A chance to honour veterans

BENDIGO RSL members together with post-1975 veteran volunteers are conducting Anzac services in nursing homes, hospitals and retirement villages this week.

Bendigo RSL president Cliff Richards said it was important to present these services to people who were unable to attend the commemorative services on Friday. 

“We are conducting 18 of these services across Bendigo in the days leading up to Anzac Day and RSL members will also be attending school services during the week.”

Holding these services is a Bendigo tradition that started 12 years ago. 

The residents at Benetas St Laurence Court Eaglehawk enjoyed the service yesterday, all joining in to sing the national anthem.

Benetas is home to two surviving war veterans - one being John Taylor, who was a member of Bendigo’s 38th Battalion.

Mr Taylor, now 95, was a Private First Class explosives engineer who served 16 months in Borneo at the end of the Second World War.

“I was 24 when I was in Borneo. I didn’t make it home in time for Christmas,” Mr Taylor said.

“I come to the service at Benetas every year. It brings back lots of all memories.”

This years’ service involved two Afghanistan veterans, Greg Westhead and Breton Mason, as master of ceremonies and guest speaker respectively. 

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