GALLERY: Gunnedah ANZAC Day dawn service

Dozens of people turned out to pay their respects at a moving dawn service in Gunnedah on ANZAC Day.

Gunnedah RSL Sub-Branch Secretary and ex-serviceman Kerry Bee opened the proceedings, speaking about the legacy of the ANZAC legend.

“Just as we gather here this morning, thousands of people all around Australian will gather to commemorate the 99th anniversary of the landing at Gallipoli,” he said.

“Sadly the last remaining veterans from WW 1 have passed away, however their legacy lives on and is being upheld by new generations of servicemen and women.”

Salvation Army Minister Lieutenant David Grounds continued the tradition by leading the crowd in prayer and the poignant hymn, Amazing Grace. 

He spoke of the sacrifices of war and the fight for freedom.

“Today we stand in the dark and cold and remember an event from almost a century ago, when hundreds of young Australian men landed on a beach in Turkey and charged into machine gun fire to guarantee freedom and democracy,” he said. 

“ANZAC Day is a day of remembrance, when we think of the pain and suffering and sacrifice of the few or the many, not just at Gallipoli but in conflicts since then, and right up into our reality today.

“Most days of the year we go about our business, not thinking about the price of our liberty, the cost of our democracy, the sacrifice of men and women through the decades to keep us safe and fat and happy. And that’s good.

“We can’t spend every moment in solemn contemplation. But that’s the value of ANZAC Day – a day when we gather as a nation, as a community, as family, and remember the pain and price of our freedom.”

The large crowd turned to the west for the moving and familiar tune, The Last Post, played by buglar Sammy Porter, before the Ode For the Fallen was presented.

As dawn began to break, they reflected on those who paid the supreme sacrifice and paid tribute with a minute's silence.

The crowd then faced east for the moving piece, Reveille, before Gunnedah’s Mike Brady sang a moving song he wrote called “Young and Beautiful” – a tribute to WW 2 veteran Keith Jones, who he met in 2009.

WW 2 veteran John Dickie, left, with RSL Sub-Branch Secretary and ex-serviceman Kerry Bee.

WW 2 veteran John Dickie, left, with RSL Sub-Branch Secretary and ex-serviceman Kerry Bee.

State Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson, left, and Gunnedah Mayor Owen Hasler.

State Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson, left, and Gunnedah Mayor Owen Hasler.

Buglar Sammy Porter.

Buglar Sammy Porter.

Gunnedah RSL Sub-Branch President Kerry Bee opened the proceedings, before Salvation Army Minister Lieutenant David Grounds led the crowd in prayer and the poignant hymn, Amazing Grace. 

Lieutenant Grounds spoke of the sacrifices of war and the fight for freedom.

RSL Sub-Branch President Kerry Bee.

RSL Sub-Branch President Kerry Bee.

David Walker from the Plains Pipes and Drums plays the bagpipes.

David Walker from the Plains Pipes and Drums plays the bagpipes.

"Today we stand in the dark and cold and remember an event from almost a century ago, when hundreds of young Australian men landed on a beach in Turkey and charged into machine gun fire to guarantee freedom and democracy."

PTE Sam Woods, 12/16th Hunter River Lancers, was a member of the catafalque party at the dawn service.

PTE Sam Woods, 12/16th Hunter River Lancers, was a member of the catafalque party at the dawn service.

A large crowd gathered for this morning's dawn service.

A large crowd gathered for this morning's dawn service.

SALVATION Army officer, Lieutenant David Grounds addresses the crowd at the dawn service.

SALVATION Army officer, Lieutenant David Grounds addresses the crowd at the dawn service.

Gunnedah's Mike Brady sings the song "Young and Beautiful", which he wrote after meeting World War 2 war veteran, Keith Jones.

Gunnedah's Mike Brady sings the song "Young and Beautiful", which he wrote after meeting World War 2 war veteran, Keith Jones.

The crowd pays tribute in Gunnedah.

The crowd pays tribute in Gunnedah.

The crowd turned to the west for the familiar tune, The Last Post, played by Sammy Porter, before the Ode For the Fallen was presented.

As dawn began to break, the crowd and diggers reflected on those who paid the supreme sacrifice and paid tribute with a minute's silence.

The crowd then faced east for the moving piece, Reveille. 

This story GALLERY: Gunnedah ANZAC Day dawn service first appeared on Namoi Valley Independent.