A moving ceremony at Marburg
IT SEEMED the whole of Marburg - plus plenty from surrounding areas - turned out for the street parade and ceremony for the Gallipoli landing centenary.
Horsemen led the parade down Queen St followed by jeeps, Vietnam Vets, current and ex-servicemen and students from Marburg State School. The parade ended in front of the Marburg Community Centre under the recently-restored memorial flag pole.
Anzac Day was without the flag pole last year after it was knocked down in a storm.
The barest breeze played with the flag, flying at half-mast, and tried to coax it into life.
People said there were twice as many people watching the ceremony this year than last year.
As popular Marburg folk singer Les Birnie sang And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda, you couldn't help thinking it was a scene being played out in thousands of towns like Marburg all over Australia - the towns where millions of men left and many returned to different lives.
In the perfectly cool, sunny April morning, magpies and crows competed with the speakers and singers.
The Song of Australia was haunting and emotional and this year the New Zealand national anthem was sung for the first time at Marburg.
People connected with names on the honour board were called forward to lay poppies in front of it and dignitaries placed wreaths.
Then Mylyn Dat sang the Australian national anthem and most people softly joined in.
Wendye Gratton said it was a privilege to organise the ceremony because she was proud to be Australian.
Fittingly, then, perhaps, the ceremony ended with a performance of I Am Australian before everyone turned across the road for morning tea at the Marburg Hotel.