It was my privilege and honour to be asked by the Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Committee (VARC) to assume the serious duties of Master of Ceremonies for the 2021 Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Service.
As an ex-serviceman (1975 and 1984) and son of a World War II Aboriginal infantryman who served in the bloody campaigns in North Africa and the Pacific, it was an emotional experience and one that I shall never forget.
The commemoration honours the service of Aboriginal men and women, past and present.
Aboriginal people have served in every conflict and peacekeeping mission involving Australia for more than a century.
This is despite the fact that Aboriginal people were not allowed to enlist until the Second World War and for many years their service was not recognised.
In 2006, the late Aunty Dorothy ‘Dot’ Peters (1930-2019) sought to change this, and in 2007 the first Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Service took place. Since then, it has been held every year to honour the service and sacrifice of all Aboriginal servicemen and women.
Lest We Forget!