MEMORIAL: From a cuppa to a top memorial
FOR Nancy Bates, the entire vision for the Gallipoli to Armistice Memorial started with a coffee.
Speaking to a packed crowd at the memorial, Ms Bates said herself and former mayor Gerard O'Connell shared a vision for a new entrance to Queens Park.
"Within hours we were talking to the RSL President Bob Evans, we ordered the statue and during the campaign we developed a vision to build this," Ms Bates said.
Ms Bates, president of the Queen's Park Military Trail Project Committee, said the grants from all three levels of government helped form the bones and flesh of the vision. She thanked the people involved in the project for their hard work and dedication.
"My final thank you, and the most important thank you, is to those who are here - but they are not here," Ms Bates said.
"In this memorial you will read and hear their words, understand a little of what they endured and I hope feel a sense of wonder.
"I hope you wonder as I do not only at their achievements and courage but also at their forbearance, humility, modesty, their loyalty to their country and their pals, maintained through atrocious conditions and inhumane circumstances.
"As I delved into those letters collected by the late Jean Hunter, I wondered at their determination to stay cheerful despite appalling events.
"I wish I had known the people whose words echo through this memorial and I hope flow into the hearts of visitors.
"I hope also that after you feel you have walked just a small way with our original Anzacs that you stand a little straighter, a little stronger, and understand what a precious legacy we have to guard."
VIDEOS: The speeches in full