Topic: ANZAC

100th anniversary of Armistice Day

By Tema Hemi
  • Auckland

A memorial service ceremony was held today at the Auckland War Memorial Museum to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day.

One Vietnam veteran says it's imperative for the generations of today to hold on to this special part of New Zealand history. 

The 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month, a time and day that echoes across the whole world. 

WWI claimed 18,277 lives, many of whom never returned home.

Different families were at today's ceremony to remember their ancestors who fought in the 'Great War'. 

One Auckland local said, " We've got five people in the field of remembrance from the First World War, and my father fought with the Māori Battalion in the Second World War. So we've got a boy from France, a boy from Gallipoli and Palestine a set of two brothers all in the Field of Remembrance."

An ex-army veteran said, "My nephew Josh and I went out to look for a cross of an uncle who died in world war one, four days before the Armistice. We still gotta find him yet but we will."

Another Auckland man described the photo he brought with him to today's ceremony, "The two photos are my father's father who was at the battle of the Somme, and my mother's father who served throughout the whole war as a stretcher bearer."

Ex-army veteran Bobby Newson (Ngāpuhi) says, "It's a very special day, a day of remembrance because all peoples of the world were affected by the war no matter which war it was, they all had a great effect upon the world.

"So I cast my thoughts to our ancestors those who fought and the many that never returned home. I heard what the student of Kings College said in her speech and it resonated with me," he said.

"We should look at our own hands and ask ourselves what they are for, are they hands to pull triggers to shoot others, or are they for working and providing, all that she said about the use of one's hands. What are the benefits of war? Are they hands to shake to make peace or are they hands to assault."