Residents pay their respects | Photos

RESIDENTS braved the wet and cold conditions on Friday to pay their respects to those who served in the Vietnam War.

A service was held at the Carillon to commemorate Vietnam Veterans Day, and was attended by veterans, servicemen and families.  

Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia Bathurst Sub Branch president John Murphy led the service. 

He was joined by Reverend Howard Knowles, who led the congregation in prayer. 

Mr Murphy spoke about the significance of the Battle of Long Tan, which saw 18 Australians lose their lives and a further 21 wounded. 

“The battle was one of the heaviest conflicts of the Vietnam War,” he said. 

Vietnam was the longest war Australia had been involved in at the time.

It was faced with controversy and opposition, and was also the first war to give civilians a harrowing look at the realities of war as it was witnessed live on television. 

“Today we remember all who served, we remember those who died, we remember those who were scarred physically and mentally, we remember their families and their loved ones who suffered,” Mr Murphy said. 

“For many, the war did not end when they returned home.” 

Following Mr Murphy’s comments, people were invited to lay wreaths on the Carillon as a way to pay their respects to those who fought for freedom.

Another commemoration service will be held at Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park on Sunday from 11am.