By Associate Professor Kate Hunter
Our focus on Anzac Day tends to be on people, especially combatants and their families, and their experiences of fighting, wounding, dying and grieving. Those experiences were powerful – catastrophic in many cases – and their aftermath long-lasting. The re-telling of their stories connects us to the generation who endured the Great War and, because those emotions and rituals are powerful forces they resonate in our own lives.
After the earthquakes in Kaikoura last week, the Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Darwin, Commanding Officer CMDR Phillip Henry and her crew were sent to support the response to the emergency.
As Lieutenant Brett Schulz said, in the Navy you have to “remain rubbery” – flexible and ready for change.
“One minute you might be ironing your whites in preparation for a Fleet Review, the next minute you’re in a sea boat heading ashore to render assistance to an earthquake affected town.”
LSET Vinnie Carrol and LSA Dan Colbert have shared their experiences helping the people of Kaikoura.
Two years ago, I undertook a pilgrimage to the Somme with my Kiwi fiancé and our baby son. I’m not a religious person and I don’t bandy about the term ‘pilgrimage’. But as the great granddaughter of a Somme veteran and the fiancée of a former New Zealand army officer, there was indeed something of the spiritual in our passage around those beautiful green fields of France.