Sunnybank RSL Sub-Branch Veterans Memorial Service
Sunnybank RSL Sub-Branch President Mr Hugh Polson, Vice-President Mr Harry Claassen; representing Councillor Kim Marx, Ms Michelle Allsop and Chairman of the Australians of Chinese Heritage War Memorial Committee, Mr Lewis Lee OAM, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.
I would like to recognise the traditional owners of this land upon which we meet, and pay tribute to the leaders, past, present and emerging of the Turrbal and Jagera peoples.
Thank you so much for inviting Graeme and I to attend this most solemn occasion and lay a wreath in memory of those we lost and in recognition of all veterans of the great conflicts in which Australian men and women have been called upon to serve this country.
As with many of you here today, this service has deep personal significance for my family. Graeme and my brother-in-law, Andrew will place a floral tribute a little later, to honour the service of their father – my father-in-law Trevor Nimmo, a proud member of the Sunnybank sub-branch, who served in the RAAF in World War II. While today is deeply personal for our family, in many ways, it is emblematic of the circumstances of a significant proportion of Australian families – families who have been touched by the tragedy of war and the honour of service. It explains why Australians young and old, actively commemorate ANZAC day and attend local services of recognition such as this.
Today, we are joined by veterans of the Vietnam War, the Gulf War and Afghanistan along with family members, descendants and friends of those who currently serve or have served in the Australian Armed Forces.
The events unfolding in Europe give us all pause for thought. It is a reminder that our way of life, our freedom and the democracy we celebrate on an election day such as this – was hard fought (for) and hard won.
We owe a great debt of gratitude to all those we honour here today.
Lest we forget.