News Release

Perth Latter-day Saints Join in Honouring ANZAC Sacrifices

 

The Honour Avenues plaques in King's Park in Perth commemorate service personnel from Western Australia who served in the World Wars and other engagements and never returned. The plaques have been carefully maintained by the RSL Highgate Honour Avenues Group on behalf of the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority since 1922. For seven years running, members and friends of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Perth have assisted the RSL by organizing the cleaning of the 1600 plaques on the Honour Avenues in preparation for ANZAC Day.

This year’s project took place Friday 21st April under the direction of Anouck Van Dyck. The project began with a Remembrance Service conducted by Rodney Halcombe of the RSL, in which he spoke about the ultimate sacrifice made by the men and women whose names appear on the plaques.

He spoke of two brothers who were killed on the same day in the same battle, one age 27 and one 33, and how this would have impacted their mother who placed the plaques honouring her sons. Sacrifices like this occurred thousands of times as brave Australian men and women answered the call of their mother country.

Two participants in the cleanup talked about what ANZAC Day means to them. Chantal Jackson, who brought her two children to help said, “What a blessing it is that I was born in Australia and so were my children. We look at the plaques while we are cleaning them. We read the names and dates and reflect on these men and women with families like our own who fought for freedom. It makes me proud to teach my children how to serve in our community and to tell them about the ultimate sacrifice they made for us.”

Ray Brown reflected on the contributions his family has made in defense of freedom. “My grandfather served in the Camel Corps of the Light Horse in the Sinai, and my father served in World War Two. We were lucky; they came home. My grandmother's brother was not so fortunate. He was sent to Gallipoli and then to Belgium, where he was killed. I recently retired after 30 years in the Air Force, where I worked as an air traffic controller. My service took me all around Australia and overseas to Somalia. My son served in the Army, making four generations of my family who have now served in the Australian military.”

After singing the national anthem, the participants went to work and got their job done in a couple of hours. They then enjoyed a sausage sizzle and mingling in the park on a beautiful autumn day in Perth.

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