News

US President recalls sea battle

US Consul General Niels Marquardt and Commodore Geoff Geraghty lay wreaths commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea.
US Consul General Niels Marquardt and Commodore Geoff Geraghty lay wreaths commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea. Doug Eaton

AS US Consul General Niels Marquardt stood before the crowd at Cenotaph Park in Ballina, he commemorated the 70th anniversary of the Battle of The Coral Sea by reading a letter from President Barack Obama.

The letter reinforced long-term military and cultural ties between Australia and America.

"On May 7 and 8, 1942, against overwhelming odds, American and Australian forces stood united in The Coral Sea, delivering a victory that buoyed the spirits of free nations and marked an important mile- stone in the enduring friendship between the United States and Australia," the letter said.

"On this occasion we reaffirm the strong bond between our nations and honour the selfless devotion of the American and Australian service members who bravely fought in that battle 70 years ago."

After addressing the crowd on Saturday, Mr Marquardt laid a wreath at the base of the cenotaph in the park.

Federal MP Janelle Saffin, NSW MP Don Page, Ballina Shire Council Mayor Phillip Silver, armed forces personnel and ex-veterans and their families also attended the ceremony.

Gloria Lee of Alstonville was there because her father served on the HMAS Hobart during the Battle of The Coral Sea.

"It (HMAS Hobart) was hit by a torpedo but it didn't sink," Ms Lee recalled.

"My father and his mates had to pick up the remains of other people.

"Eventually he was discharged from the navy with severe back injuries and war nervosas, which is what we now call post traumatic stress disorder. And even though he had it until he died, he was so proud to be in the navy."

The Battle of the Coral Sea has often been referred to as the battle which stopped Japanese forces breaching Australian borders, Ms Lee claimed.

"It's good to have this service because it's a part of our history and the battle of the Coral Sea may have been more important than Gallipoli, yet it doesn't seem to get the recognition of Gallipoli."

Topics:  barack obama, niels marquardt




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

RVC set to disperse vulnerable flying foxes

Flying foxes head out in search of flowers and nectar.

Bats "running riot and ruining our lifestyle" says Gulaptis

Police set to break up Northern Rivers logging protest

Githabul elders are protesting over logging set to start in the Donaldson State Forest near Woodenbong. Photo: contributed

A logging protest on the Northern Rivers has attracted police.

GALLERY: Beef Week babes grace the fashion catwalk

THE Northern Star is a proud sponsor of the Casino Beef Week Fashion Parade and this year's 2016 event held at the Casino RSM was a sold out success. Local businesses and community came together to showcase fashion, music and entertainment. Up and coming fashion designers along with Casino fashion houses featured a wide range of winter clothing and accessories modelled by locals with professional hair and makeup artists adding to the glamour of the night. Performances by the talented young dancers and singers ensured the 600 guests revelled in community spirit and fashionable fun.

The lingerie section wasn't quite what the guys had in mind

Latest deals and offers

Coastal development keeps young people on Northern Rivers

Wes Bale is a 27-year-old born and bred Lennox Head local who is an example of the demographic shift in the region.

Young Northern Rivers residents are looking closer to home

We’ve found 8 rentals available on the Northern Rivers

2/22 Sunnybank Drive, Ballina

It's obvious there is a rental shortage on the Northern Rivers