Media Release – Minister Keogh – This Remembrance Day the Spirit of the Unknown Soldier embodies all who have lost their lives in service

11 Nov 2023

The Hon Richard Marles MP
Minister for Defence

The Hon Matt Keogh MP
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel

Today Australians the world over will pause to honour the more than 103,000 service personnel who have lost their lives in service to our nation.

This Remembrance Day, we remember the fallen, we remember those they left behind and all who have served in Australia’s uniform over more than a century in war, in conflict and as keepers of peace.

On this day 105 years ago, the guns fell silent on the Western Front. An Armistice was signed, leading to the end of the First World War. 

In August, we as a nation, marked the 50th anniversary of the end of Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War, the longest conflict Australia was involved in during the 20th Century. 

Today also marks the 30th anniversary of the interment of the Unknown Australian Solider in the Australian War Memorial’s Hall of Memory, which serves as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made in times of war. He is all of them and he is one of us.

We pause to remember and pay tribute to all who have served, their sacrifices and that of their families.  
We will remember them. 
Lest we forget.

Comments attributed to Minister for Defence, Richard Marles: 

Today we remember the 60,000 Australians who never returned from the Great War.  

And we remember the more than 103,000 Australians who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in serving our nation. 

And we remember those who do the extraordinary act of wearing our nation’s uniform to this very day.

Comments attributed to Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Matt Keogh: 

When we say ‘Lest We Forget’ at the end of the Ode, we mean it; we will remember them.

We do remember them.

This Remembrance Day we pay tribute to all those who have served our nation in war, conflict and in peacekeeping operations. 

It is an honour to represent Australia at the 2023 Remembrance Day commemorative services here in the United Kingdom, in acknowledgement of the historic and enduring relationship between our nations.