Rugby men salute soldiers' sacrifices

17:00, Apr 23 2014
Invercargill Blues players
REFLECTION: Invercargill Blues players Pehi Te Whare, left, Waaka Parkinson, Lee Murray and Micheal Peterson reflect on what Anzac Day means to them.

Athletes are used to having their head in the game, but when it comes to Anzac Day some Invercargill sportspeople have their minds set firmly in the past.

For Invercargill rugby club Blues, their players consider Anzac Day a time to reflect on the sacrifices made by soldiers of the two world wars.

Lee Murray said Anzac Day was a special occasion in New Zealand's history. The sacrifices made by those who fought were "inspirational and took a lot of courage", he said.

It was important for people to take time to reflect on what the soldiers had done for the country, he said. "I've got a lot of respect for anyone who did that."

Fili Tagicakibau said Anzac Day would always have a special meaning for him as his grandfather fought in the war. He tried to attend Anzac services whenever he could, he said.

Pehi Te Whare said for him Anzac Day was a time to reflect on the sacrifices made by the soldiers and what they had done for New Zealand.

Waaka Parkinson, who is also in the army reserves, said Anzac Day was a chance for people to remember not just the soldiers but the families left behind.

There was barely a family left untouched by the casualties of the Great War and it was important to reflect on the sacrifices of anyone who served. He would be participating in the dawn service tomorrow, he said.

Micheal Peterson said for him Anzac Day was about remembering the sacrifices made by the soldiers. He had attended dawn service parades in the past and would do so again tomorrow.


The Southland Times