Anzac Day in war cemeteries around Australia

For many Australians who have served in our military, are serving still or who support them, commemoration and remembrance can be solitary acts undertaken almost daily. They remember a friend or a loved one who is among the 102,000 Australians killed in war, or the more than 220,000 who have died of causes related to their war service.

On our national days of Remembrance – Anzac Day and Remembrance Day – their personal acts of commemoration come into sharp relief as Australians all around the world gather to remember, with gratitude, the selfless courage of the men and women who have served.

The vast majority of Australians do not have to travel far to do so. Not all of our war dead are at rest in battlefield cemeteries overseas. Some 13,000 Australians lie here in civil and general cemeteries as well as Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemeteries and Gardens of Remembrance throughout Australia.

This Anzac Day, more than 10,000 people stood among grave markers and commemorative plaques in local commemorative sites cared for by the Office of Australian War Graves (OAWG) within DVA.

For instance, around 2,500 people attended a Dawn Service provided by the Kedron-Wavell Returned and Service League Sub Branch at the Lutwyche War Cemetery in Brisbane, and 3,000 took part in a service at the Adelaide River Cemetery, delivered by the Coomalie Council with the Assistance of the OAWG. 

Annual services took place at: Springvale War Cemetery in Victoria; Wagga Wagga, Nowra and Deniliquin war cemeteries in New South Wales; the Launceston War Cemetery in Tasmania; while the Geebung Returned and Services League sub-branch hosted 500 attendees at the Queensland Garden of Remembrance in Brisbane.

There are War Cemeteries and Gardens of Remembrance in every state and territory.  Together with military cemeteries in NSW, they form part of our nation’s commemorative estate.

For more information about visiting any Australian War Cemetery or Garden of Remembrance or the Australian Government’s program of official commemoration, call 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) or visit your local DVA OAWG Depot, which you can find on the DVA website.

Dim photo of people with umbrellas gathered in cemetery

Left: Dawn Service, Lutwyche War Cemetery, Queensland

People gathered at cemetery in the dark

Below left:  Dawn Service, Adelaide River War Cemetery, Northern Territory