Courage, Endurance, Mateship, Sacrifice…

Kokoda Track This morning, just prior to the rising of the sun, Australian’s for all walks of life gathered in the parks of our cities and our small country towns to honour the men and women of our military who made the ultimate sacrifice so we may enjoy the life we do today.

 A life in Australia that is governed by a democratic process and free from many of the troubles that we see around the world today.

As I stood silently by the Memorial in our local park the sun was piercing the eastern horizon on a glorious morning, the Kookaburras’ were heralding the arrival of a new day and I thought how lucky am I to have grown up in this great Nation of ours.

Our outback travels take us through many small towns and communities in this vast country of ours and it was from these places that the young men of a new Nation enlisted to serve the Empire…

Bluey and the Boys, people just like you and me, men, just boys, that didn’t think twice about serving King and Country.

Today marks the 100th Anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli, Turkey, in 1915, a place where the term ANZAC was forged on that small wind swept peninsular, stained forever with the blood of our brave and courageous…

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; 
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. 
At the going down of the sun and in the morning 
We will remember them.”

Lest We Forget

Australian Military

Trilby Station (Outback Australia)

Trilby Station, Outback Australia (Blog)Once a part of the million acre Dunlop property, the first in the world to undertake sheep shearing by mechanical means in 1888, Trilby Station today comprises 320,000 acres and runs up to 24,000 merino sheep and has an extensive goat enterprise.

The Station is situated on the Darling River near the small locality of Louth and approximately 125 kilometres south-west of Bourke.

The area is rich in aboriginal history and more contemporary Australian history.  They say that time spent atop Mt Oxley nearby to Bourke, looking across the great expanse to the west rekindles the experience of explorers’ Stuart and Hume in 1829 where they felt that “this would never be the haunt of civilised man”.

Our hosts are Liz and Gary and the Murray family can trace their settlement on the Darling River near Louth back six generations to 1860.

Darling River, Outback Australia

We have a camp looking down onto the mighty Darling River, which is still flowing strongly despite being much lower than in September last year.

And being ANZAC Day we are heading off to a memorial service to honour our fallen at the  small township of Louth, and of course, a few beers in the pub afterwards.

Lest We Forget…

 Click here to see where Baz, “The Landy” is today…

Photos; Baz The Landy

Remembering our Courageous Fallen (ANZAC Day)

Baz and a Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel, Menari Village, Papua New Guinea
Baz and a Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel, Menari Village, Papua New Guinea

The 25th of April is a day that Australian’s reflect on the military service Australian men and women have given to our country. 

To remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice; to remember the Australian men and women who are currently serving in theatres of war, and in peace keeping roles around the world.

To all I say, thank you.

Something close to me is the time I spent living in Papua New Guinea and the times that I have visited since leaving, more recently in 2006 when I walked the Kokoda Track with a good mate, Bob Todd.

The Kokoda Track saw some of most fierce fighting that Australian troops have ever faced.

Courage, Endurance, Mateship, Sacrifice - Kokoda Track, Papua New Guinea
Courage, Endurance, Mateship, Sacrifice – Kokoda Track, Papua New Guinea

And we should never forget the sacrifices that were made by our good friends, legends of the Kokoda Track, the Fuzzy Wuzzy Angelsthe Papuan New Guineans who carried supplies and our wounded, often making the ultimate sacrifice at the hands of an unyielding foe.

Standing at the top of the final hill after six days along The Track, Bob and I looked back over the ranges and I swear we could hear that distinctive Aussie drawl…

 The sounds of mates helping their mates.

An enduring Australian quaility - Mateship. Bob and Baz, the Kokoda Track trails into the distance behind us
An enduring Australian quality – Mateship

And I’m sure that on this day if you were to stand on the battlefields of the Somme or the beaches of Gallipoli, if you listen carefully, you too will hear our boys and girls; the men and women who never returned home to loved ones!

Our memory of them will live on forever…

Lest We Forget

Kokoda
Our memory of them will live on forever – Lest We Forget (photo credit: Australian War Museum)