Student’s vow to remember them

Student’s vow to remember them

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St Norbert College year nine student Isabella Hulm wearing the Premier’s ANZAC Student Tour’s uniform. Photograph — Aaron Van Rongen.

A proud fifth generation West Australian, with a long family war service history, will make this year’s ANZAC day a very special one.

Isabella Hulm, one of the youngest students to be selected to represent Western Australia at the 2020 Premier’s ANZAC Student Tour, was looking forward to what she calls a life-changing experience.

The 14-year-old was going to be in Darwin this week to start her journey to commemorate the 78th anniversaries of the bombing of Darwin, followed by a trip to Singapore to commemorate the fall.

However, with the tour getting postponed due to the current health crisis, Isabella will be commemorating ANZAC Day in a Driveway Dawn Service, and will participate in an online webinar ceremony with nine other state youth ambassadors.

For the past six weeks, Isabella has been doing multiple webinars as part of the Premier’s ANZAC Student Tour briefing, with a recent insightful chat with Chris Cher, who would have been the tour guide.

“This ANZAC Day was going to be a life-changing experience for myself,” she said.

“When I heard the news that ANZAC Day commemorations weren’t going ahead as planned this year, I felt bitterly disappointed and heavy hearted.

“I was most looking forward to immersing myself in the experience when visiting the places we had researched in detail, in particular following in the footsteps of the second and fourth Machine Gun Battalion.

“To see and experience the key sights of Darwin and Singapore and link these places to the knowledge I have gained would be amazing and I hope to experience this one day in the future.”

The young historian, who usually finds herself reading her dad’s military book collection, will be reflecting on the life of John Gilmour, an ex-prisoner of war.

“His story captured my imagination and my heart during my research into his life and survival after the fall of Singapore,” she said.

“I would also like to reach out and thank our veterans and the families of soldiers lost. “Their sacrifices will not be forgotten and I am sure that ANZAC Day this year, although not commemorated publicly, will be marked as a most solemn occasion with the respect of our nation.

“The legend of the ANZACs lives and continues to inspire the youth of Australia today. We will remember them.”