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Photographs supplied by Graeme Saunders

The Animal Heroes Memorial commemorates the services of animals who have served in war and the sacrifices they have made. The memorial, the brainchild of Currumbin RSL, has been jointly funded by Gold Coast City Council, Anzac Day Commemorative Committee, Currumbin RSL and community support. The tribute includes a statue and interpretive plaque that will educate the public and recognise the service and camaraderie by some remarkable species. The first statue is a magnificent replica of a German Shepherd dog with his paw lifted in salute in a tribute to all war animals.

Animals have played important supporting roles for Australians on the battlefields. They've helped the troops, acted as mascots and simply provided comfort and friendship. These army dogs helped sniff out the enemy and explosives, as well as find fallen soldiers. They even had special masks to protect them from poison gas attacks. Dogs were also great messengers; they could use their incredible hearing skills to warn troops when the enemy was approaching.

But dogs weren't the only animals that helped out soldiers. More than 136,000 Australian horses were sent to World War One to carry big packs of food and ammunition. But only one came home and that was Sandy and he's remembered at the Australian War Memorial. Mules and camels were also used to travel long distances in tough conditions, because they didn't need much water.

Communication was pretty limited during war, so carrier pigeons were the fastest way of communication. Tens of thousands of them travelled long distances, sometimes wounded, to deliver messages to troops. They were pretty successful in getting the messages across, with most of them reaching their destinations. Their actions helped save thousands of lives, which made them the first animals to receive war medals. The Dickin Medal honours the work of animals in war. It's like the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross, which is the highest bravery award for people. Deedee received a Dickin Medal, after flying through a tropical storm to send a message about a sinking ship. The boat and the men were saved and Deedee was awarded the medal after the Second World War.


Address:945 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach Parklands, Palm Beach, 4221
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -28.127346
Long: 153.477305
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Culture


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 6th October, 2013
Front Inscription

Animals in War

This monument is dedicated to all animals that served and died alongside Australian, New Zealand and Allied forces in all wars and conflicts in pursuit of world peace and freedom of mankind.

Their contribution must never be forgotten.

May the Lord bless them all as they had no choice.


Animal Heroes

Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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