We must do more than simply remember these soldiers: Suhaili
By Sohan Das
LABUAN: As the world observed Armistice Day. also known as Remembrance and Poppy Day in some parts, it was no exception in Labuan where Borneo's largest War Cemetery is located.
Keith, who was one of the few WWII survivors wlio landed in Lnbuan in 1945, laying a wreath at the memorial.
As the Chaplain from the Anglican Church concluded his prayers at Ihe "Cross of Sacrifice" at the heart of the cemetery, a bugler and hug-pipers from the Royal Malaysian Police band sounded the "Last Post" and the Lament, followed by "Reveille".
While the "Reveille" signalled the start of a Soldier's Day. the "Last Post" signalled its end.
Remembrance Day is always observed on the 11th hour of the 11th Day of November each year in some Commonwealth countries. In Labuan. it is held on a Monday closest to November 11.
Following the sombre ceremonies, wreaths of nations, relatives and friends inundated the "Cross of Sacrifice", portraying that the soldiers who sacrificed their lives in order thai others may live in peace have not been forgotten and will never be.
Labuan Corporation (LC) Chairman Datuk Suhaili Abdul Rahman. in his speech read by LC Deputy Chairman Datuk Yusof Mahal, said in poignant terms, "it is incumbent upon us lo remember always the millions who went willingly to battle in order to secure the future for us.
"But in an uncertain world today we must do more than simply remember." said Suhaili.
Among those who came for this year's Remembrance Day was one of the few survivors of the war who served in Labuan. Keith Albert Froebel (VX 125604) from Australia was in 2/12 Australian Calvary Commando Squadron. On June 10. 1945, he was in section of the Australian 9th Division that landed in Labuan and subsequently led to
the liberation of Borneo from the Japanese Imperial Forces.
The other from Australia was Terry Gulliver, to remember his father. Squadron Leader Keith Gilliver of 93 Squadron RAAF, who died in an aircraft accident in Lahuan in 1945.
A total of 34 wreaths were laid, with five at the Indian Section of the Memorial.
Among the foreign representatives who laid wreaths were Shri Nagendra K Saxeva, the Deputy High Commissioner of India in Malaysia, Ll Commander Martin Davis '(Deputy Defence Advisor), in the British High Commission, Lt. Col. Clark Smith representing the Australian High Commissioner. Phil Myhre representing New Zealand High Commissioner and John Saville. the British High Commissioner in Brunei.
Later. LC hosted a luncheon for the dignitaries and guests.
Remembrance Day has been celebrated for a number of years officially after it was incorporated in the Calendar of Events of the Labuan Tourism Action Council.