motorcycles, travel, friendship, respect… I may drift off into WTF-land at times so hang in there.

Cherish Peace For The Sake Of Those In Pain

G’day

Thursday April 28, 2016 marks 20 years since a lone gunman went berserk at the Port Arthur Historic Site in South East Tasmania, killing 35 and injuring a further 18.

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While The Pillion and I were in Tasmania, we visited the Port Arthur Historic Site, not because of the events of Sunday April 28, 1996, but to explore the historic grounds and learn some Australian history.

In all honesty I’d forgotten about the events of that day 20 years ago, it’s not something that comes to mind unless someone mentions it.

Stumbling upon the memorial garden erected to honour those people, soon sorted that out.

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A Cross Bearing The Names Of Those Who Died

Even though we enjoyed visiting the Port Arthur historic site, we couldn’t help feel a sense of sadness as we walked through the memorial gardens.

It’s not often I tear up, but I came pretty close that day. The cross bearing the names of those who died was what triggered it.

It nailed the events of that day home for me, like a full-stop at the end of a sentence.

Like saying, “Yep this really happened.”

The Café Remains An Empty Shell

The Café Remains An Empty Shell

The memorial has a peaceful feeling about it, but at the same time its eerie walking through the garden, past the stone walls of The Broad Arrow Café where the events of the day unfolded.

It’s so quiet you can almost hear the cheerful banter and the clink of cutlery that would have been coming from within those walls that day.

The café is an empty shell now, with only the sea breeze coming off Carnarvon Bay, whispering through the openings that were once doors and windows.

It’s very much a “place for quiet reflection”.

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On Thursday 28 April 2016 at 12:30, the Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority will hold a memorial service to mark the 20th anniversary of what has become one of Australia’s darkest days.

The service will remember those that were taken so senselessly from those who loved them:

Winifred Joyce Aplin, 58
Walter John Bennett, 66
Nicole Louise Burgess, 17
Sou Leng Chung, 32
Elva Rhonda Gaylard, 48
Zoe Anne Hall, 28
Elizabeth Jayne Howard, 26
Mary Elizabeth Howard, 57
Mervyn John Howard, 55
Ronald Noel Jary, 71
Tony Vadivelu Kistan, 51
Leslie Dennis Lever, 53
Sarah Kate Loughton, 15
David Martin, 72
Noelene Joyce Martin, 69
Pauline Virjeana Masters, 49
Alannah Louise Mikac, 6
Madeline Grace Mikac, 3
Nanette Patricia Mikac, 36
Andrew Bruce Mills, 39
Peter Brenton Nash, 32
Gwenda Joan Neander, 67
Moh Yee William Ng, 48
Anthony Nightingale, 44
Mary Rose Nixon, 60
Glenn Roy Pears, 35
Russell James Pollard, 72
Janette Kathleen Quin, 50
Helene Maria Salzmann, 50
Robert Graham Salzmann, 57
Kate Elizabeth Scott, 21
Kevin Vincent Sharp, 68
Raymond John Sharp, 67
Royce William Thompson, 59
Jason Bernard Winter, 29

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Cherish Peace For The Sake Of Those In Pain
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10 responses

  1. A somber place indeed. But a good reminder that peace should be at the forefront of all we do.

    There are so many shootings, etc in this country it would be hard to remember them all. They are a regular enough occurrence that we aren’t surprised when they happen anymore, you just become hardened to them. How sad is that?

    Like

    April 27, 2016 at 5:44 AM

  2. Good grief, that one really hit home mate. Certainly is eerie, just reading this.

    Like

    April 27, 2016 at 8:07 AM

  3. So sad, but you provided a nice tribute to those impacted by that terrible day.

    Liked by 1 person

    May 2, 2016 at 5:06 AM

  4. LB

    Thank you for sharing this tribute to tragedy and the people whose lives were lost.
    I was listening to a story on National Public Radio about it.
    Reading through the names … ages 3 to 72, family members, strangers … just awful!
    My community was devastated by the shootings at Virginia Tech in 2007.
    It’s a wound that never heals.
    Beautifully written post.

    Liked by 1 person

    May 2, 2016 at 11:27 AM

    • Thank you Laurie.

      It’s sad that it still happens around the world, almost daily. Perhaps someday we will never hear of, or have to experience such things.

      One can hope

      Like

      May 2, 2016 at 5:15 PM

      • LB

        Yes we can hope, but in the US, it just seems to be getting worse. And THAT is so whole ‘nother subject, sadly

        Liked by 1 person

        May 2, 2016 at 8:30 PM

  5. I’ve been in that cafe both before and after. Such a somber experience now visiting the garden and pond at the back with the plaque reeve of golden leaves in the pond, one for each victim. The silence in there is almost deafening. Such a sad day and I almost cried whilst there myself. You are right it really hits home when you visit.

    Liked by 1 person

    May 5, 2016 at 9:46 PM

    • What makes it all the more poignant is that Tasmania itself, as a state, is such a pristine place and its people so friendly and welcoming.

      Who would have thought something like this could have happened there.

      Thanks for commenting Steve.

      Like

      May 6, 2016 at 8:16 AM

  6. Pingback: That’s a Wrap – Three Weeks Just Isn’t Enough. | EXPERIMENTAL GHOST

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