By Abbey Cannan
The Tewantin Noosa RSL Sub Branch is hoping to see great support from the Noosa community for past and present veterans at this year’s Anzac Day events.
Tewantin Noosa RSL Sub Branch president Adel Amin said he was excited to be able to offer not only the veterans, but the whole community, the opportunity to have an Anzac Day ceremony following the cancellation of last year’s event due to Covid-19.
“I believe each one of us should honour and pay homage to those who have gone before us, particularly the service men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to give us the freedom that we live in,“ Mr Amin said.
“On the cenotaph there are a number of names of service men who fought and died in WWI. This is the one day in the year where the community can come out and say, thank you.
“The current and ex service men and women will be parading, along with Parade Commander, Paul Jenkinson.“
The Tewantin Noosa RSL Sub Branch ANZAC Day Events are as follows:
5:30am – Dawn Service in the Town Square at the Cenotaph
6:30am – Cemetery Service in the Tewantin Noosa RSL Cemetery
9am – Main ANZAC Day Parade steps off
9:30am – Main Cenotaph Commemorative Service & Wreath Laying by invitation only.
At conclusion of the Service, the general public will be free to lay wreath.
“After that, those with tickets for the lunch will go into the Digger’s Bar in the Club, but the Club is definitely open for both breakfast and lunch for the public in the main bistro,“ Mr Amin said.
“I believe the club is also running a Two-Up game.“
Mr Amin said although mask restrictions have been lifted, he recommended attendees bring a mask to the ceremony in case they cannot social distance.
“It’s not always possible to maintain the social distancing however a mask is a guarantee that you protect yourself and those around you,“ he said.
“We’d love to see as many come out as possible to support those veterans. We would be very appreciative to see that support from our great community.“
In the lead up to ANZAC Day, the Sub Branch will be selling ANZAC Day badges, key rings, pens and other merchandise from two sites to raise funds for the veteran community. They will be sold at Noosa Village Shopping Centre from Monday 19 to Saturday 24 April and also Poinciana Street from Tuesday 20 to Saturday 24 April.
Acknowledging that some people may still feel uncomfortable in crowd situations, RSL Queensland will again offer people the opportunity to Light Up The Dawn and stream a digital dawn service at 6am on lightupthedawn.com.au.
RSL Queensland State President Tony Ferris said regardless of how Queenslanders choose to mark ANZAC Day, the most important thing is to pause and reflect on those who served and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for the nation.
“When COVID-19 forced the cancellation of ANZAC Day services and marches across Australia last year, the nation united and rallied to Light Up The Dawn on driveways, balconies and front yards to let veterans know that their service and sacrifice will never be forgotten,” Mr Ferris said.
“As this pandemic begins to ease, we are grateful to offer people a choice in 2021 in how they pay their respects, whether at a dawn service, marching with their mates, or honouring our veterans with personal reflection.”
Mr Ferris said ANZAC Day 2021 held special significance as it marked major milestones for all three branches of Australia’s armed services.
The RAAF celebrates 100 years of service, the Navy marks 110 years since it was granted the title Royal Australian Navy by His Majesty King George V and the Army recognises the two million Australians who have served, and continue to serve, under the Rising Sun badge for the past 120 years.