SPECIAL TRIBUTE Lodge remembers our ‘vacant chairs’
SOLEMN, respectful, realistic and moving were words used to describe the Gayndah Masonic Lodge’s Vacant chair ceremony on Tuesday night.
The Gayndah Lodge threw open its doors to invite its community to the service dedicated to those who have made the supreme sacrifice in all theatres of war.
Carmel Waugh It made me think of those who had given their lives and nobody knew of them.
The “vacant chair” represents the empty chairs left in homes and communities when people do not return from war.
The ceremony dates back to 1875 when first used during the American Civil War and has been used since with the permission of lodges in America.
Guest speaker WO Class 1 RSM Lofty Wendt described the service as sombre and realistic.
“It pays homage to those who went before us,” he said.
SAC Peter Raffels said any service that honours our fallen comrades is to be admired.
Carmel Waugh said the sentiments were lovely and moving.
“It made me think of those who had given their lives and nobody knew of them,” she said.
Sandy Moerland said the service was very respectful.
“It is nice people don’t forget,” she said.
LESTWE FORGET: Gayndah Masonic Lodge performed amoving but sombre ceremony for its Vacant Chair ceremony to remember fallen soldiers. Cpl Kevin Murree, Leading Seamen Craig Fothergill and Senior Aircraftsman Peter Raffels were involved in the ceremony while Kay Wharton (Inner Wheel) and Sandy Moerland (Legacy) lay wreaths.