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By WO2 Peter Young
THE strains of 2RAR Pipes and Drums were heard
for the first time in the small town of Weipa as its
new war memorial was opened on October 16.
Weipa, on the west coast of Cape York, is home to
B Coy 51FNQR (the local regional force surveillance
unit) and 396 ECSW located at RAAF Base Scherger.
The Weipa RSL sub-branch received grants and
donations to replace the original memorial.
B Coy 51FNQR and local residents and busi-
nesses donated money to purchase three brass service
badges that adorn the memorial. The new memorial
is a fitting place where locals can honour the memory
of those Australians from all the communities on the
west coast of Cape York who lost their lives in war.
2RAR's Pipes and Drums arrived a couple of
days early so they could visit and play at Napranum
Aboriginal Community Pre-School and the Western
The kids loved it and took full advantage of the
opportunity to try and play the bagpipes and beat the
51FNQR provided the catafalque party, and the
flag orderly was from 396 ECSW.
The ceremony started in the early evening with the
mounting of the B Coy catafalque party and a march,
including veterans and local schoolchildren, led by
the Pipes and Drums and greeted at the memorial by
the Western Cape College Choir singing a hymn.
The occasion was hosted by a former RSM 2RAR
and now CEO of Weipa, Ian Pressley, and the guest
speaker was the CO51FNQR Lt-Col Steve Brain,
who spoke of how war had touched the communi-
ties on Cape York and of the sacrifices made by its
Lt-Col Brain, along with the President of the
Weipa RSL Sub-Branch, Neil Dickinson, then
unveiled the new memorial and wreaths were laid to
the sounds of the lone piper.
The ceremony ended with the Pipes and Drums
marching off and the catafalque party dismounting.
Army November 11, 2010
Day of celebration: CO 51FNQR Lt-Col Steve Brain lays a wreath at Weipa in memory of the fallen from the west coast of Cape York
(top left) as the 2RAR Pipes and Drums perform (top right) at the opening of the new war memorial (above). Photos by Tanya Dickinson
New beat for memorial
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