One of the defining images circulated on social media during the recent flood crisis has impressed Taree RSL Sub-branch vice president Darcy Elbourne.
As flood water submerged Fotheringham Park and low lying areas of Victoria Street, the lone solider statue at the front of the Taree War Memorial was photographed manning his post.
"We've just come through a one in 100 year flood and this lone soldier stood fast the whole time," Darcy exclaimed.
"The height of the flood came up to his breast pocket.
"It was incredible to see the footage of this soldier steadfast in the rain manning his post at the memorial in Taree."
The memorial was built in 1925 on the corner of Manning Street and Victoria Street, away from the Manning River and any major threat of flooding.
"It would have seen the 1929 flood but it was well out of reach," Darcy said.
"Due to the change in traffic conditions and how Taree was progressing, it was decided to move the memorial clock down to its present location in Fotheringham Park (in 1966)."
Away from his role with the Sub-branch, Darcy has a close connection with the memorial and park.
After moving from Tinonee, Darcy's grandfather lived near Mill Creek, now known today as Fotheringham Park.
It was incredible to see the footage of this soldier steadfast in the rain manning his post at the memorial in Taree.- Darcy Elbourne
"Dad remembered when they moved to town and the floods would come," Darcy said.
The war memorial boasts four plaques which signify those from the Manning Valley who served in World War I.
Unfortunately, there's a glaring error when it comes to the Elbourne family.
The plaque on the front of the memorial bares the names of soldiers killed in the war.
One of the names reads 'A. Elbourne' for Albert George Elbourne, Darcy's grandfather.
"My grandfather was only wounded," Darcy said.
"Even though he lost his jaw, he was repatriated back to Australia and lived a full life."
Albert's younger brother, Arthur Douglas Elbourne, was killed in the war just after his 21st birthday.
His name appears with those who served, survived and returned home.
"This mistake was made and never rectified but it shows the close connection I have with the memorial," Darcy said.
Meanwhile, the soldier statue won't be alone for much longer.
The installation of a replacement statue on the other side of the memorial started this week.
More on this to come.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
Make sure you are signed up for our breaking and regular headlines newsletters
Follow us on Twitter
Follow us on Instagram: @manningrivertimes
Follow us on Google News
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.