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ANZAC Day at Farina April 25th 2015

The climb to the top of the hill to the War Memorial Precinct overlooking the camping ground at Farina on a dark & chilly morning was well worthwhile for approximately 170 people who attended the Dawn service.

Tom Harding introduced Major Peter Thomas OAM who led a very moving service. Peter is a leader in Victoria for Legacy & RSL matters.

The Dawn service started with the Stand To for those assembled followed by the hymn Amazing Grace. Tom Harding delivered the ANZAC Requiem & Sir William Slim’s thought for the day.

Major Peter Thomas gave the Commemorative address followed by the moving hymn Abide with Me.

Wreaths were laid by Anne & Kevin Dawes on behalf of local Member of Parliament, Dan van Holst Pellekaan, Jason Dawes and fiancée Emily on behalf of the Farina Restoration Group. Grant McCracken, a member of the Vietnam Veterans Association, laid a wreath on their behalf. People attending were also asked to come forward and they did so at this time.

The beautiful & meaningful poem “In Flanders Fields” was read by Anne Dawes. Bob Brownlee read “The Ode” with all assembled responding with “We will remember them”

The last post was played by bugler Peter Arbery. A minutes silence was then observed.

Our National Anthem was sung.

The service was then concluded with Stand Down.

The service at dawn was followed by a breakfast package of bacon and egg roll, ANZAC biscuits and rum and coffee, for those who wished to partake, for the sum of $15. Joan and Marie collected the money with Treasurer Bob keeping a close eye. We lost count of numbers at 140 and extra supplies were needed to feed all. Martin McLennan with his team Janine, Margaret, Jo & Helen in the Caravan Café did a wonderful job to feed the people in the long queue. All agreed –well worth waiting for.

A Recognition Service was held at 9.30am to honor eight Farina soldiers, five from WW 1 and three from WW2, who had lost their lives fighting for our country. These men were from the Farina area. Vietnam Vets and some members of the families of these soldiers presented, to those assembled, the plaques where the soldier’s information was recorded. These plaques are to be erected at the Farina War Memorial Precinct.

A young woman, Mikala Green, who attends a Special School turned 14 years old on ANZAC day and made a beautiful wreath of native flora from around the Farina campground and surrounding area. This wreath was presented as a sign of respect for her Grandfather & Great Grandfather who had served in the forces.

Farina had an article in the South Australian Sunday Mail, April 26th 2015 with a photo (taken by Marie) of three sisters, Olive, Ursula & Marj who were daughters of William Clements Parsons, a Farina resident who received a Military Medal for Gallantry.

This newspaper report can be seen on our website

A special thanks for the preparation that went into making this 100 year Commemorative ANZAC service, special breakfast & the Recognition service at Farina a wonderful success.

Credit to Peter Thomas for his leadership. A special thank you to our team: Maurie, Kaniva Bob, Steve & Trish, Bob & Colynette, Tom and Joan, Margaret and Ken, John (Woody) and Joke, Helen and Rob, Marie and Chas, Martin and Jo, Janine, Derek, Anne, Kevin and family.

Many comments were made on the day. One young woman said she had been to many ANZAC services and that the Farina service was the most meaningful one she had been to.

Jock, one of the Vietnam Vets, said that he had attended many ANZAC services and he also thought that the Farina ANZAC service was the most meaningful service that he had attended.

Above text and images (below) supplied by Marie Harding.

From Tom Harding, our Convenor:

It won’t be long before our Week 1 volunteers will be on the road to Farina.

A couple of reminders for volunteers – don’t forget your fly nets and repellent. There were not many flies at Farina over ANZAC weekend but that does not mean that they won’t be there when volunteers are working!

Carry 10 litres of drinking water.
Bring your sturdy walking or working shoes and/or boots.
Bring a folding stool for “sit down” jobs.
Also, bring good gardening gloves.
Please make sure you bring a name tag with your Christian name on it.
If you have an unused 9kg gas cylinder to spare, please bring it along as we will need spares. Fill it up and we will refund you for the gas.
Resupply of all goods is from Leigh Creek. We have a vehicle there at least every second day so don’t overstock on perishables.

Contact Numbers over the time we are at Farina this year

After the 18th May any contact with leaders will be via their mobile message bank.
Weeks 1 and 2 : Tom 0418 300 597
Weeks 3 and 4: Barry 0425 253 163
Weeks 5 and 6: Bob 0409 433 731
Weeks 7 and 8 Steve 0415 236 490

If routine then contact Farina Station by email
If urgent, telephone the station homestead 08 86757790

Here’s to Farina 2015! … Tom

Top row: Olive Bischoff, Ursula Ross, Marj Lamey, daughters of William Clements Parsons. Recognition plaque being presented and Makala presenting her native floral wreath to Tom Harding.

Bottom row: Rob Brownlee (Treasurer) in a lighter moment, and Martin MacLennan with his catering team – wife Jo, Margaret, Helen and Janine. (not necessarily in that order!)