Local war memorials hold a wealth of information that the National War Memorial’s records cannot readily show: the impact WWI had on a community through enlistment, and death.
Beenleigh’s war memorial was unveiled by Lieutenant Governor William Lennon on 21 November 1925. Its original location was at the road junction in the town centre.
This white sculpted slab, topped by the Australian Infantry Forces’ ‘Rising Sun’ Badge provides a roll call, but look closely: it’s not alphabetical. The slab, surrounded by a trough of water, bears the names of 61 soldiers, 10 are listed as killed (‘K’ stands beside their names); two died in service (‘D’ denotes their fate).
Nationally, Australia lost 60,000 from a population of about 4,000,000.
Buried where they fell (by decree of the British), Australia’s outpouring of grief was demonstrated through a wave of memorials like this one.
A wall behind the slab carried plaques representing all the services and subsequent conflicts: WWII, Korea, Malaysia and Vietnam. The memorial was relocated to its present site in 1995.
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