On Friday 10th of November the College Community paused to Remember all those who have died in war. In addition to our current students and the college staff; a number of visitors were also present as 200 members of the Year 7 (2018) cohort were attending their Orientation Day here at Our Lady’s Mount campus.
All students from Years 5 to 12 gathered in the Centenary Quadrangle to join in the Ceremony of Commemoration of the Fallen. Members of the College Cadet Unit provided the Flag Party as well as an armed Guard around the College Cenotaph which is inscribed with the names of all of our ‘Old Boys’ that have paid the Supreme Sacrifice in the two World Wars. The year of 1917 was the worst of the First World War years in terms of the way in which the war was proceeding for the allies. It also saw the death of nine of our Old Boys on the Western Front. The Assistant Head of College and Commanding Officer of the Cadet Unit; Lieutenant Colonel (AAC) Peter Frost set the scene for the assembly by outlining the importance of Remembrance Day and the relevance it holds to us now and into the future. He also explained the significant aspects of the ceremony and the meaning behind the symbolism of what was taking place before us.
The Deputy Head of College, Mr Brennan, pronounced the ‘Ode to the Fallen’. The Head of Mission Mr Phillip Davis and members of the college staff: Ms Martina Cooper, Ms Jennifer Hoare and College Captain, Harley McGuiggan led the assembly in the prayers. All present participated in a respectful and prayerful manner. The sounding of the Last Post by the cadet unit bugler, Cadet Corporal Sam Tsoussis, and observance of the One Minute of Silence were highlights of the event. Many people later commented on the stillness of the whole assembly during both aspects of the ceremony. The Ceremony concluded with the National Anthem which; was superbly led by the college Band under the Baton of Mr Chris Balkizas and assisted by Mr Daniel Williams.
Members of the College Band were again engaged in the Remembrance Day Ceremony on Saturday 11th November. The commemoration was conducted by Waverley Council at the War Memorial situated in Waverley Park. A very large assembly of residents, dignitaries with serving and former Armed Service personnel also in attendance. The College Cadet Unit provided Flag Bearers and mounted a Guard around the memorial for the duration of the ceremony. The bugle calls of Last Post and Reveille; again played skilfully by the Cadet unit Bugler, were poignant reminders of death and sacrifice as well as triumphant hope.
The Centenary of ANZAC Commemorations will continue throughout next year culminating in the 100th Anniversary of the Signing of the Armistice on 11 November 1918.