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16th November 2023

I begin my contribution by acknowledging our veterans—from the oldest to the youngest, to those Australians still serving and who have served—and the families and communities who support them. On Saturday, 11 November, at the Cooroy Cenotaph, we marked Remembrance Day, a solemn occasion to honour the courage and sacrifice of the brave men and women who have served and continue to serve our nation. Remembrance Day is a day for reflection, not only on the horrors of war but also on the enduring human spirit that strives for peace and justice.

We remember those who paid the ultimate price for their families and their country. We remember the 27 souls from Cooroy and surrounds who never returned from World War I, the then Great War, and the 27 families whose lives were permanently altered. Remembrance Day is a day to remember that, even in the face of unimaginable adversity, humanity has the power to come together, heal and rebuild.

I would also like to take a moment to acknowledge and thank the Cooroy-Pomona RSL Sub Branch for their unwavering dedication in ensuring the Cooroy Cenotaph receives the attention it so deserves. Thanks to their advocacy and the government’s Queensland Remembers grants program, the Cooroy-Pomona RSL were able to secure $40,000 in funding to have this cenotaph upgraded for accessibility, as well as add the names of some 40 fallen soldiers from World War II from the district.

Their tireless efforts and commitment to preserving our history are truly commendable.

As we remember those who have fallen, let us also reaffirm our commitment to peace and unity. Let the Cooroy Cenotaph stand as a symbol of our determination to work together for a better world—a world where conflicts can be resolved through dialogue and diplomacy rather than through the horrors of war.

Thanks to the dedication of the Cooroy-Pomona Sub Branch, this monument stands renewed, reminding us of the debt we owe to those who have served our nation. Let us remember, let us honour and let us strive for a future where the sacrifices of our heroes are truly honoured through peace, unity and a better world for all. Lest we forget.

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