Thursday, April 23, 2009
Anzac Day 2009 in New Zealand tomorrow...
Anzac Day 2009: We Will Remember Them:
Anzac Day commemorates all New Zealanders killed in war and honours returned servicemen and women.
Anzac Day is observed with remembrance services till 1 pm, followed by a relaxed holiday afternoon. The Dawn Service is today the most popular of the Anzac Day observances. Wreath-laying ceremonies in remembrance for fallen soldiers will take place at war memorials and RSA buildings around the country.
The date itself marks the anniversary of the landing of New Zealand and Australian soldiers – the ANZACs – on the Gallipoli Peninsula in 1915. The aim was to capture the Dardanelles, the gateway to the Bosphorus and the Black Sea.
Thousands lost their lives in the campaign, among the dead were 2721 New Zealanders, almost one in four of those who served on Gallipoli.
At the end of the campaign, Gallipoli was still held by its Turkish defenders.
There are now no veterans left from Gallipoli or the First World War. Bright Williams, who passed away in 2003, was the last, and the number of Second World War veterans becomes fewer each year. Many young New Zealanders now attend the services. Some wear the medals their grandparents and great-grandparents won during war.
Remember those who gave everything for their country on Anzac Day, April 25th 2009.
Royal New Zealand Returned and Services' Association