HUNDREDS of people turned out for the Anzac Day 2022 ceremony in Taree on Monday..
While early morning showers threatened to put a dampener on the event, the weather cleared in time for the march and the service held at the Memorial Clock in Victoria Street.
Club Taree chief executive officer, Paul Allen was the master of ceremonies and area high schools were prominent in the official service.
Cundletown Public School student and budding poet, Connor Wood, 10, who featured in a Manning River Times front page story on Friday, December 10 2021, read the poem he penned last year titled "War". He received a rousing reception from the crowd.
Member for Lyne, Dr David Gillespie described Anzac Day as 'an emotional day as we honour all those who answered the call.'
"As a nation we echo out thanks to those who have served,'' he added
He pointed out that more than half the 50,000 Anzacs who served in the Gallipoli campaign in 1915 were either killed or injured.
RELATED: Photos of Taree's Anzac Day march
"No wonder the day is into seared in the memory,'' he said.
"This was also the first battle that we served as a nation,'' Dr Gillespie continued.
"We had sent people off to the Sudan and to the Boer War, but those were as colonial forces.''
Dr Gillespie also spoke on the defence of Australia during World War II when the nation was under attack from Japan.
"Most people, including myself, were pretty oblivious to what happened on our shores,'' he said.
"That was brought home when I visited the Kimberleys and saw the extent of some of the memorials up there. We all roughly know that bombs fell on Darwin, but to put it into perspective, more armaments and bombers and fighters bombed Darwin than bombed Pearl Harbour. A total of 235 people died in that first bombing raid, up to 400 others were wounded.
"They also bombed Broome, where 88 civilians were killed. Townsville and Mossman in Far North Queensland also had bombs dropped on them.
"We were seriously at war in Australia and it was kept very quiet because the powers thought it would be scary for everyone and there might be national panic.''
Dr Gillespie pointed out that his generation was fortunate that Australia wasn't involved in any major conflagration and he hopes this remains the case in the future despite the 'current situation in Europe and with the geo-political struggles happening in the Asia-Pacific.'
There has been one constant with the Taree Anzac Day ceremony for the 55 years. Hugh McCrindle OAM, 94, again led the recessional hymn and national anthems.
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