:29
Thanks Kev
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Follow Up By: Trace & Paul - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:41

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 21:41
Sir Kev & Darkie,
Thankyou for sharing that poem! I was a blubbering mess by the time i reached the end....... EXCELLENT!
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Follow Up By: Isuzumu - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:33

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:33
Thanks Kev, was very moving
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Follow Up By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:45

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:45
Ta Kev. I'd like to pass that on to my mates.

Have a good one tomorrow.

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Follow Up By: Member - DOZER- Sunday, Apr 25, 2010 at 09:58

Sunday, Apr 25, 2010 at 09:58
Beudy Mate
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Reply By: Member - barbara M (NSW) - Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 22:33

Friday, Apr 23, 2010 at 22:33
That was really good have a son overseas on deployment now. Can you buy that track or an album
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Follow Up By: Trace & Paul - Monday, Apr 26, 2010 at 16:24

Monday, Apr 26, 2010 at 16:24
Hi Barb,
Although my brother does have a disc available to buy through itunes, this song unfortunately at this stage, it is not available to buy. I am sure it will make the next album though!!!!
Thanks Trace.
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Reply By: Member - John (Vic) - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 02:42

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 02:42
What a fabulous song.
Well done, Loved it.

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Reply By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:14

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:14
The Ode of Remembrance

To the Fallen

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children
England mourns for her dead across the sea,
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And glory that shines upon our tears.

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eyes, steady and aglow,
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

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.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again,
They sit no more at familiar tables of home,
They have no lot in our labour of the daytime,
They sleep beyond England's foam.

But where our desires and hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the night.

As the stars shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are stary in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Russell Coight:
He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

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Reply By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:21

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:21

Russell Coight:
He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

Lifetime Member
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Reply By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:32

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 06:32

Russell Coight:
He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

Lifetime Member
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Follow Up By: Muntoo - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 15:35

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 15:35
Every Aussie should be able to recite this song, even while in a coma.

Greatest song ever written by a top band.
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Follow Up By: vk1dx - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:42

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:42
I may be wrong but weren't the words to this song written by a vet.

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Follow Up By: Sir Kev & Darkie - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:54

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:54
It was written by Redgum's lead vocalist/guitarist John Schumann, based on the stories he heard from Returned Vietnam Veterans.

Royalties for the song go to the Vietnam Veterans Association Australia.

Cheers Kev

AASAM, Interfet Campaign and DFM
Russell Coight:
He was presented with a difficult decision: push on into the stretching deserts, or return home to his wife.

Lifetime Member
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Follow Up By: vk1dx - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 17:00

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 17:00
It just stirs so much up. The swamp was the worst. You never knew what was under there.

Brrrrrrrrrrr Makes me shiver.

Have a good day tomorrow. I would love to march but I haven't got the stamina. Have one for me guys.

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Follow Up By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 17:19

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 17:19
Phil, you're on mate....we'll do just that for ya.

Stay well aye.
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Reply By: Isuzumu - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:32

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:32
wonderful sentiments with very moving words and video.
think of your grandfather tomorrow
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Reply By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:33

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:33
These I want to share with you all.

Many of us who frequent this site will be involved with Anzac Day remembrance services tomorrow.

Enjoy your mate's company once more and remember those no longer with us.

Lest we forget.

The Anzac on the Wall

I wandered thru a country town 'cos I had time to spare,
And went into an antique shop to see what was in there.
Old Bikes and pumps and kero lamps, but hidden by it all,
A photo of a soldier boy - an Anzac on the Wall.

"The Anzac have a name?" I asked. The old man answered "No,.
The ones who could have told me mate, have passed on long ago.
The old man kept on talking and, according to his tale,
The photo was unwanted junk bought from a clearance sale.

"I asked around," the old man said, "but no one knows his face,
He's been on that wall twenty years, deserves a better place.
For some one must have loved him so, it seems a shame somehow."
I nodded in agreement and then said, "I'll take him now."

My nameless digger's photo, well it was a sorry sight
A cracked glass pane and a broken frame - I had to make it right
To prise the photo from its frame I took care just in case,
"Cause only sticky paper held the cardboard back in place.

I peeled away the faded screed and much to my surprise,
Two letters and a telegram appeared before my eyes
The first reveals my Anzac's name, and regiment of course
John Mathew Francis Stuart - of Australia's own Light Horse.

This letter written from the front, my interest now was keen
This note was dated August seventh 1917
"Dear Mum, I'm at Khalasa Springs not far from the Red Sea
They say it's in the Bible - looks like Billabong to me.

