Solemn dawn Anzac Day services have returned to towns and villages across northern Victoria and the southern Riverina, after two years of COVID-19 interruptions.
In the grey light of pre-dawn, Violet Town RSL sub-branch president James Howden recalled the sacrifice of the district’s citizens in wars and conflicts.
John Joseph Clarke, a teacher who served with the Field Ambulance and died of his wounds on a hospital ship; farmer Arthur Clery from Balmattum; and the Wall family who lost three of their sons — Albert, John and Roger.
Mr Howden urged everyone to remember not only the fallen but those who stood by and supported those returning from conflicts.
“Those who dealt with the injuries, lived without brothers, sisters, fathers, sons and daughters.”
Mr Howden, who served for 20 years with the Signals Corp, in Australia and overseas, reminded the crowd of the terrible toll in lives that wars had claimed, starting with the Boer War and through to Afghanistan.
About 70 people gathered in family groups and some standing alone on the lawns of the Violet Town Memorial Hall.
A cenotaph guard was mounted by soldiers from the Puckapunyal School of Armour.