2016 Reserve Forces Day Recognition Ceremony and Civic Reception
It is my honour and privilege to address you today.
Reserve Forces Day is an occasion for pride and celebration.
It is also a day for reflection and commemoration.
It is a day to acknowledge the stellar service of Australian reservists in theatres of war and in keeping the peace.
Today we thank the reservists who answer the call when natural disasters strike, at home and in our region, and provide humanitarian assistance in times of crisis.
We honour those reservists who have sustained injuries – both visible and invisible – during service, and those who have made the supreme sacrifice.
As we continue to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, and as we reflect on the victory on the Western Front, bought at great price, we remember the reservists who answered the call to war and were faithful servants of their country, even unto death.
And we see, with pride, their legacy – the Anzac legacy – in the service of reservists today, integral to the performance of the Australian Defence Force, and to the maintenance of our national and global interests.
When I joined the Queensland University Regiment in 1966, I was conscious of its distinguished history and its proud record of service to Australia.
I joined what was then known as the Citizens’ Military Force, and is now the Australian Army Reserve.
Our reserve forces have been known by different names in different places throughout the years, but all share a spirit of service and love of country.
The understanding and encouragement of family is vital to sustaining our reserves, and so I acknowledge, with goodwill and with gratitude, the sacrifice that families make to support our reservists.
And I thank the employers who also make sacrifices to support our defence reserves.
With great pride and optimism for the future, I thank all members of the Army, Navy and Air Force reserves for their enthusiasm and professionalism, and their loyal service to Australia.
I hope that all reservists, past and present, feel proud this Reserve Forces Day, and know that your country is proud of you.