March­ing for Pop on An­zac Day

The younger gen­er­a­tion is keep­ing the An­zac spirit alive. A South Otago school girl tells the how.

Clutha Leader - - FRONT PAGE -

My name is Brooke Leigha An­der­son, I am 16 years old and a year 12 at South Otago High School. I en­joy most sports like net­ball and swim­ming. I’m also a surf life guard at Kaka Point Surf Live Sav­ing Club.

I live on the An­der­son fam­ily farm in Tau­mata, the el­dest daugh­ter of three girls to James and Ti­rina.

For An­zac Day this year, I am wear­ing Pop’s (Ernest Adam An­der­son) medals, my grandad’s fa­ther - my great-grandad.

I will be march­ing in the An­zac pa­rade in Clin­ton. I’ve at­tended the An­zac pa­rade in Clin­ton most years since I was a baby wear­ing my An­der­son kilt, un­til I grew out of it.

Pop was a com­pany run­ner in the 2nd Bat­tal­ion of the Otago Reg­i­ment. He re­ceived the Mil­i­tary Medal for heroic brav­ery on Septem­ber 29, 1918 dur­ing World War One, when Welsh Ridge and Bon Avis ridge were taken in north­ern France.

Pop had to de­liver dis­patches to base. He had one par­tic­u­larly bad run to do while they were un­der heavy gun fire. It was this run that earned him his decoration for con­spic­u­ous gal­lantry and devo­tion to duty.

This medal was pre­sented to him by the Prince of Wales at For­bury Park in Dunedin on May 19, 1920. Fol­low­ing the pre­sen­ta­tion, Pop is said to have taken his medal off and hid it un­der his coat un­til lo­cal Clin­ton friends re­pinned it on the out­side for ev­ery­one to see.

I want to take part in the pa­rade to show my ap­pre­ci­a­tion for my Pop and the men and women who served in the war for us.

My grandad (Norman An­der­son) wore these medals ev­ery An­zac Day to the pa­rade in Clin­ton, even when he re­tired and moved to Bal­clutha, and he was very proud of them.

It’s a year since Grandad died. He last wore the medals in 2015, the 100th an­niver­sary of WW1.

I am hon­oured to wear them for my Pop and Grandad.

The An­zac Day ser­vice at the Clin­ton Com­mu­nity Cen­tre starts at 10am.

MARY-JO TOHILL

Brooke An­der­son, of Tau­mata, will be keep­ing up a fam­ily tra­di­tion by wear­ing her great-grand­fa­ther Ernest Adam An­der­son’s war medals on pa­rade this An­zac Day, at Clin­ton.

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