Remember-ing the fallen this Monday

On Monday November 11 at 11am residents in Grenfell will pause for a minute to pay their respects to the fallen and to honour those who served for their country.

Grenfell RSL sub-branch will be holding a Remembrance Day service this Monday morning at the memorial park from 11am with the public invited to attend.

With this year the 100th year since the first Remembrance Day in 1919 it is a poignant reminder to locals to show their respect for those who have ensured the safety of their country.

At 11am on November 11, 1918 the guns on the Western Front fell silent after more than four years of continuous warfare. The allied armies had driven the German invaders back, having inflicted heavy defeats upon them over the preceding four months. In November the Germans called for an armistice in order to secure a peace settlement.

The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month attained a special significance in the post-war years. The moment when hostilities ceased on the Western Front became universally associated with the remembrance of those who had died in the war. The first modern world conflict had brought about the mobilisation of over 70 million people and left between 9 and 13 million dead, perhaps as many as one-third of them with no known grave. The allied nations chose this day and time for the commemoration of their war dead.

On the first anniversary of the armistice in 1919 two minutes silence was instituted as part of the main commemorative ceremony at the new Cenotaph in London. The silence was proposed by Australian journalist Edward Honey who was working on Fleet Street. At about the same time a South African statesman made a similar proposal to the British Cabinet who endorsed it. King George V personally requested all the people of the British Empire to suspend normal activities for two minutes on the hour of the armistice 'which stayed the worldwide carnage of the four preceding years and marked the victory of Right and Freedom.' The two minutes silence was popularly adopted and it became a central feature of commemorations on Armistice Day.