On Wednesday 11 November at 11 am, the School paused to observe Remembrance Day.
The Senior School gathered before the Old Boys’ Memorial on The Flat, which commemorates the 119 Old Boys and staff who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation.
This was an opportunity to share with the boys the significance of this moment in history. At 11 am on 11 November 1918, after more than four years of warfare, the guns of the western front fell silent. The German forces accepted the Allied terms of unconditional surrender and the armistice (suspension of fighting) was signed in a railway carriage in a forest in France.
On the first anniversary of the armistice, 11 November 1919, the observance of two minutes' silence was recognised as a feature for Armistice Day commemorations. In the ensuing years, Remembrance Day ceremonies became the focus of national attention. In 1997, the Governor General Sir William Deane issued a proclamation formally declaring 11 November to be Remembrance Day and urged all Australians to observe one minute's silence at 11 am each year to remember those who died or suffered in all wars and conflicts.
This moment of commemoration enabled us to remind the boys and staff that our freedom must never be taken for granted. It is essential they understand, along with all Australians, that our freedom to live, worship, learn, speak, and pursue our lives in liberty, has been defended by courageous men and women over generations.
It is important that our young people know and are constantly reminded of the sacrifice made by those before them. We should remain vigilant in upholding our democracy and Australian way of life and remain ever grateful for the dedication of today’s servicemen and women.
Lest we forget.