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“…my Great Grand Uncles were killed in action”
Ko Takitimu tōku waka
Ko Ruawharo tōku tohunga
Ko Tamatea Arikinui tōku rangatira
Ko Whakapuanake tōku maunga
Ko Wairoa tōku awa
Ko Wairoa tōku rohe
Ko Kihitu tōku marae
Ko Te Aio tōku Whare Kai
Ko Ngāti Kahu tōku hapū
Ko Ngāti Kahungunu tōku iwi
My name is Alysha Hannah, I am twelve years old and a big sister to my twin brothers Joseph and Jesse. We live in Manurewa with my parents Raewyn and Dwaynn but are lucky to live close to my aunties, uncles and cousins. I currently attend Manurewa Intermediate as a Year 8 student where I am a librarian, I love sports and my favourite subject is science.
I was extremely proud to be chosen for the Pearl of the Islands Foundation ANZAC Study Tour. It is an awesome opportunity and a great honour because I get to represent my family’s ANZAC heroes at the 99th dawn parade at Gallipoli. This includes my Great Great grandfather on my dad’s side, George Harold Hannah who fought in World War I and World War II as a trooper. On my mother’s side, my great grandfather Sydney Joseph Hooper and two of my great grand uncles who all fought during World War II as part of the 28th Maori Battalion. Unfortunately my Great Grand Uncles were killed in action.
While our ANZAC heroes did their best to protect us and our country, it’s important to remember those who fought, war is horrible! People died like my Great Grand Uncles. It affects those who fought, their families and country. During ANZAC day’s Dawn Parade, I most appreciate hearing the Ode of Remembrance, listening to the Last Post and the two minutes of silence.
24 April 2014
I am still trying to get it in my head that I am in Turkey. So far everything has been great, wonderful, incredible! The most amazing thing for me so far was seeing the Basilica Cistern in Istanbul. The Basilica Cistern is the largest of several hundred ancient cisterns that lie beneath the city. It provided water to the city in times of siege. The cistern, located near the Hagia Sophia was built in the 6th century during the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I.
Underground, the lights stretched up the columns and onto the roof. These did not light up the cistern but they looked truly wonderful. I have hated seeing all the homeless dogs on the sides of the streets. Stray dogs seem to be part of life in Istanbul. It is sad to see them given that most of them are very nice and friendly - they easily come up to us. I have loved meeting new people and trying new food and drink like 'ayran'. This is a sort of salty yoghurt drink. That may sound weird to Kiwi's but these types of experiences or tastes are very interesting in many ways.
Tomorrow we leave for Canakkale which means we are one step closer to Gallipoli. I am excited because ANZAC day is one day away. Just knowing that I am going to be there where my great grandfather fought makes me feel so proud. Proud I am going to represent all my family back in New Zealand.