Marian Catholic College Kenthurst

On the 25 April we commemorate ANZAC Day, we give thanks and remember the sacrifices of those who have served and currently serve for our country's freedom.

Marian had many representatives from the College attend various ANZAC Day ceremonies across our local area to pay their respects in remembrance of our servicemen and women.

At the local Kenthurst service, college captains Aisling & Braith laid a wreath at the memorial, James Osterlund proudly played The Last Post and Reveille and the Marian vocal ensemble 'Pure Harmony' (Joan Bautista, Genevieve Brouillard & Georgia Domars) sung a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem. Many of our Year 12 student leaders also attended the service to pay their respects.

Marian Catholic College Kenthurst

Our 2021 ANZAC Ambassador Ellarose Halakas proudly represented Marian and presented a moving and powerful speech at the Hills Dawn Service, with the promise to ensure the ANZAC legacy will forever remain treasured in our hearts.

Her speech below:

A life I havent lived. Of challenges and devastation. Of great resilience and grit.

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is my pleasure to address the Battle of Long Tan, and its significance, in the Australian contribution, to the Vietnam War.

A true story of 108 young men, brave enough to become the most extraordinary soldiers. The attack occurred in the early hours of the 18th August 1966, beginning with the Viet Cong, using mortars and recoilless rifles, to attack and overtake the Australian Task Force base at Nui Dat. The Royal Australian Regiments were only recently deployed, to attain responsibility, for the Phuoc Tuy Province. They were directed to patrol the base which provided Australian and New Zealand soldiers, with security, vegetation, and a place to call home.

For a while at least.

As the Australian’s ammunition began running out, and the VietCong guerilla fighters maintained persistence, in retaining the base, the Australians were outnumbered, and casualties began mounting! The attack had substantial effects on the Anzacs, as a total of 17 men were killed, whilst 25 suffered devastating injuries.

The Battle of Long Tan built on the tradition of the mateship and strength, which the Anzacs displayed. Soldiers fought in the most dreadful conditions, exposed to monsoonal lightning, and prevailing winds. Soldiers fought beyond limitations, and were highly valued throughout the Vietnam War, for their strategies and resilience on the battlefield.

Their legacy will forever remain treasured in our hearts, as we recall their moments in battle, and their immense contribution, to the Vietnam War!

Theirs truly, ‘A life I haven’t lived. Of challenges and devastation. Of great resilience and grit.

Thank you.

Ellarose Halakas


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