|Pool of Reflection and the Eternal Flame. Within the Hall of Memory (at the end) lies the tomb of the Unkown Soldier - the soldier died in France in the First World War and brought home on the 11th of November 1993|
No Art Wednesday today as it is ANZAC Day. Last week my son and I visited the National War Memorial and I would like to share some of the photos I took whilst there. I'm not one for celebrating war however I find the War Memorial so tastefully done, both as a place of remembrances, but a reminder of the horrors of war, something each new generation needs to be reminded of. War is never good.
|Simpson and his donkey|
John Simpson Kirkpatrick was born in Britain but later moved to Australia. In August 1914 he enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force, serving at Gallipoli the following year as Private John Simpson in the 3rd Field Ambulance, Australian Army Medical Corps. He served from the time of the landing at Gallipoli on 25 April until he was killed in action on 19 May.
Simpson became famous for his work as a stretcher-bearer. Using one of the donkeys brought in for carrying water, he transported wounded men day and night from the fighting in Monash Valley to the beach on ANZAC Cove. He did so, according to Charles Bean, through "deadly sniping down the valley and the most furious shrapnel fire". He was killed by machine-gun fire while carrying two wounded men and was buried on the beach at Hell Spit.
|My son looking at the Eternal Flame.|
|My son standing near the "Roll of Honour" looking down to the Pool of Relfection.|
|Looking up towards to Roll of Honour - World War I|
|World War I hounour list|
For Australia, as for many nations, the First World War remains the most costly conflict in terms of deaths and casualties. From a population of fewer than five million, 416,809 men enlisted, of which over 60,000 were killed and 156,000 wounded, gassed, or taken prisoner. A total of 15 million died and 20 million were injured. What a waste of human life. However we didn't learn anything from this, as a few decades later over 60 million people were killed, which was over 2.5% of the world population.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
By John McCrae, 1915