‘‘They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old, Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn, At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them.’’ Hundreds of Matamata residents braved the rain to pay their respects at both the dawn and memorial Anzac Day services at the Matamata Memorial Centre. Deputy Mayor Jan Barnes presided at both the Matamata and Walton commemorative services. She started her address by asking the crowd a number of rhetorical questions including why they had chosen to attend. She also made special mention of the contribution of women in the war. Matamata College head boy Timo Brooky spoke about what Anzac Day meant to him as a young Maori man and about the history of the Maori Battalion. ‘‘I believe the Maori Battalion are the sort of heroes that my generation needs,’’ he said. Head girl Emma Jobe said the service gave everyone the chance to pause and appreciate that we have being blessed with freedom through the actions of the Anzacs. Graeme Waterson from Matamata Returned and Services’ Association said Anzac Day services brought many generations together. ‘‘ We are proud and humbled by the participation of the younger generations.’’ The Last Post was played by Robin Jobe from the Matamata BrassBand as the New Zealand flag was lowered.
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