It may have started raining today but that didn’t put a dampener on the Anzac ceremony at Whitton. The town came out determined to pay their respects despite the heavy clouds.
The event began with a march to Whitton Park, where the locals laid wreaths at the gate. Names of the fallen were then read out in honour of their service to the country.
Though, it wasn’t a day of sadness nor celebration, rather a day of remembrance.
“For the cadets, it’s important that they remember and are able to participate,” Lieutenant Owen said.
Lt. Owen was all smiles as he directed his cadets on the main street, and was eager to introduce his cadet, Elijah Ingram (CUO – Cadet Under Officer), who is one of few Indigenous Australians involved in the cadetship.
“I joined cadets about six years ago because one day I saw the cadets doing an Anzac Day service,” CUO Ingram said.
“They were doing all these fancy things and I was like, that’s what I want to do.”
CUO Ingram commented that he is able to apply his knowledge of the land (Wiradjuri) to his service with the cadets.
“If in an emergency there’s several different ways you can get water, that allows me – when we do certain activities with cadets – to help those identify where it’s safe to drink.”
Sergeant Cherie Knox and her mother, Lyn Rennes, attend the Anzac ceremony every year. I had a chat with them to learn about their family’s history.
Sgt. Knox spoke about why the day was so important to her.
“Today is a special day for me particularly because my grandfather was a serviceman, and my family all were as well, from both sides,” Sgt. Knox said.
“My grandfather served in the first world war, and was one of the first soldiers settled here [Whitton] in 1920,” Ms Rennes said.
“There’s a lot of history here, and it’s great to see the people turn up to honour the fallen.”