"My Kathy wrote I'm in her prayers she's still my bride to be
I just cant wait to see you both you're all the world to me
And Mum you'll soon meet Bluey, last month they shipped him out
I told him to call on you when he's up and about."

"That bluey is a larrikin, and we all thought it funny
He lobbed a Turkish hand grenade into the Co's dunny.
I told you how he dragged me wounded in from no man's land
He stopped the bleeding closed the wound with only his bare hand."

"Then he copped it at the front from some stray shrapnel blast
It was my turn to drag him in and I thought he wouldn't last
He woke up in hospital, and nearly lost his mind
Cause out there on the battlefield he'd left one leg behind."

"He's been in a bad way mum, he knows he'll ride no more
Like me he loves a horse's back he was a champ before.
So Please Mum can you take him in, he's been like my brother
Raised in a Queensland orphanage he' s never known a mother."

But Struth, I miss Australia mum, and in my mind each day
I am a mountain cattleman on high plains far away
I'm mustering white-faced cattle, with no camel's hump in sight
And I waltz my Matilda by a campfire every night

I wonder who rides Billy, I heard the pub burnt down
I'll always love you and please say hooroo to all in town".
The second letter I could see was in a lady's hand
An answer to her soldier son there in a foreign land

Her copperplate was perfect, the pages neat and clean
It bore the date November 3rd 1917.
"T'was hard enough to lose your Dad, without you at the war
I'd hoped you would be home by now - each day I miss you more"

"Your Kathy calls around a lot since you have been away
To share with me her hopes and dreams about your wedding day
And Bluey has arrived - and what a godsend he has been
We talked and laughed for days about the things you've done and seen"

"He really is a comfort, and works hard around the farm,
I read the same hope in his eyes that you wont come to harm.
Mc Connell's kids rode Billy, but suddenly that changed
We had a violent lightning storm, and it was really strange."
"Last Wednesday just on midnight, not a single cloud in sight
It raged for several minutes, it gave us all a fright
It really spooked your Billy - and he screamed and bucked and reared
And then he rushed the sliprail fence, which by a foot he cleared"

"They brought him back next afternoon, but something's changed I fear
It's like the day you brought him home, for no one can get near
Remember when you caught him with his black and flowing mane?
Now Horse breakers fear the beast that only you can tame,"
"That's why we need you home son" - then the flow of ink went dry-
This letter was unfinished, and I couldn't work out why.
Until I started reading the letter number three
A yellow telegram delivered news of tragedy
Her son killed in action - oh - what pain that must have been
The Same date as her letter - 3rd November 17
This letter which was never sent, became then one of three
She sealed behind the photo's face - the face she longed to see.

And John's home town's old timers -children when he went to war
Would say no greater cattleman had left the town before.
They knew his widowed mother well - and with respect did tell
How when she lost her only boy she lost her mind as well.
She could not face the awful truth, to strangers she would speak
"My Johnny's at the war you know , he's coming home next week."
They all remembered Bluey he stayed on to the end
A younger man with wooden leg became her closest friend

And he would go and find her when she wandered old and weak
And always softly say "yes dear - John will be home next week."
Then when she died Bluey moved on, to Queensland some did say
I tried to find out where he went, but dont know to this day
And Kathy never wed - a lonely spinster some found odd
She wouldn't set foot in a church - she'd turned her back on God
John's mother left no will I learned on my detective trail
This explains my photo's journey, that clearance sale
So I continued digging cause I wanted to know more
I found John's name with thousands in the records of the war
His last ride proved his courage - a ride you will acclaim
The Light Horse Charge at Beersheba of everlasting fame

That last day in October back in 1917
At 4pm our brave boys fell - that sad fact I did glean
That's when John's life was sacrificed, the record's crystal clear
But 4pm in Beersheba is midnight over here.......
So as John's gallant sprit rose to cross the great divide
Were lightning bolts back home a signal from the other side?
Is that why Billy bolted and went racing as in pain?
Because he'd never feel his master on his back again?

Was it coincidental? same time - same day - same date?
Some proof of numerology, or just a quirk of fate?
I think it's more than that, you know, as I've heard wiser men,
Acknowledge there are many things that go beyond our ken

Where craggy peaks guard secrets neath dark skies torn asunder
Where hoofbeats are companions to the rolling waves of thunder
Where lightning cracks like 303's and ricochets again
Where howling moaning gusts of wind sound just like dying men
Some Mountain cattlemen have sworn on lonely alpine track
They've glimpsed a huge black stallion - Light Horseman on his back.

