Military collection a 'solid link' to the Anzacs
This Anzac Day will be a special occasion for Launceston-born Australian Defence Force Major Stephen Cassidy.
Major Cassidy attended Glen Dhu Primary School and Kings Meadows High School. He worked at Coles and the Tool Annex before joining the Army in 1986.
He rose through the ranks from Trooper, Corporal, Sergeant and Warrant Officer prior to commissioning and now holds the rank of Major. During his career, he has served in conflicts in Sinai, Iraq, Afghanistan, and with the UN in South Sudan.
This Anzac Day, Major Cassidy will attend the Dawn Service at Evandale, where three generations of Cassidy family members are commemorated on the memorial.
In 2008, Major Cassidy began donating a range of military items to the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, including uniforms, maps, diaries, postcards, posters, booklets and art work.
Launceston-born Australian Defence Force Major Stephen Cassidy. Image: QVMAG
Ahead of Anzac Day, Major Cassidy will today visit the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery at Inveresk to revisit some of the items he has donated over the years.
'I hope what people gain from these items is perspective,' Major Cassidy said.
'When we think about Anzac Day, we tend to immediately cast our memories back to World War One and World War Two, and it can be easy to lose sight of other conflicts.
'These items are a solid link between the terrible, but memorable conflicts of WWI and WWII, to the contemporary military deployments of Iraq and Afghanistan.'
Senior Curator of Public History Jon Addison. Image: QVMAG
QVMAG Senior Curator of Public History Jon Addison said Major Cassidy's donations had provided a huge range of items.
'It's been a continuous, ongoing collection, all relating to one living man,' Mr Addison said.
Major Cassidy's contribution is built on the bedrock of several generations of service from:
- William Robert Cassidy — Boer War
- Edwin Cassidy - WWI - 12 Bn — Gallipoli
- Harold Cassidy - WWI and WWII - 12 Bn — Gallipoli
- John Cassidy - WW I - NZ Army — Gallipoli
- Max Cassidy - WWII - RAAF — killed in training accident Canada.
- Edwin Cassidy - 2/12 Bn — Rat of Tobruk
- Ron Cassidy - 12/40 Bn — POW - Changi - Thai Burma Railway
- Andrew Cassidy — Timor / Afghanistan