81st Anniversary of the Bombing of Darwin
Commemoration Service – Shrine of Remembrance Melbourne
Sunday 19th February 2023 marked the 81st Anniversary of the Bombing of Darwin. In 2023, to enable schools to attend the commemoration, the service was held on Monday 20th February.
It was with the support of the Veterans Council of Victoria; the Melbourne Branch of the Darwin Defenders 1942-45 was able to hold the service on the forecourt of the Shrine of Remembrance.
The service honours those who served and those who died during the attacks on Darwin during 1942 - 1945. It is an opportunity for veterans, their families, dignitaries, and school students to participate in a respectful service that aims to remind us of the cost of preserving peace and democracy in Australia. This part of our history is often overlooked, but the service at the Shrine provides us with an opportunity to reflect upon the events that were tragically significant in Australia’s History.
On a beautiful Melbourne morning, Shrine Governor, Colonel John Coulson OAM, RFD ED (Retired) welcomed many dignitaries, families of veterans, school students & teachers to the Shrine on the auspicious occasion on the 81st Anniversary of the Bombing of Darwin.
Read more in the full report.
Vale Alan Richard Day KJSJ, KAIM
It is with sadness that we share the news of Alan Day’s passing on the 25th July 2022.
Alan had reached his 100 years in February this year and he was absolutely thrilled with all the official recognition – especially the card from the Queen!
In early June, Robyn, Michele and I (from the Darwin Defenders 1942-45 Melbourne group) were able to visit him at Vasey RSL Care at Frankston South for a special Air Force Association Centenary presentation.
The Darwin Defenders 1942-45 Melbourne will miss Alan as President and great supporter.
Alan had called Mornington home and for many years he tirelessly assisted in fundraising for Legacy, War Widows Guild and the Weary Dunlop Foundation. He moved to Vasey RSL Care at Frankston South in 2021.
It is always a time of sadness to attend a funeral – a sad time for family and friends farewelling someone they loved, someone who had impacted their lives, someone who had a made a difference in the community … and in the case of Alan Day … someone who had lived 100 years serving many of those years serving his country with pride.
However, a long life of 100 years – is a life filled with many happy memories for families, many friends, neighbours, and colleagues.
At Alan’s funeral service at Bunurong Memorial Park, the Celebrant – Mr Alan Stubbs gave a beautiful eulogy …
Alan could best be described as a very giving man who wanted nothing in return for his kindness, hard work and the care he showed to his family, his country and the communities in which he lived.
Alan possessed a ‘happy-go-lucky’ personality and was quite the jokester with wonderful people skills.
He never took offence and simply wanted those with whom he interacted to be happy in his presence.
A clever man, Alan possessed the innate ability to communicate happily and easily with people from all walks of life and cultures.
Clearly, Alan left this world a better place.
To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson: “To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived — that is to have succeeded.”
As a society and as a community, we are the poorer when people such as Alan Richard Day leave our midst.
We shall miss Alan at our meetings and even more so on the 19th February each year as we commemorate the Bombing of Darwin in 1942.
Lest we forget.