Highlights from Anzac Day across the Clarence Valley
Grafton Memorial Service
THE FUTURE of the Anzac services is in good hands judging from the efforts of the four speeches from school children delivered at the 2016 service in Grafton.
Grafton High School student Ryan Moore, Hope Endean, from Grafton Public School, Maddison Osborne from Westlawn Public School and McCauley Catholic College student Lucy Bindon delivered comemmoration addresses at the 101st Anzac Day in Grafton's Memorial Park yesterday.
- VIDEO: McAuley Catholic College Lucy Bindon recounts fate of 14 Clarence Valley soldiers in Battle of Fromelles
There are no World War One diggers and not many World War Two veterans to tell their stories now, but young people are filling the breach.
Yamba Memorial Service
"AUSTRALIA is not a lucky country, but it is a blessed country."
The words of Reverend Allen were heard by hundreds across the Main Beach cenotaph at Yamba's ANZAC memorial service this morning.
"It seems to me luck is a fluke, it happens by chance; luck has nothing to do with skill of passion or desire or sacrifice," he said.
"This morning as we march, remember and commemorate, I want to say to you that luck has nothing to do with this great country we live in."
As he spoke a number of servicemen, current, ex and returned, stood proudly behind him.
Check out the photos from today's Anzac Day Memorial Service in Yamba:
Super hornet puts on display for Iluka service
THE roar of the The Royal Australian Air Force's super hornet could be heard across the Lower Clarence yesterday as former Iluka boy Glenn Braz gave his community an Anzac Day display to remember.
As group captain of the F/A-18F Super Hornet fleet based in Brisbane, Air Commodore Braz and his pilots conducted about 40 flyovers at Anzac Day services in NSW and Queensland.
In a significant nod to his home-town, the pilot made sure Iluka wasn't missed.
Iluka RSL sub-branch's Brian Thomas said the special flyover was a last-minute, but very welcome, addition to the service, which saw close to 400 people attend.
"It was a great attendance for a small town like Iluka; the dawn service had well over 200 people and 11am service close to 400," he said.
"All over they seem to be getting bigger and bigger every year. There was also a dawn service at Chatsworth Island for the first time in many years."
Maclean Memorial Service
AS THE choir sang the words of ANZAC hymn Shelter at Maclean's cenotaph, an amused smile escaped some of their faces.
The opening lyrics, 'I'm drowning in the sunshine as it pours down from the skies', seemed slightly ironic as the heavens opened up and drenched those without umbrellas.
Thankfully the downpour was short-lived, and the sun did in fact shine down on those who placed a wreath at the Maclean cenotaph during the annual service.
Maclean sub-branch president Kevin Jones OAM said the crowd was huge compared to previous years, bolstered by those attending the Smith family reunion.
"We thought we had a big one for the 100th year last year,," he said.
"Well this is 101 and it's definitely bigger."
For returned serviceman and Maclean John Stubbs, each ANZAC Day service has more meaning than the last. This year especially, as it marks 50 years since the battle of Long Tan.
"We were sitting and watching a show with Col Joye and Little Pattie... Lucky Grills was the comedian... at Nui Dat, and the next minute over came some of the mortars. The show was abandoned and everybody had to run like hell. It was then when that we knew something was on."
Check out the photos from today's Anzac Day Memorial Service in Maclean:
History of Anzac Day in the Clarence Valley
The following gallery of historic Anzac Day marches is courtesy of the Clarence Valley Historical Society at Schaeffer House Museum in Grafton.
South Grafton Memorial Service
THE CROWD at the South Grafton Anzac Day Service learnt about a little-known piece of Grafton World War One history courtesy of local historian and poet Darin Clark.
Mr Clark told the little known tale of the North Coast Boomerangs Coo-ee March, which left Grafton on January 18, 1916.
He also read out a poem he had written about the exploits of the young men from the region and how their heroics fitted into Australian military history.
His research revealed the recruiting march which left South Grafton Railway Station with 27 men grew to nearly 10 times that number by the time it wound up in Maitland a month later.
Tullymorgan Dawn Service
THE overcast skies and drizzling rain did not deter the 190 people that attended the Tullymorgan School Dawn Service on Anzac Day.
Ian Gardam once again conducted the program which began with the Catafalque Party (comprising Glen, Ray, Stan and Alec Cormick) marching across the grounds, to then stand with their heads bowed and their arms (weapon) reversed, facing outward as a symbolic form of respect for those who have fallen.
The eerie morning horizon was broken by the image of the Lone Horseman (Norm Cormick) moving through the crowds.
Following the service, a gunfire breakfast was served to those willing to endure the inclement weather.
65th Anniversary of Kapyong Day
THE Korean War is sometimes known as the forgotten war, but it was at the forefront of everyone's mind at the Ramornie service yesterday, which commemorated the 65th anniversary of one of the fiercest battles of the conflict, the Battle of Kapyong.
Korean War veteran John Fitzpatrick said he was very pleased to have a service dedicated to Kopyang Day and the Korean War.
"It's not mentioned very often, but the battle was very important to the war, everyone there was a hero," he said.
>> FULL STORY: Korean War not forgotten at Ramornie service AT 96 years of age, Henry "Corky" Caldwell was the oldest veteran to attend the Wooli Dawn Service this morning.
Wooli's oldest veteran
After serving in the Middle East from 1941-1943 during World War II, Mr Caldwell came home to the Clarence Valley.
Yamba dawn service
JESSICA Gunning was among those who saw the sun rise over Yamba Main Beach this morning.
The former Yamba girl serves with the Royal Australian Navy on board HMAS Sirius and got to attend the dawn service with her two grandfathers who served in Vietnam.
Check out the video below. Stay tuned for the story and more throughout the day.
South Grafton dawn service gets Anzac Day underway
ITS power possesses us to wake even before the dawning of the sun.
We rise, dress and put on our game face.
What other day of the year could possibly motivate us all to do this? It's not even a work day.
Yet, together we stand for this one day each year.
One hundred years since the Battle of the Somme, bugler Garrett Salter welcomed another Anzac Day as citizens paid their respects at the South Grafton pre-dawn service.
And so Anzac Day began for 2016...
Dawn services were also held at Grafton, Iluka, Harwood, Yamba, Tullymorgan, Lawrence and Maclean.