Also read: Anzac Day services in London and around the UK
Anzac Day at Gallipoli, Turkey
At Anzac Cove in Turkey, Veterans’ Affairs Minister Warren Snowdon said the Anzacs could never have known the enduring legacy of their courage, service and sacrifice.
“It behoves us to accept the responsibility to do whatever we can to avoid war and find peaceful resolution to our differences,” he said.
“This is how we can honour them.”
Prime Minister commemorates Anzac Day in Korea
Prime Minister Julia Gillard honoured Australia’s Korean War veterans at a stirring dawn service in Seoul where she said silence spoke loudest on Anzac Day.
“In our silence today we remember those we have lost,” Ms Gillard said in the 60th anniversary year of the battle of Kapyong, one of Australia’s major engagements of the campaign.
“Each of them one of us; each of them lost to us now.
“Each in essence an ordinary Australian who we asked to do an extraordinary thing.”
Kevin Rudd remembers Anzac Day in France
In Villers-Bretonneux, France, scene of a critical Australia victory in World War One, Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd said: “We come to honour the values for which they fought – for freedom, for a fair go for all, values which we hold to be true for all humankind, not just for some.
“The cost of all this, quite literally, almost bled our fledging nation dry.”
Anzac Day around Australia
At the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, RAAF chaplain Wing Commander Mark Willis paid tribute to those who put freedom for others before their own interests.
“Just ordinary people doing their job, ordinary men and women who were prepared to make personal sacrifices for the freedom and quality of life that we enjoy today,” he said.
Delivering the commemorative address, war historian Les Carlyon said Anzac Day was all about remembering ordinary, decent Australians.
“Every grave represents someone’s son or uncle or father or husband,” he said.
“Every grave represents sacrifice in perhaps its saddest form, the death of dreams of youth.”
Anzac Day services around the country went off mostly without incident, but a 67-year-old returned serviceman collapsed and died after attending a dawn service in Darwin.
Grief and admiration united crowds on Anzac Day in Sydney, as people braved the rain to pay tribute to past and present servicemen and women.
More than 16,000 people marched through Sydney’s CBD, with Victoria Cross recipient Corporal Ben Roberts-Smith crediting the Anzac diggers with establishing Australia’s armed forces reputation.
Cpl Roberts-Smith, who was awarded the highest military honour for his service in Afghanistan in 2010, marched in the Anzac Day parade for the first time on Monday.
“Those guys gave us the reputation we have as Australian soldiers. They sacrificed a lot to give us the country we have today. To be a part of that with them is very special to me,” he told reporters at the march.
A sense of gratitude was central to the day’s services, with the dawn service bringing one spectator to tears.
After most people had left the Cenotaph in Sydney’s Martin Place, Margaret Taylor stood crying in the pouring rain.
She knew no one killed in the war but still she cried for the young Aussies who died.
“Can you imagine the horror they endured? The terror … would have been something we will hopefully never experience,” Ms Taylor told AAP.
“And we have to thank them for that.”
The commemorative mood continued throughout the march through Sydney’s CBD later in the morning.
Brothers John and David Crossley were cheering on their father, Roy, 84, who marched with the Under 16s – a group of boys who said they were older than they were so they could serve during the Second World War.
“During World War II his parents broke up and he ran away from home at 14 and joined the services,” David Crossley explained.
“He was just short of his 16th birthday while serving in Brunei when his mother found out where he was and dragged him back to Sydney.”
But less than a year later he had signed up again and ended up serving for over a thousand days during the war.
“Can you imagine spending your entire youth fighting in a war?” John Crossley asked.
Just five metres away, brothers Andrew Forsdike, 62, and Robert Ford, 67, were also honouring their family’s military history.
Mr Ford’s father-in-law, Norman Denovan, 87, marched with mine sweepers from World War II, while Mr Forsdike joined Vietnam vets from the Royal Australian Artillery.
Four generations of the family were there to witness the march.
Mr Forsdike wore a string of gleaming medals on his left breast, including an Order of Australia awarded in 2000 for his volunteer work at the Returned and Services League.
He said the day was an opportunity to see his mates, “get a kiss from the ladies” and reminisce about old times.
As the march wound up, NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell spoke at a commemoration service at the Anzac War Memorial in Sydney’s Hyde Park.
Mr O’Farrell described Australia’s connection with the events at Gallipoli as a national obsession.
“Anzac has come to occupy a central place in our national psyche,” he said.
“We need to recommit ourselves, as both citizens and a nation, to live up to the ideals for which they fought.”
He also paid tribute to the men and women currently serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.