Yarloop rises from the ashes for Anzac Day dawn service

Headshot of Liam Croy
Liam CroyThe West Australian
The Anzac Day dawn service in Yarloop.
Camera IconThe Anzac Day dawn service in Yarloop. Credit: Zac Relph

About 1000 people turned out to Yarloop for a moving dawn service three months after much of the town was destroyed by fire.

The local volunteer bushfire brigade has managed the war memorial and organised the service since 1985.

It rained heavily throughout the service for the first time in those 16 years but no one left early.

Some had very little protection but they were seemingly unperturbed by the pouring rain.

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The crowd - roughly double the population of the town itself - was easily the biggest in recent memory.

Belgian War Graves Office chief Didier Pontzeele made the trip to Yarloop from Belgium and brought with him pebbles from the grave of a soldier whose named is inscribed on the Yarloop memorial.

He presented them to Les Liddington, a local veteran who served with the SAS in Vietnam.

The memorial was in fantastic condition after the community pulled together to refurbish it in time for Anzac Day.

But the ruins of homes merely 50m away were a powerful reminder of how much the town has suffered.

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