On the morning of 25 April 1915, Australian and New Zealand soldiers formed part of the allied expedition. They set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open the Dardanelles to the allied navies. The objective was to capture Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey). The capital of the Ottoman Empire, and an ally of Germany.
The Anzacs landed on Gallipoli and met fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders. Their plan to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months.
At the end of 1915, the allied forces were evacuated. Both sides suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. Over 8,000 Australian soldiers were killed. News of the landing on Gallipoli and the events that followed had a profound impact on Australians at home. The 25th of April soon became the day on which Australians remember the sacrifice of those who had died in the war.
The Anzacs were courageous and although the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives, the Australian and New Zealand actions during the campaign left us all a powerful legacy and the pride they took in the name ANZAC continues to this day.
What does Anzac Day mean today?
With the coming of the Second World War, Anzac Day also served to commemorate the lives of Australians who died in that war. The meaning of Anzac Day today includes the remembrance of all Australians killed in military operations.
The Poppy Flower
In Australia and other countries of the Commonwealth, we recognise the red poppy as the commemorative flower of remembrance. Download one (or all) of these poppy flower colouring-in sheets for each of your kids and spend some time colouring and decorating them. Then pop them in your front window for others to see. The time spent colouring in is also a perfect opportunity for some quiet contemplation, remembering the sacrifices made for us and teaching your family about this time in history.
There are four colouring-in sheets to download, perfect for all ages. To download right-click the image and choose Save Image As, then save it to your computer and print. Or click the download link below the image to save and print. Once you’ve completed your artwork, share a photo with us!
ANZAC Dawn Service on 98five
Join us at 6 am as we broadcast a special 15-minute ANZAC Day Dawn Service. We will be hearing messages from Chaplain Peter Schmidhause from John Paul College, Chaplain Michelle Philp of the Royal Australian Air Force, Amberley and Chaplain Sarah Petchell of the Australian Army. We will also be broadcasting the Last Post.