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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

The Hunter remembers our soldiers’ sacrifices

Hunter residents have gathered today to commemorate our soldiers’ sacrifices during a Remembrance Day like no other.

With COVIDSafe practices to consider, many Australians chose to commemorate the occasion virtually through livestreamed events from home or work rather than at traditional services.

Some Novocastrians, however, observed the moment at several different services across the Hunter.

The Merewether-Hamilton-Adamstown RSL Sub-Branch hosted a service at the striking heritage war memorial in Gregson Park, Hamilton.

Remembrance Day event organiser, James Mackay OAM, said attendees welcomed the chance to commemorate in person.

“Normally there are a number of ceremonies for different occasions held around Newcastle each year but, as far as I am aware, only two went ahead this year,” he said.

“It was about remembering the members of our armed forces who served and actually paid a supreme sacrifice, that includes all wars and conflicts and peace keeping operations – 102,888 Australians have given their lives serving our nation since the beginning of World War I.

“It’s an opportunity to acknowledge our responsibility to thank them for what was so hard to achieve.”

Mr Mackay added it would be one for the history books and that what Australians were facing was nothing in comparison to the sacrifice our soldiers made.

“Remembrance Day, nothing compares with that,” he said.

“I just think people wanted to remember the sacrifice of Australians who fought and died for their country so that we could enjoy the quality of life that we do and, when you look at the many and varied trouble spots around the world, you realise how lucky we are.”

A number of other services were held around the region, including one at Civic Park in Newcastle and another at Maitland Park.

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