Saturday, April 26, 2008

Dawn Service Villers-Bretonneux

It has taken a bit to write this one. I find it stunning that this was the first Australian Dawn service at Villers-Bretonneux. The whole World War 1 memory for me was the vicious but almost futile fighting that went on in the Somme. My Grandfather fought in these battles. He was so badly wounded he was put off the Hospital ship in South Africa believing he would not make it back to Australia.
Well he did and I guess you can say I am living proof of that fact. His post war life in Australia was a struggle as the legacy of the shrapnel wounds to his head left him largely incapable of real work. During the depression he had to work for his pension and worked on the Hunter Valley rail tunnels for the meager care that was forthcoming for our war wounded.My Grandmother did House cleaning and took in ironing to support the family.
The history of Australians on the European front is famous, our efforts clearly leaving an indelible mark on the community.
To suggest that we should not have a dawn service at this site forever more, particularly as there are so many Australians in Europe is at best ludicrous.


Clearly the citizen's of Villers-Brettoneux have not.


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