Midday march a treat for South Grafton
DAWN was a few hours gone, but the momentum of that misty start to Anzac Day in South Grafton carried through until midday as the streets around the CBD were lined with by the patriotic and proud.
They were there to wave their heroes and family representatives past as they marched and rode their way down Skinner Street to the riverside cenotaph for a encore acknowledgment of the fallen.
Despite a particularly brutal autumn sun testing patience and fortitude, more than a thousand people gathered, school children to the remaining handful of soldiers that served in the Second War World, to pay their respects to those who had those qualities in spades.
Wreaths were laid representing all facets of the community while moving speeches and accounts, music and poetry encapsulated a heart-felt thanks to those who served and paid the ultimate price under the veil of tragedy that hangs on this day of reflection.
Vice president of the South Grafton Sub-Branch of the Returned Services League Alan Ryall, said the numbers were up on this centenary year of Anzac Day.
"We had well over 2000 at the dawn service and in the vicinity of 5000 at the midday march and service."
Mr Ryall said it left him with a good feeling as the future of the Anzac Day commemorations service was "in good hands".
"You can see that with the amount of kids here today that they are going to carrying it on for some years to come."
The Very Rev. Donald Kirk who was at both South Grafton services said it was hard to comprehend the emotion of a day like this.
"It was wonderful to see. The entire community was represented. There was a sense of national pride and a sense of who we are as Australians, living free and living with respect and understanding of one another."