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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 5 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 1734 ..


record—Christopher Latham actually asked me to put this on record, and I think it is the case—appreciation of the contribution that the ACT government will be making to the Canberra performance in October this year. The only thing I can do is encourage members of this place and members of the public to support The Diggers' Requiem when they have an opportunity to do so later this year.

Anzac Day

MR RAMSAY (Ginninderra—Attorney-General, Minister for Regulatory Services, Minister for the Arts and Community Events and Minister for Veterans and Seniors) (5.56): I rise this evening to look back on the ACT's Anzac Day commemorations last month. It is my great privilege as the Minister for Veterans and Seniors to represent the ACT government at a number of Anzac events, and I pay tribute this evening to all the participants and the organisers, as well as, of course, the service and sacrifice of those whose efforts were commemorated.

As Canberrans have come to expect, Anzac Day began as a chilly morning, slightly warmer than normal, but the dawn service was very moving. It had an address by Colonel Susan Neuhaus, who is the first female who has been afforded this honour. Following the service, I was honoured to be asked by DEFGLIS, which is a charity which supports and represents the Defence Force members who identify as LGBTI, as well as their families, to jointly lay a rainbow wreath at the stone of remembrance, with Kate McGregor, the most senior transgender member to serve in defence. Supported by members of each service, it was a simple but powerful ceremony in the early light of the morning.

Later that morning I returned to the Australian War Memorial for the national ceremony, which was ably watched over by ADFA's Foxtrot Squadron, which formed the royal guard, who were supported by the band of the Royal Military College, Duntroon. The ceremony commemorated both those who fought in Gallipoli and all those who have served Australia in its Defence Force. Of particular note was the address by Bob Semple, a former Rat of Tobruk, who told his story and shared his wisdom of 90-plus years. The ceremony also included one of the largest marches in recent years, with several hundred from the Australian Army Apprentices Association marching together on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Army apprenticeship scheme. I was delighted to have opened the anniversary gathering on the previous night.

After the conclusion of the national ceremony I was honoured to represent the ACT government at the French embassy and to lay a wreath on behalf of the people of the territory. The ceremony fell on the centenary of the second battle of Villers-Bretonneux, and the French ambassador spoke of the service and the sacrifice of those who served in France and in that battle in particular.

Finally on that day I attended the Last Post ceremony at the Australian War Memorial to hear the story of Lieutenant Ralph Elsmere Claridge, who died in France in 1918 and to lay a wreath on behalf of the people of the ACT. The War Memorial's Last Post ceremony is simple and important. It is held at 4.55 every day to remember those


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