Dark clouds gathered and darkness was yet to be swept away by the rising sun as an estimated 800 people quietly made their way to the Two Wells War Memorial Gardens for the annual Anzac Day service on Tuesday, April 25.
Rugged against the Autumn morning chill, mums and dads and their children, along with grandparents and neighbours, waited patiently with veterans, service men and women, and family, while a cacophony of birds heralded the start of a new day.
A hush fell over those gathered as members of the Two Wells Scout group formed a guard of honour along the path as the catafalque party marched in.
Special guests, family members and individuals alike laid wreaths in remembrance and prayers were quietly spoken.
The mood was one of reverence and respect, of thankfulness and hope.
Two Wells RSL president and District Council of Mallala mayor, Tony Flaherty, led proceedings, as he does every year, saying Anzac day was not only a time to remember those lost but also a time to pay tribute to the many men and women currently serving our country in search of peace.
Mr Flaherty introduced Islamic Association of South Australia Imam Shaikh Mohammad Tawhidi to the crowd – whose social media accounts give voice to a constant campaign against ISIS and other extremists – urging those in attendance to chat with the shaikh.
Quietly spoken, Imam Tawhidi said the service was “very inspiring” and it was a pleasure to attend.
In the past the shaikh has had death threats made against him because of his solid relationship with government officials, however, he seeks to promote peace, tolerance, equality and respect.
Following the service, members of the local branch of the Country Women’s Association, the Wells Girls, distributed freshly baked Anzac biscuits while later a team of volunteers served a gunfire breakfast of sausages, bacon, eggs, toast and beans in the community centre.
A big shout out to local Two Wells business, Patchis Pizza, who donated a massive 45 kilograms of bacon and more than 30 dozen eggs for the breakfast.
With the number of people attending the Anzac Day service in Two Wells each year there is little doubt future generations will continue to honour and pay homage to Australia’s service men and women.
Their sacrifices will forever be remembered.
Lest we forget.