The Centenary of Anzac 2014 to 2018 is Australia’s most important period of national commemoration. Marking 100 years since our involvement in the First World War, the Anzac Centenary is a time to honour the service and sacrifice of our original ANZACs, and the generations of Australian servicemen and women who have defended our values and freedoms, in wars, conflicts and peace operations throughout a Century of Service. 2018 will mark the 75th anniversary of the Thai Burma railway’s completion. You can find more information on Anzac Portal.
“25th April – ANZAC DAY 2018 – CHIANG MAI – DAWN SERVICE”
The Australian Consulate Chiang Mai and the House of Praise International Church wishes to thank everyone who attended the 6 am Anzac Day Dawn Memorial Service in Chiang Mai on the 25th April. It was very moving service and tribute to the fallen, former and serving members of the Australian and New Zealand Defence Forces and was followed by an Aussie BBQ breakfast and social gathering.
This year Pastor J Vickers was the host and master of ceremonies for this event. Addresses were made by the Honorary Consul of Australia in Chiangmai, Ron Elliott,( Aus HonCon ANZAC Day Speech ) and the Australian Army representative, WO2 Nick Wiles. Royal Australian Navy personnel from HMAS Anzac, Lieutenant. Grant Moran and his team were also in attendance to welcome guests and attend to Flag duties during the service. The laying of a large number of wreaths representing various organisations was a solemn tribute. Many wore their own or relatives medals in a sign of respect. There was a display area for those wishing to share memorial pictures or Anzac stories.
A good number of guests attended and around 150 were early birds and got there for the 6 am start. This year the Consulate invited Thai Government officials to join the service as our guests – The Governor Chiang Mai Province represented by the Vice Governor; Royal Thai Police Region 5 represented by the Commander Chang Puek Police Station and Royal Thai Armed Forces represented by the 33rd Military Circle, Deputy Chief Kawilia Barracks. This year we also had the kind service of a Royal Thai Army bugler to play the “last post” and “reveille” which added a solemn touch to the service. Following the service the Aussie BBQ breakfast of sausage & onion sandwich with some damper, tim tams and refreshments made for a great social gathering.
The Australian Consulate Chiang Mai wishes to thank the Christian Outreach Centre/House of Praise International Church for hosting this event – something like 14 years now. Particular thanks goes to Pastor Vickers, Dr Jane Edwards and the team for facilitating the dawn service.
The Anzac Centenary is the symbol that recognises, identifies and commemorates one hundred years of Anzac. This Centenary marks not only one hundred years since the First World War, but also a century of service of men and women who have worn our nation’s uniform.
There was a book on display at the remembrance table yesterday – The Missing Years, A POW’s Story from Changi to Hellfire Pass – by Australian author – Stu Lloyd – who lives in Chiang Mai. It is a gripping story of ex-planter Captain Hugh (‘Pilk’) Pilkington’s disastrous Malaya campaign in which he was shot by a Japanese sniper, survived the Alexandra Hospital Massacre, became a POW while still hospitalised, spent time in Changi, then – with only one good arm – was packed off to work on the Thai-Burma death railway at the dreaded Hellfire Pass. But he lived to tell the tail, and what a tale. The book is available through Amazon.com (search for Stu Lloyd).
More information is available on Anzac Day at this website on Anzac Centenary.