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Culgoa Commemorative Board Unveiling

Remembering Those Who Fought In WW1

People connected to Culgoa, formerly known as the Kaneira district, are invited to a special Anzac Ceremony and acknowledgement of the installation of the WW1 Commemorative Board at the Culgoa Soldiers Memorial and Children’s Playground, Culgoa at 11am Sunday 24 April 2022.

Kerri Barry, project manager on the Culgoa Commemorative Board development, says she hoped the board would pay homage to those from the Culgoa community who gave service and sacrifice during the first World War.

Mr Mark Gepp MLC will attend on behalf of the Hon Shaun Leane, Minister for Veterans to officiate the event, remembering a war of vast tragedy with profound, devastating and enduring consequences for many nations, their peoples and their families, including in Australia.

“Funding was announced in 2014, however we commenced this project in 2018 and began tracing their stories, never imagining how much of an impact it would have on ourselves,” said Kerri, as she started to fight back tears.

Alongside the trauma and loss, the war also witnessed the service and sacrifice of thousands of Australian volunteer servicemen and servicewomen.

“Unfortunately, we live in a world that is far from peaceful and Australian servicemen and servicewomen will continue to face dangers.

“Learning from the experiences of Australians at war and their families over the last century or more, the participation of individuals and communities in unveiling this unifying Anzac legacy to current and future generations of Australians from all backgrounds remains vitally important and relevant today.”

The information on the board is telling. It records the identity, rank and features of each serviceperson right down to their build, colour of their hair, bodily scars – all tools for identification at the time, but now serve as a reminder that they were more than a casualty of war, they were someone’s mate, family, and part of the Culgoa community.

Kerri said it has been a community effort to bring this almost 8-year idea to fruition.

“We had no idea how much work this would involve when we started and it has been an emotional journey for us all,” added Kerri.

She acknowledged the passionate and continued support of Cathy Nash of the Veteran’s Branch, Mark Remnant Manager Community Services Buloke Shire, Culgoa residents Sharlene Harding and Marie Witte for their support of the project, historical research expertise of Joy and Alex Morrison of Wycheproof, Vietnam Veterans Ken Musty and Ian Guy and Ian’s wife, Lyn, Lex and Wendy Spry, as well as current and past staff of the Buloke Shire, Georgie Dixon, Anthony Judd, and Rose Harris.

“The Commemorative Board has a colourful and stunning visual impact, created by Kelly Wright of SignWise Solutions, Charlton, and I believe it encapsulates their courage, endurance, tenacity, resilience, selflessness and mateship - values which have defined our nation and the character of our people,” Kerri added.

Those attending are asked to send an email acknowledgement for catering purposes to: kerriannbarry03@gmail.com.