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... as we that are left grow old [South Australia]

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Media Release The Hon Bruce Scott MP Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Federal Member tor Maranoa


6 November 1998

... As We That Are Left Grow Old [South Australia]

As South Australia’s nine surviving World War I veterans remember their fallen comrades on Remembrance Day, all South Australians are encouraged to take a minute to honour the sacrifice of Australians who have died while serving their country.

This Remembrance Day - Wednesday 11 November - marks the 80th anniversary of the end of World War I, a conflict which saw 416,000 Australians volunteer for service. Of these 324,000 served overseas. Two-thirds suffered casualties and more than 60,000 Australians never came home.

Australia’s surviving veterans remember the horror of war all too vividly. South Australia’s Howard Pope, now 101 years old, served in the 27th Battalion, Australian Imperial Force. From April 1917 to September 1918 Mr Pope served on the Western Front and was involved in major campaigns including the battles of Morlancourt, Amiens, Mont St Quentin and storming the Hindenburg Line.

"At the Battle of Albert the Germans occupied a ridge and were on high ground. The word came that we were going to attack the Germans at one o’clock in the afternoon. Unusual for a daylight one, so at one o’clock the artillery opened fire and we followed the artillery along," Mr Pope recalled.

"When we got about three parts of the way the Germans must have got orders to retreat. Well they got up, running away. The officer alongside me knelt down and I put the machine gun on his shoulder and mowed them down. It was slaughter really. I always remember that very particular day, I can see it now, the backs of them, being slaughtered, dropping down, shooting them in the back," Mr Pope said.

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Bruce Scott, is urging all Australians on this Remembrance Day to remember the price of war - the sacrifice of 102,807 Australians who have died fighting for their country during the past century.

"Their courage and sacrifice is part of our heritage. The simple gesture of observing a minute’s silence at 11 a.m. on the 11 November will ensure that heritage continues to be treasured," Mr Scott said.


Attention News Editor: South Australia’s World War I Diggers are Herbert Bumard, Frank Haines, Jesse Palmer, William Parham, Howard Pope, Thomas Robinson and Albert Whitmore. Allied veterans living in South Australia are William Lawrence and Ted Reed.

The national Remembrance Day Ceremony at the Australian War Memorial Canberra will be broadcast on ABC Television and Radio.

Media Contact: 09/11/1998

... As we that are left grow old Page 2 of 2

Gary Kent (Ministerial): 02 6277 7820 or 0419 854 211

Phil Diak (Departmental): 02 6289 6578 or 0411 107 261 09/11/1998