It was an Anzac Day like no other. The coronavirus pandemic meant 2020 would be honoured without the traditional dawn services, ceremonies and street marches. But Australians still turned out in force – mainly in their driveways – with other social-distancing events held on beaches, at memorials and in various care facilities all over the country.
Residents and staff in Fresh Hope Care residential aged care facilities throughout NSW found different ways to help residents honour service men and women who have fought and died for our country.
At Ashwood Residential Care Service in Pendle Hill, a small group of residents participated in a service on Friday 24 April. The service was led by chaplain Judy Francis and included hymns, The Ode and Last Post, and a reflection on the importance of remembrance and the God who laid down his own life. A memorial wreath was also laid, and Judy said many residents were moved. Resident Ron Talbot, 96, spoke of the soldiers who fought for “God, king, country and the British Empire”. Ron was a serviceman in the signal unit and served in New Guinea in 1943 and Borneo in 1945.
Residents of the Green Hills Retirement Village in Maitland were invited to partake in an Anzac service last Saturday from their balconies or on the grassed area in the centre of the complex (pictured below, left). The village’s flag was lowered to half mast, and Salvation Army member David Walz played the Last Post (pictured below, right).
At Coffs Haven Residential Care Service in Coffs Harbour, staff put together a booklet with activities, stories, Bible readings and poetry for residents’ personal reflection.
At Clelland Lodge Residential Care Service in Nowra, chaplain Zelpha Bevan said each resident received an Anzac Day pack to help them mark the day.
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