Lighting up the dawn in Delegate, Bombala and the district | PHOTOS

The COVID-19 pandemic has bought social distancing regulations that have prevented Australians from gathering at war memorials around the country to commemorate our fallen warriors.

The coronavirus lockdown led to this years Light Up the Dawn initiative that encouraged people to stand at the end of the driveways or on their verandahs at 6am, recite the Ode, observe a minutes silence and sound the Last Post.

Delegate RSL Sub-branch president Phil Pope said although Delegate could not hold services in town this year, 'the town did us proud'.

"From my driveway I could hear the sound of others stirring at 6am to pay their respects to the fallen.

"Slightly after 6am, Greg and Kate Moore played the last post, reveille and We'll Meet Again by Dame Vera Lynn and Katherine Jenkins over a PA on their front verandah. As they live on a hill in the middle of Delegate, you could hear it all over the village.

"I was very pleased to see how many people had individually come out and laid wreaths at different times throughout the day so they did not break the social isolation orders.

"The town have a paid their respects with many houses flying the National Flag and with decorated front windows," he said.

Mr Pope said it was the most unusual ANZAC Day in 100 years.

"The significance of these commemorations should not be lost on all Australians. We pride ourselves on being members of the 'lucky country' where men and woman are secure to live life full of freedoms denied to many.

"The men and women we remember at these war memorials have paid the ultimate sacrifice in securing and maintaining freedom for people around the globe.

"For those warriors that are still with us, this is a difficult ANZAC Day. Many of the little rituals that help them keep their demons at bay have been denied them.

"They cannot gather with mates for the companionship and solace that being with others of shared experience gives them.

"They are unable to gather together in fellowship to mourn absent friends. They cannot even just sit quietly in a pub secure in the knowledge that most others in that pub, on that day, are veterans that will have their back if all hell breaks loose,' Mr Pope said.

As the RSL have been unable to frundraise for ANZAC Day this year they would appreciate any donations which can be made on the RSL Defence Care WBI page at http://www.defencecare.org.au/donate1

"I am quite sure that the money donated will be well spent towards assisting some of our living warriors with the mental health issues that will be exacerbated by the social isolation currently in place," Mr Pope said.

This story Difficult day for ANZAC warriors | PHOTOS first appeared on Bombala Times.

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