John Stubbs and Bob Fisher lay wreaths at the Maclean RSL Sub-branch Long Tan Day Memorial Service at the Maclean Cenotaph on Saturday.
John Stubbs and Bob Fisher lay wreaths at the Maclean RSL Sub-branch Long Tan Day Memorial Service at the Maclean Cenotaph on Saturday. Debrah Novak

Vietnam vets honoured

SEVENTY Valley residents were on hand as the sun set over the Maclean Cenotaph on Saturday evening.

They had turned up to mark Long Tan Day and to recognise the contribution of the Australian men and women who served in the Vietnam War.

The Reveille echoed across the town as the sun slipped over the horizon and wreaths were laid by veterans and family members.

Maclean Returned Services League Sub-branch president Kevin Reid spoke of the signi- ficance of the day.

"Events like this bring back the camaraderie that these men and women shared," Mr Reid said.

"This is not about glorifying the war, but that sense of camaraderie these people shared and remembering the diggers who did not return home.

"It (the service) was very good indeed, a great opportunity for everyone to remember the men and women who went to Vietnam, as well as the South Vietnamese who fought alongside them."

Long Tan Day commemorates one of the heaviest conflicts of the Vietnam War.

Fought in a rubber plantation on August 18, 1966, 108 Australian soldiers of D Company 6RAR overcame 2500 Viet Cong, resulting in loss of 18 Australian lives.

Saturday's ceremony also marked the 50th anniversary of Australia's entry into the Vietnam conflict.



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