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Anzac Day 2013 Why it's special to me Featured

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Anzac day is always a special day for me and my family. When I was a child I was taken to many dawn services and marches and I learnt to respect those diggers who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

First of all I am not a war monger, in fact I detest war.However, I also acknowledge that sometimes war is unfortunately inevitable. Those that choose to go to fight for our country are real heroes. Imagine the anguish of deciding to “join up” knowing that you may not return. Knowing very well that you will see things that will stay with you forever and that this country means so much to you that you will actually fight for it.

I am very proud of my family members who enlisted, especially my Grandfather George Fredrick Bull. Sadly he passed away long before I arrived. I would have loved to have known him, to hear his stories to make a personal connection and be able to pass this information onto my kids.

George fought in the 15th Battalion at Gallipoli and by miracle managed to survive despite performing one of the harder roles in the army, being a sniper.

My dad (a national serviceman) always told me about how my granddad survived Gallipoli. He was a sniper positioned on one of the now famous Gallipoli ridges. He was a small distance from the foe, a Turkish sniper and here is the amazing part, they formed a bond, a respect that saved them both. They had a gentleman’s agreement not to shoot each other and allowed each other to go for breaks, meals, sleep etc. They both obviously saw the senselessness in shooting each other. Everyone else was fair game. Seems a little unreal to write that phrase but that was the reality of war.

George then travelled to France and fought on the Western Front at Pozieres. I never heard much about his time here, other than the fact that he was gassed on several occasions. 12 years ago, I lived out a dream and visited this battle field and finally made a long craved for connection with my granddad. Pozieres speaks for itself, a small hill in the middle of a large field. Our troops had to run up the hill and take the German machine gun fortress. Of course this was a ridiculous task but somehow our troops prevailed. When you visit this place it instantly tells thousands of stories about danger, heroism and, sadly, death.

George managed to survive the war despite copping a load of shrapnel in his shoulder. Unfortunately his life was ultimately cut short by this wound and he died in 1954 aged 66.

Like so many other families we have many reasons to remember all those who have served our country this and every Anzac Day.

Lest we forget

Last modified on Tuesday, 23 April 2013 19:53

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