Kokoda Track Dawn Service – Ruby Crowle

Ruby Crowle, of Haileybury College, was tasked with a Dawn Service speech on her recent Kokoda School Treks trip to the Kokoda Trail….

In war, everyone is a bad guy. For us, living in the sheltered community of Melbourne’s suburbs, it’s easy for us to excuse the acts of war that happen, and have happened around us, as something that doesn’t affect us.

For those who were thrust into the war in PNG, the reality of a safe life as a farm boy, clerk or salesman was replaced with the shocking and confronting truth of a war that was raging not far from our home.

The 2/14th and 2/16th Battalions of the 21st Brigade, led by Brigadier Arnold Potts relieved the Militia Forces of their struggles to hold Isurava Village on August 26th 1942.

The implementation of these soldiers is described as ‘not only critical to the Battle of Isurava, but the whole Kokoda Campaign.

Now imagine standing here where we are today. Almost 75 years ago this ground was littered with bodies, and the screams of wounded men traveled throughout the mountains and valleys. We take for granted the simplicity of a life without war, but the reality is we are surrounded by it.

The wars in Syria and Iraq draw men and women of our country into chaos and destruction. Innocent civilian’s lives are in danger, and for what? War has no purpose.

It’s only result is lives taken too soon, and a memorial for us to mourn the brave soldiers who fought for the protection of our nation.