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Clermont project to honour war veterans

The wartime sacrifices of almost 50 returned servicemen interred in unmarked graves within Clermont’s cemetery is to be honoured ahead of the centenary of Armistice Day on 11 November 2018.

Isaac Regional Council, as custodian of the cemetery, is to transfer the historic burial rights to the graves to the Clermont RSL Sub-Branch as part of a community project to acknowledge their service.

Mayor Anne Baker memorial headstones and bronze plaques would be installed on each of the graves by the Clermont RSL Sub-Branch, in conjunction with Council, the Clermont community and other RSL sub-branches.

“The intent is to have these memorials installed in time for Remembrance Day which, this year, marks the centenary of the 1918 Armistice which ended the First World War,” Mayor Baker said.

“This will provide fitting and well overdue recognition for these Australian soldiers who have laid unrecognised for so long. Council is proud to support the efforts of the Clermont RSL Sub-Branch in honouring the service and sacrifice of these great Australians who answered the call to arms when their nation needed them.”

Mayor Baker said the men had been interred in paupers’ graves up to 70 years ago as they had no known next of kin.

“Many came to the region to work as stockmen, drovers and miners. They had no relatives living in the local area and all that was really known about them was the property they were living on when they died,” she said.

Cr Baker said Council and the Clermont RSL Sub-Branch had attempted to locate any descendant relatives, distant or close, who could inherit the burial rights of the deceased.

“Of the unmarked graves, only one familial burial rights holder was found and this person was more than willing to transfer these rights to the Clermont Sub-Branch."

7 March 2018