Queenslanders pay their respects to Anzacs

They may have served more than 70 years ago, but the memories remain all too real for many servicemen and women.


It was those memories that inspired tens of thousands of Queenslanders, young and old, to participate in Brisbane’s 100th consecutive Anzac Day commemorations.

At 94, Grahame Bernard Tweedale was told he might not be able to walk in the Brisbane parade.

But that didn’t wash with the World War II veteran, refusing to sit in his wheelchair and instead walking the entire way.

“It is about pride of unit,” he said, fighting back tears remembering those he served with in the Middle East, Sri Lanka and Borneo.

Thousands, many lined three deep along Adelaide Street, honoured them all – cheering, applauding and offering “thank you” in spite of showers and wind.

Big crowds also flocked to dawn services across the state to pay their respects to Australia’s current, former and fallen servicemen and women.

Up to 30,000 people attended the Currumbin Elephant Rock service at the Gold Coast, while almost as many were at the Shrine of Remembrance in Brisbane.

In the outback town of Birdsville on the Queensland-Northern Territory border, stock horses joined in the annual commemorations.

Cooparoo’s Janet McDonald wore a picture of her grandfather, a WWI veteran who survived the Battle of the Somme, to the Brisbane dawn service.

“We don’t often get something profound in our lives – maybe once or twice when the Lions win at the Gabba,” she said, smiling.

RSL Queensland president Stewart Cameron urged people to remember everyone affected by war.

“We’ve got to take the time to remember the sacrifice but also we’ve got to remember the living,” he said.

“For those who have suffered and lost loved ones, their pain is all day, every day.”

Mr Cameron urged the future generation of Australians to carry on the spirit of Anzac Day.

“I’m really pleased mums and dads are bringing their children along,” he said.

“I’m convinced young people absolutely do get it.”

Paul Dack and wife Karen brought their two young daughters in to watch the Brisbane parade and learn the history.

“Before we go rushing into war again, these guys need to know it was not fun and games,” he said.

It was a sentiment echoed by many others.