Able Seaman Elizabeth Jones has commemorated Anzac Day in Malaysia, Singapore, New Zealand, Micronesia and around Australia but has fond memories of the commemoration services held in her home town of Launceston, Tasmania.
Speaking of commemoration experiences and the importance of Anzac Day evokes a strong response from Able Seaman Jones, whose father is a Navy veteran.
His family posted with him around Australia and abroad before finally settling down in Launceston, where Able Seaman Jones remembers one particular Anzac Day, singing at the city’s Anzac Day Service in the Launceston City Choir, Vox Harmony.
“Anzac Day for me means remembering the sacrifices made by servicemen and women to give us the life we have now and how much we have to be grateful for,” Able Seaman Jones said.
“My father was in the Navy until I was a teenager, so from a young age the day has always had a lot of significance to me and my family.”
It was the experience of Able Seaman Jones’ father that inspired the now Maritime Logistics Supply Chain sailor, who is posted to NUSHIP Supply in Sydney, to join the Navy.
Her brother, a marine technician, is also in the Navy.
“I joined the Navy because of my Dad. Growing up my brother, sister and I were always around Defence personnel, especially during Dad’s overseas postings to Singapore and Micronesia,” Able Seaman Jones said.
I joined the Navy because of my Dad.
“We always lived in Defence housing, surrounded by the families and kids of other members. It was a good way to grow up, the lifestyle and camaraderie were great.”
Since joining the Navy in 2016, Able Seaman Jones has experienced a vast array of what the Navy has to offer. From postings at HMAS Albatross in Nowra, to the now decommissioned HMAS Success, her experience fills her with pride, particularly when she sees the public commemorating Anzac Day.
“When I see the public commemorating Anzac Day it gives me hope that younger generations will remember the sacrifices that made our country what it is today,” Able Seaman Jones said.
This year she will not be able to attend a dawn service as she usually does but the importance of the day will not be lost.
“Last year I commemorated Anzac Day on the flight deck of HMAS Canberra whilst docked in Malaysia,” she said.
“In contrast, this year I will be watching the Australian War Memorial commemorative service on TV and conducting my minute of silence on my apartment balcony as part of the 'stand at dawn' initiative.”
Able Seaman Jones said regardless of where Anzac Day is commemorated, either abroad, in her home town, or even on her balcony, the day is a significant annual event.
Australians are encouraged to commemorate Anzac Day by watching the commemorative service televised from the Australian War Memorial and pledging to #StandAtDawn. Australians can also participate by sharing stories, photos and videos via social media channels.