Anzac Day 2021 has been a return to normality for Cromwell with public services being held in both Bannockburn and Cromwell last Sunday as we remembered those Australians and New Zealanders who served and died in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations and the contributions of all those who have served.
Rain cleared intime to lay wreaths at the Cromwell cenotaph on Melmore Terrace with Cromwell’s last surviving WWII soldier, 101 year old Tom Landreth, being accompanied by Leiutenant Colonal Dean Gerling from The New Zealand Army as he laid a wreath at the cenotaph.
Leiutenant Colonel Dean Gerling along with his wife, Squadron Leader Bethany Gerling from the New Zealand Airforce were pleased to be a part of the commemorations in Cromwell.
“Leiutenant Dean Gerling attended school in Cromwell and Returned Sevicemen’s Association president Dennis Ryan was pleased to see him along with his family return to Cromwell for the day of rememberance.
“It was great to see Dean back in town, we certainly appreciate the time he spent in Cromwell.
“it’s been a stressful year putting alternative plans in place ifor Anzac Day ncase of a change in Covid-19 alert levels.
“We needed to have a back-up plan in case we ended up in a higher alert situation, thankfully we didn’t need to implement these plans.
“The services mark special times in our country’s history, and it’s a privilege to be a part of the services each year,” he says.
A short service was also held in the Cromwell cemetery where poppy’s were placed on ex-servicemen’s graves.
Mayor Tim Cadogan attended the service in the Cromwell cemetery before heading to Omakau to continue remembering.
Numbers were slightly down on previous years with Mr Ryan putting the small decline down to Anzac Day falling in the middle of the school holidays, and the weather on the day.