There was a sea of people and red poppies as hundreds gathered for Remembrance Day services at Thirlmere Memorial Park on Saturday, November 11.
Picton-Bargo-Thirlmere RSL sub-branch president Tim Bennett-Smith said more than 500 people attended the service, making it the “biggest Remembrance Day service the sub-branch has ever had”.
“The service was truly a community event,” he said.
“I want to thank the community for their continued support as they joined us to pause and reflect.
“It was good to see the school kids and parents turn up and make an effort on a Saturday.”
Mr Bennett-Smith said the Tahmoor Girl Guides, Macarthur Greeks, 1st Bargo Scouts group, Black Cockatoos, Thirlmere Public School, Picton High School, Wollondilly Anglican College and members from the Warilla sub-branch attended the service.
“Lots of families came out too,” he said. “It was a really good community service.”
Picton High School student Liam Hodkinson gave an address at the service.
The year 12 Picton High School student was selected to travel to Australian battlefields and memorial sites in Belgium and France in September, on the Premier’s Anzac Memorial Scholarship tour.
Mr Hodkinson spoke about the impact his trip had on him and he talked about mateship and camaraderie.
Mr Bennett-Smith spoke about how Australians made the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of the nation and how it was important to give thanks to those who serviced.
“We must also remember the families of those impacted by war,” he said.
Mr Bennett-Smith was also proud to unveil the renamed museum in the RSL hall.
It was renamed in honour of Aussie Biele, who was the former president of the sub-branch.
“Aussie was the instigator behind the idea to have a museum,” Mr Bennett-Smith said.
“It was great to honour him in that way.”
Wilton resident and NSW surveyor general Narelle Underwood attended the service and she took a soil sample from the grounds.
Soil samples from 1699 towns across NSW will be treated, placed in jars and installed into a wall at Sydney’s Anzac memorial, as part of the Anzac Memorial’s Centenary Project.