Remembering each year, the sacrifices made

LEST WE FORGET: Anzac Day remembers the soldiers who fell on that first day of the Gallipoli campaign, April 25, 1915 and all the serving military personnel who came after them. Picture: Shutterstock
LEST WE FORGET: Anzac Day remembers the soldiers who fell on that first day of the Gallipoli campaign, April 25, 1915 and all the serving military personnel who came after them. Picture: Shutterstock

Each year on April 25, Australians make the pledge: "Lest we forget".

This is a day when we acknowledge the sacrifices made during war through reflection, parades, sport and playing two-up.

After so many Anzac Day events were cancelled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year Veterans' Affairs Minister, Darren Chester, is encouraging all Australians to honour the day in a number of ways.

"Last year Australians came together like never before to mark Anzac Day during the onset of the coronavirus pandemic," Mr Chester said.

"And this year, whether it's attending a local service or standing in your driveway and lighting up the dawn, I encourage all Australians to continue the tradition of honouring our service personnel in a way that is solemn and respectful," he said.

Anzac, an acronym of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, marks the day volunteer soldiers landed at Gallipoli, Turkey on 25 April 1915.

The dawn landing saw almost 9000 soldiers killed, and the sacrifice was honoured at the first Anzac Day in 1916.

In 2021, Anzac Day continues to bring Australians together to reflect on the sacrifice of those first Anzacs, and all of those soldiers who would come after them.

"Anzac Day is the most sacred day of commemoration on the Australian calendar," Mr Chester said.

"It provides all Australians with the opportunity to remember and reflect on the service and sacrifice of our past and current service personnel as well as honour the more than 102,000 Australians who have given their lives in service of our nation," he said.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to affect our communities, the Department of Veterans' Affairs is inviting Australians to commemorate Anzac Day 2021 in a number of ways, including:

  • Tuning in to watch the dawn service and national ceremony from the Australian War Memorial.
  • Leaving a poppy and message on the virtual poppy wall lestweforget.gov.au.
  • Taking part in the RSL's 'light up the dawn' campaign.
  • Attending a local community service (pending the latest health advice).
  • Taking part in private commemorations in a respectful, solemn and dignified way.

To help Australians plan a commemorative service in their local area or at home the Department of Veterans' Affairs have organised a range of free online resources.

To access these resources, visit the Anzac portal at anzacportal.dva.gov.au for more information.

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