Lives changed af­ter An­zac tour

Western Suburbs Weekly - - From The Archives - By MON­TANA ARDON

FOR for­mer Perth Mod­ern School stu­dent Connor Shaw, trav­el­ling to Turkey on the Premier’s An­zac Tour in 2015 was “life-chang­ing”.

“It was such a mon­u­men­tal and emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ence for me; it shaped a lot of my be­liefs and val­ues,” the 18-year-old said.

“The An­zac le­gacy em­bod­ies what it means to be an Aus­tralian, which is spe­cial right now.”

Ev­ery year, stu­dents from WA are se­lected to go on the April tour af­ter writ­ing an es­say de­scrib­ing the sig­nif­i­cance of the An­zac com­mem­o­ra­tions to them.

Now un­der­tak­ing a Bach­e­lor of Arts ma­jor­ing in In­ter­na­tional Re­la­tions, Connor said the tour had in­flu­enced him to give back to his coun­try.

“I’d like to get in­volved in the Army Re­serves,” he said.

“I want to un­der­stand the mate­ship, sac­ri­fice and courage they (the An­zacs) ex­pe­ri­enced.

“I’d also like to work for the Depart­ment of For­eign Af­fairs as a diplo­mat, to pre­vent con­flict be­tween dif­fer­ent cul­tures and na­tions; war is a ter­ri­ble thing.”

Six years ear­lier, fel­low Perth Mod­ern School grad­u­ate Do­minique Maberly was pre­par­ing to go on the 2009 An­zac Tour to France and Bel­gium, an ex­pe­ri­ence that she also de­scribed as “emo­tional”.

Now a doc­tor, the then-16 year-old said it was im­por­tant the An­zac story be taught in schools.

“It is re­ally good for the fu­ture gen­er­a­tion to re­mem­ber what hap­pened, as we are go­ing to grow up to be the fu­ture lead­ers of this coun­try,” she said, a sen­ti­ment Connor echoed.

“It is re­ally im­por­tant to pre­serve and hon­our the le­gacy of the An­zacs, and to un­der­stand the con­se­quences of con­flict.”

I want to un­der­stand the mate­ship, sac­ri­fice and courage they (the An­zacs) ex­pe­ri­enced.

Do­minique Maberly (pic­tured left with fel­low Tour par­tic­i­pant Christo­pher Wong), also a Perth Mod­ern stu­dent, went on the same tour in 2009 and echoed Connor’s sen­ti­ments.

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