The south remembers

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Red poppy: A single lone poppy was placed at the Invercargill Cenotaph to commemorate Anzac Day on Saturday. Photo: Laura Smith

THIS Anzac Day New Zealanders came together standing apart Stand At Dawn event.

Jointly held by The Returned and Services Association (RSA) and New Zealand Defence Force, the event aimed for people to still take part in a service as this year was the first time public Anzac Day Services were cancelled.

Standing in spirit: The Anzac spirit of Invercargill residents was evident on a soggy Saturday morning as they listened to the Stand At Dawn service on the radio. Invercargill RSA secretary Cindy (left) and Peter Kennedy with neighbours Bradley, Charlie (4) and Tyler Veint (12). Photo: Laura Smith

Invercargill RSA secretary Cindy Kennedy took part with her husband, Peter, and neighbours when they stood outside their house at 6am on Saturday to honour those who had served in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations.

Mrs Kennedy also made a wreath to hang on her fence. Made from her husband’s dart board, the wreath had poppies pinned to it with the text of The Ode placed in the centre.

It was a sad time for RSA members, but it seemed the national Stand At Dawn event was popular, she said.

“We can’t be at the cenotaph like we are every year, we’re all feeling a bit lost.”

Neighbour Bradley Veint said the family had joined in to commemorate Anzac Day.

The Invercargill Cenotaph, usually frequently visited on this day annually, was quiet. A lone poppy had been placed at its base.

A few people travelled to it for a brief visit, but no-one stayed for longer than a salute or moment’s silence.

Radio New Zealand National radio also held an official dawn service broadcast, which included the Last Post, Ode of Remembrance, the national anthems and an address by the Minister of Defence and Minister for Veterans Ron Mark.

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