The Villers–Bretonneux Military Cemetery with the Australian National War Memorial beyond

The Villers–Bretonneux Military Cemetery with the Australian National War Memorial beyond

Today has been a long anticipated day, it’s 11/11/11.

The eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month. What does this mean to you?

Remembrance Day, I remember my primary school days when at this time, the headmaster Mr James would over the class room intercom, ask that everyone would be silent. Proudly wearing a poppy pinned to my chest pocket, we would remember those who had fallen. This moment marked the anniversary of the end of World War One, a terrible war where more than 60 000 Aussie troops lost their lives.

The recent tragedies of Aussie diggers lost in Afghanistan can only focus us on the importance of remembering the fallen.

Inspecting memorial to AIF at ‘Moo Cow Farm’ (Mouquet Farm), Pozières, France

Inspecting memorial to AIF at ‘Moo Cow Farm’ (Mouquet Farm), Pozières, France

Battlefield tours can be very humbling, chilling and tranquil all at the same time. I have been fortunate to visit many memorials to Aussie troops in Europe including the Somme. To think that these tranquil meadows were once home to the horrors of war disguised as daily life is difficult to comprehend.

Poppy Field, France by John Reyment

Poppy Field, France by John Reyment

Today at 11am, please pause and remember. We live in a free democratic country that many have given their lives to protect.

Is saying “Thank You” enough?

Lest we forget.