23 Apr 2010
Sunday the 25th
April, Anzac Day, is a day for reflection, to remember those Australians who fought for our country, surviving in conditions unimaginable today, some not making it home, others coming home with scars and injuries visible to the naked eye and others coming home with torturous memories and images burnt forever into their minds.
Of my friends and family, there are few diggers who talk freely about their experience during the war – having spent a lifetime trying to forget what they witnessed and how they survived and what they endured to make it back home.
Post Traumatic Stress was not yet a recognized after effect of battle and the counseling and psychological services offered to today’s troops was not on offer.
Our soldiers and their families faced the after effects alone, most too proud to reach out, but still managing to forge valued lives and treasured family environments for their children.
Having trained for months ahead of walking the Kokoda Track myself, I cannot fathom how these men and boys survived the terrain of war.
By comparison, the Kokoda Track is now a user friendly stroll to the Angels of the Anzac Troops, the Fuzzy Wuzzy’s, while we battled physical exhaustion, superficial injuries and pain beyond our belief. I couldn’t help but be in awe of our diggers and what they endured.
For me, Anzac Day is one of the most important days of the year; a day to express our gratitude, to celebrate our life, to thank the Anzacs and remember and honour them.
It is wonderful to see children still taking part in the Anzac parades across Australia and learning the importance of this day, for they are the ones who will carry our pride and the memory of these great men and women to the future generations.
Regardless of how busy your life now is, take the time, set an alarm if you have to, and join our nation in the Minute Silence on Anzac Day.
Lest We Forget.