New Italy Honours First World War soldiers
THE lives of 13 young soldiers from New Italy who fought and died in the First World War will be remembered on an Honour Roll that was officially unveiled on Saturday.
Close to 100 descendants of the men travelled from all over the country to be at the unveiling.
New Italy museum management committee secretary Peter Blackwood said the Honour Roll was part of an Anzac centenary project that had been 18 months in the making.
"The project was designed to identify and then properly acknowledge the people from the Italian families who settled here in 1882 and then went on to serve in the Australian Army in WW1," he said.
"All of that culminated on Saturday morning and we had relatives from these men from all over Australia come to the unveiling and it was a very moving ceremony.
"When we started we thought there may have been six or seven men… but with the research we did there were 13.
"Of the 13 there were two who were killed, at least seven were wounded and two were decorated for bravery."
Mr Blackwood said the Honour Roll would be on permanent display at the New Italy museum alongside large banners of each soldier, featuring their service story and, for those who made it back, what they did post-service.
"It wasn't such a surprise (to learn what they had gone through) but it was still very moving and poignant when you piece together their war service," he said.
"They're basically young fellows that were all farm labourers when they enlisted and they all ended up in front line combat units."