SOME of WA’s last surviving WWII Veterans stole the hearts of about 300 attendees at our 75th Anniversary of Victory in the Pacific commemorative service at the State War Memorial in Kings Park on Saturday morning.
SEE ALL THE PHOTOS: Click here to enjoy our special VP Day 75th photo gallery
RSLWA State President Peter Aspinall AM said Victory in the Pacific Day was a date that we should never forget.
“World War II came very close to home, and the people who served during this conflict defended our country,” he said. “Many of our men and women who served during WWII are no longer with us. It is for this reason that the anniversary of Victory in the Pacific is so important, as it provides all of us with an opportunity to celebrate those WWII veterans who are still with us, and to commemorate those who are not.
“VP Day is a special time to reflect on the important role that Australians played to end the war in the Pacific region after three years of warfare from 1942 to 1945. The victory was because of such commitment by our Australian armed forces, together with the support of the United States.
“On this 75th Anniversary held at Kings Park, we commemorate those who served and the 17,000 Australians who lost their lives while fighting Japan, some 8000 of them who died in Japanese captivity.”
Premier Mark McGowan delivered a beautiful speech about the importance of the occasion, before laying a wreath with one of the very few Australians to witness the signing of the Japanese Instrument of Surrender, Wanneroo Sub-Branch President Jack Le Cras, 94.
WWII LIVING LEGENDS (L-R): Harold Garrett, POW Arthur Leggett, Ivan Walter, Bill Ritchie, Jack Le Cras, Bill Grayden and Doug Arrowsmith.