Australian Bravery Decorations and Awards Investiture Ceremony
Kaye and I are delighted to welcome you all to Government House.
I extend a particular welcome to our most honoured guests, the recipients of the Australian Bravery Decorations under the Australian honours system, and to your proud families, friends and colleagues.
The Australian Bravery Decorations are our nation’s pre-eminent awards for the recognition of acts of bravery.
Their purpose is to recognise acts of bravery by people whose selfless actions, in perilous situations, amaze and inspire us.
Government House is the people’s house, and it is on behalf of the people of Australia that we have gathered you together, to express our highest regard and sincere admiration, and to honour you, on behalf of your fellow Australians.
We honour you in the name of everyone you sought to save, and we honour you in the name of their family and friends.
We honour you for putting the lives of others before your own.
And we honour you for living, in that one moment, the noblest aspect of the human spirit: to protect and care for each other, even when we are strangers; even when to help is to place yourself in danger.
I know that none of you were thinking of honour or recognition, when you placed yourselves in the path of danger.
I know that ceremonies like this one were the farthest things from your minds, in the terrible immediacy of those moments.
I acknowledge that many of the incidents for which you are honoured today had a sad ending, and I hope that those who lost a loved one can take comfort in the extraordinary efforts made to save them.
And I also know that many of you still feel the consequences of the event for which you are recognised today.
Part of the purpose of this ceremony is to demonstrate directly to you the love and support of your community.
It is also intended to celebrate the capacity of ordinary people to do extraordinary things.
And it is entirely to thank you for your selfless actions which reaffirm our faith in each other and in the highest values of our community.
Heroes live among us, and they wear the Australian Bravery Decorations.
As Queensland’s Governor, I have the prestigious honour of speaking on behalf of all Queenslanders, and indeed I do so when I say, Kaye and I are truly enamoured of your actions.
Hosting events like this, here at Fernberg, is one of our most treasured public duties, and we look forward to offering you all some genuine hospitality to accompany the very genuine and heartfelt admiration we feel for each and every one of you.