Deputy chief of army, Major General Natasha Fox, has praised the Australian Defence Force's (ADF) support of the community in recent natural disasters as she gave an address on Friday ahead of Anzac Day on Monday.
Major General Fox gave the Anzac address at the War Widows' 27th Field of Remembrance Dedication Ceremony and Anzac Day service at El Alamein Village in Lyneham.
Her speech focused on service, sacrifice and the common good.
"I've recently watched our Australian community request the support of our Australian Defence Force, of your Australian Defence Force, for very many reasons," she began.
"We have been called on recently to support our Australian community in floods, in bushfires, in cyclones, in pandemics or deployed offshore to support Australia's national interests.
"Sometimes this service and sacrifice of the Australian Defence Force is not visible to the Australian community until moments such as these when we pause for reflection.
"It is in these moments that we can remember, we can express pride in service and acknowledge that military service requires a sacrifice for the common good."
Major General Fox said service was "about the greater good".
"It is putting others before yourself. Putting your nation, your community before yourself. It is more than a job. It is about supporting others, lifting others and providing hope," she said.
She said that sacrifice extended to the military families and the war widows, in particular, who provided support, comfort and companionship to their members.
The Australian War Widows was founded in 1945 to help the wives of men who had died while serving their country.
Widows all over Australia strive for recognition to have the impact of war acknowledged and of the lasting pain and destruction war brings to families- Australian War Widows ACT immediate past president Shirley Percival
The ACT War Widows now has 91 members, including 46 honorary life members.
The first ACT Field of Remembrance Ceremony took place at St John's Church in Reid in 1994. Since 2000, it has been held at the Sir Leslie Morshead Manor at El Alamein Village, which is run by RSL LifeCare.
During its field of remembrance ceremony, veterans, war widows, their family and friends are invited to place a small wooden cross to remember their loved one. The crosses remain in place until after Anzac Day.
Australian War Widows immediate past ACT president, Shirley Percival, made a poignant statement in her address on Friday.
"It is our hope in the future a time will come when they'll be no war widows," she said.
Mrs Percival said, as well as the red poppy, some of the the war widows also wore a white poppy, which was a symbol of peace.
"As they, who know all too well of the difficulties and heartbreak of the prolonged caring of those men who came home from war physically and mentally incapacitated," she said.
"The white poppy is also a symbol of remembrance for all casualties of war, civilians and armed forces personnel. Widows all over Australia strive for recognition to have the impact of war acknowledged and of the lasting pain and destruction war brings to families."
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