Tena kotou katoa e te whanau.
Just a quick run-down on the arrangements for Anzac Day.
There is a contingent of Servicemen from all over expected at the marae where everyone, including visitors, will be accorded a powhiri. There will not be as many coming in the contingent as originally expected. Their arrival is timed for quarter to 7.
The men will assemble outside the fence and when they are called to attention, I shall begin to karanga them, they will march on to the marae atea, followed by all the visitors.
The four sentries standing at each corner of the Memorial Stone, with their heads bowed will be Rana in his Fire Officer’s uniform, one of Louise and Bob’s sons, Teina and I’d like to ask one of my late cousin Haki’s sons-in-law or one of cousin Matu’s sons, or Wayne Stokes. Not sure about Teina, he may not be back. I shall have photos of some of our boys who served overseas on the Memorial Stone – we won’t have all of them, but I’ll choose the ones from inside the whare. Russell to be prepared to raise and lower the flag at the appropriate time in case their official is not in attendance. Bella Te Nana to play the Last Post.
The men will stand in front of the Memorial Stone in front of the forms, the wreaths will be laid, probably by uri of the returned Servicemen from here . The Last Post will be played by Bella, the flag lowered and raised, the reciting of the Ode and hymn “O God our Help in Ages Past” (I’m not quite sure of the order , but we’ll be guided by the men themselves) – all that to be followed by karakia and mihi by Apotoro Hone Matenga . Everyone invited inside for breakfast. Everyone is also invited to attend the parade and celebrations in Russell at 1000.
Arohanui na te kuia o te marae o Te Rawhiti.