City Observer Newsletter 25 April 2019 25, April 2019
ANZAC Day Service
On Wednesday, the School held its ANZAC Day Assembly, and we were honoured to have Mr Frank Wratten attend representing Caloundra Returned Services League. We also will attend the Caloundra March on Thursday commencing at 8.30am from the Stockland carpark, Caloundra. It is a significant event for Caloundra, and for our children and parents who attend together as part of our community. We welcome Mrs Stephanie Evans to commence the role of Wellbeing Co-ordinator and she addressed our Assembly commenting about support and mateship, etc., related to the ANZAC tradition for Australians. She is a vibrant speaker, keen to explain the relevance of ANZAC Day for our young children, and what it helps them to learn about people. Following the ANZAC Assembly, I also let our Senior School students know that our Head of Senior School, Ms Stuart, is concluding her wonderful career at the School, on 20 May. We hope we can adequately celebrate her achievements with her during the next four weeks as a community thinking very fondly of her support for all the children.
For my part, ANZAC Day commemorations have held different thoughts for me every year. That may have come from the different services I have attended; the people I have been with; or the specific family experiences we have had. But through it all, the message of the need to support each other, particularly during hardship, is the most poignant, and not to forget the widespread and longlasting ramifications of conflict, both personally and nationally. The misuse of power may lie at the heart of many conflicts, whether that is locally, or internationally, leading to negativity and to destruction if it is at a larger scale. But the courage to stand up for what is right must be cherished, and our serving people’s courage and commitment must be at the forefront of our commemorations and thoughts. Their individual sacrifices are important. My wife and I learnt during our visit to the city of her birth, Newcastle, that her grandfather whom she knew served in Paschendale in WWl and had a familial reputation when he returned to his home in Newcastle, of being ‘the most unambitious man’. My wife has held that description of her father’s father throughout her life. During her visit to Newcastle last week, her 86 year old aunt told her that she knew he had been standing next to his close cousin in a Paschendale trench, when his cousin was decapitated by a shell blast. Years later, after my wife’s father returned home to Australia, he would not allow his son to go to WWll. How would we deal with such terrible experiences? Being unambitious can now be seen as being about what really matters – caring for family, community, and helping people. It offers us some comfort that our twentieth century enemies in war, such as Turkey, Japan, and Vietnam, are all strong trading partners and now close friends with Australia, in many ways.
Dr Dirk Wellham – Principal
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