Young veterans handed the Anzac Day legacy
IN A sign that the ANZAC legacy is truly being passed on to a new generation, veterans from conflicts after 1975 were given the honour of leading many marches this year including at Coffs Harbour.
It is hoped the change will encourage more young veterans to take part in commemorations as their representation had traditionally been lower than Diggers who served in less recent conflicts.
Ahead of next year's 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landings, RSL Sub Branches across the nation are working to welcome more of the younger generation of diggers to the fold.
Allowing service personnel from Afghanistan, Iraq, East Timor and the Soloman Islands to take the lead for the first time acknowledges the 40 casualties of the Afghanistan conflict as well as another 20 in other operations since the end of the Vietnam war.
In a gift to the younger generations who are keen to remember their parents' military service post 1975, the Coffs Harbour RSL Sub-branch is planning a special presentation in 2015 where the sons and daughters of servicemen and women will be presented with specially minted medallions.
"These medallions recognise the sacrifices made by the sons and daughters of contemporary servicemen and women and those who have served their country in war," Coffs Harbour RSL sub-branch president Bob Payne said.
"We are encouraging everyone who is eligible for the special medallion to contact the RSL sub-branch and provide their parent's name, number and rank so we can plan a special medallion presentation night in the lead-up to the centenary Anzac Day commemorations next year."
To apply for the medallion visit the RSL Sub-branch in Coffs Ce.x on Mondays between 10am and noon, Thursdays between 1-4pm or Fridays between 10am and noon or phone the sub-branch on 6691 9233.