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ANZAC Spirit Alive in Gallipoli

Angeline Lambert lays pohutukawa on the grave of Private Edgar Jennings, who died at Gallipoli aged 19.

23 April 2012

The spirit of the ANZACs was demonstrated recently when the New Zealand Defence Force contingent in Gallipoli made a visit to Shrapnel Valley Cemetery on the Gallipoli Peninsula.

Upper Hutt resident, Angeline Lambert, a civilian who is part of the Maori Cultural Group with the Defence contingent explains: "During a visit to my dentist a few weeks before going to Gallipoli, the Dental Nurse, Lisa, mentioned that her father’s uncle was buried in Gallipoli. I offered to take something on behalf of their family to put on his grave. She was unsure where he was buried, however, it was easily found through the Commonwealth War Graves Commission web site."

Lisa’s Uncle was Private Edgar Jennings, a member of the Expeditionary Force. He was killed in action on 3 August 1915 and buried at Shrapnel Valley Cemetery on the Gallipoli Peninsula. He is believed to have been the last person killed at Quinn's Post. Edgar was 19 years old.

"Shrapnel Valley Cemetery is beautifully kept and it was most fortunate that we were able to visit and place mementos from home on Edgar’s grave. Principal Chaplain (Army) Michael Subritzky, performed a karakia at Edgar’s graveside and a stone from the beaches of Devonport was placed on his headstone," Angeline said.

"I was lucky to have had my Grandfather return from Gallipoli twice and I felt honoured to have been able to do this for someone else's family. We currently have Jonathan Brumley with us, the winner of the National Bank RSA Cyril Bassett VC National Speech Competition.

"He is only 16 years old and when I look at him and think that Edgar was only three years older when he died, it hits home how much was sacrificed yesterday for our today. Edgar is as much a part of our NZ Defence Force family today as he was back then.

"Ka maumahara tonu tatou ki a ratou.

We will remember them."

The official New Zealand contingent at Gallipoli includes the Vice Chief of Defence Force, Rear Admiral Jack Steer, and a small group of New Zealand Defence Force personnel including an Army chaplain, catafalque guard, Maori cultural group, and members of the NZ Army Band.

The Anzac Day ceremonies in Gallipoli begin on Tuesday 24 April with the Turkish International Service and conclude with the New Zealand Service at Chunuk Bair on 25 April. The services will be attended by dignitaries from New Zealand, Australia and Turkey.

ENDS

For further information please contact Ally Clelland, Defence Communications Group 021 569 130

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