Yes Sceptics say, it's swirling clouds just forming apparitions
Oh no, my friend you cant dismiss all this as superstition
The desert of Beersheba - or windswept Aussie range
John Stuart rides forever there - Now I dont find that strange.
Now some gaze at this photo, and they often question me
And I tell them a small white lie, and say he's family.
"You must be proud of him." they say - I tell them, one and all,
That's why he takes the pride of place - my Anzac on the Wall.


He was getting old and paunchy
And his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the RSL Club,
Telling stories of the past.

Of a war that he once fought in
And the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his mates;
They were heroes, every one.

And 'tho sometimes to his neighbours
His tales became a joke,
All his mates listened quietly
For they knew whereof he spoke.

But we'll hear his tales no longer,
For ol' Bob has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer
For a soldier died today.

He won't be mourned by many,
Just his children and his wife.
For he lived an ordinary,
Very quiet sort of life.

He held a job and raised a family,
Going quietly on his way;
And the world won't note his passing,
'tho a Soldier died today.

When politicians leave this earth,
Their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing,
And proclaim that they were great.

Papers tell of their life stories
From the time that they were young,
But the passing of a soldier
Goes unnoticed, and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution
To the welfare of our land,
Some jerk who breaks his promise
And cons his fellow man?

Or the ordinary fellow
Who in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his Country
And offers up his life?

The politician's stipend
And the style in which he lives,
Are often disproportionate,
To the service that he gives.

While the ordinary soldier,
Who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal
And perhaps a pension, small.

It's so easy to forget them,
For it is so many times,
That our Bobs and Jims
Went to battle, but we still pine.

It was not the politicians
With their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom
That our Country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger,
With your enemies at hand,
Would you really want some cop-out,
With his ever waffling stand,

Or would you want a Soldier,
His home, his country, his kin,
Just a common Soldier,
Who would fight until the end?

He was just a common Soldier,
And his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us
We may need his like again.

For when countries are in conflict,
We find the Soldier's part
Is to clean up all the troubles
That the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honour
While he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage
At the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline
in the paper that might say:

~author unknown~

We will remember hem.

AnswerID: 414109

Follow Up By: Member - Russnic [NZ] - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 18:37

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 18:37
Thanks Fred G.
In my organising of the local ANZAC memorial Service I have had a gap to fill in, in the order with the late withdrawal of a local Politician.
Thanks I will read the A SOLDIER DIED tomorrow, that poem is still so appropriate.
Nicol R C
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Follow Up By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 18:58

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 18:58
Good onya mate, know where ya coming from !!! When I had that sent to me it had selected photos in between the paragraphs....made it so appropriate, but I couldn't put them up with the words. It was set up for a specific diggers passing.
Sgt. Nicol, I'll have one for ya tomorrow mate. Take care aye.

Goerke A F
ABUC R94635

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Reply By: Member - Doug T (NT) - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:54

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 08:54
RICHARD DALLEY STEWART : Service Number - NX50551 : Date of birth - 23 Aug 1918 : Place of birth - DRUMMOYNE NSW : Place of enlistment - PADDINGTON NSW : Next of Kin - STEWART GEORGE

War Crimes and Trials - Affidavits and Sworn Statements / NX50551 Cpl RD Stewart.

gift by Daughter

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Reply By: Fred G NSW - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 09:57

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 09:57
And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda
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Reply By: vk1dx - Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:32

Saturday, Apr 24, 2010 at 16:32
Thanks from a vet!!!

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Reply By: Trace & Paul - Monday, Apr 26, 2010 at 16:20

Monday, Apr 26, 2010 at 16:20
Thankyou to everyone of you who responded.
The poems and stories that were shared by you all are extremely moving tributes to a wonderful group of men and women who should always be remembered.
My 'PA" was in the 8th division in the 2nd/19th battalion and was a POW for many years.
My three children and I attended the ANZAC Day march in George street Sydney yesterday with my Dad and brother. This is a tradition in our family that hopefully will continue for many years. As we live North of Newcastle, it does become a very big day with a very early start and late finish......BUT one that is well worth it. My kids all wear shirts with a picture of my Grandfather on it with the title underneath 'I Wont Forget The Diggers'.
The Day is very moving for us, as is the spirit of the crowd.
As usual, it was well worth the effort.
I hope your day was as worthwhile as ours.
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