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Anzacs honoured with gratitude and respect

Vietnam veterans after the Anzac Day service l-r: Geoff Wood, Victor Bartley, Tony Robinson, Ron Mcleod, Sid Morris, David Judd, Trevor Lees of Trangie and Bert Eade. Geoff, Victor, Tony, Sid and David are all originally from Bourke and Bert grew up at Louth. Photo TWH

Anzac Day was a chance for communities across the Outback, and across the nation, to pause, reflect and give thanks to Defence Force personnel, past and present.

It was a day of solemn gratitude, reflected in the marches and services across the Bourke, Brewarrina, and Walgett Shires, where large numbers attended the ceremonies in honour of those who gave service and sacrifice to their nation.

The Bourke Shire has a proud legacy of servicemen and women, from the Boer War, First and Second World Wars, Korean War, Vietnam War and the Middle East conflicts.

This Anzac Day was bittersweet for RSL President and Vietnam veteran Victor Bartley, reunited with three veterans from Bourke who also did tours of Vietnam during the troubled years of that war.

There were family descendants of World War veterans and people who just wanted to pay their respect and gratitude to those who served and died for their country.

In Bourke, the day began with the Dawn Service at 6am at the Cenotaph Precinct, a moving ceremony conducted in quiet reverence as the sun rose across the western plains.

There was time for old mates, families, and participants to head to the Bourke Bowling Club for the traditional Anzac breakfast, before preparations got underway for the march and the morning service at 11am.

This year, a large number of people lined Oxley Street to watch the parade, led by Victor Bartley, and RSL Vice President – ‘21 Charlie’ – Kelly Lienesch.

Three Vietnam veterans, originally from Bourke, made the trip back home to be part of the ceremony - Sid Morris, David Judd, and Tony Robinson. […]

Read more in the printed edition of The Western Herald.

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