Afghanistan veterans receive hero’s welcome in Brisbane parade

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 21: Crowds watch almost 3000 veterans and families and loved ones of veterans from Operation Slipper march through Brisbane’s CBD on Saturday March 21, 2015 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Michelle Smith/Fairfax Media) Photo: Michelle Smith Six-year-old Lachlan Skillen and dad Shane watch almost 3000 veterans of Operation Slipper march through Brisbane’s CBD on Saturday. Photo: Michelle Smith
Nanjing Night Net

More than 3000 veterans of Australia’s military campaign in Afghanistan were given a hero’s welcome in Brisbane on Saturday morning.

The 14-year military operation resulted in the deaths of 41 ADF members, with hundreds more suffering injuries, both physical and psychological.

The scorn their predecessors who served in Vietnam faced upon their return was nowhere to be seen.

Instead, they were greeted with waving Australian flags and signs expressing a nation’s gratitude.

In one of  a series of such parades held across Australia, the Operation Slipper veterans from all Australia’s defence forces marched though the CBD streets under an overcast sky.

A police spokesman said more than 5000 people lined the streets to watch the returned servicemen and women – and a sheep – march through the city.

The sheep, Stan the Ram, was the mascot for the Enoggera-based 8th/9th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment.

A planned flyover of three RAAF C-17 Globemasters had to be cancelled for operational reasons, believed to be the ongoing aid effort to cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu.

However, two Black Hawk helicopters did provide some aerial support for the troops on the ground.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk attended, along with Governor Paul de Jersey, Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk and federal Attorney-General George Brandis

“I especially want to acknowledge the families with us today, who pay the ultimate sacrifice with the loss of a loved one, killed in action during Operation Slipper,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

Parades were held in every capital city, as well as Townsville, across Australia on Saturday morning.

Operation Slipper began in October 2001 and formally ended on December 31 last year.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Comments are currently closed.