Albany Freemasons pay tribute to fallen veterans ahead of Anzac Day

Josiah McMeekinAlbany Advertiser
Howard Laird, Brett Jeffrey and Tony Banner carry out the ceremony.
Camera IconHoward Laird, Brett Jeffrey and Tony Banner carry out the ceremony. Credit: Supplied

The Albany Freemason Lodge paid tribute to all those who never returned from war ahead of Anzac Day with a vacant chair ceremony on Tuesday.

About 30 masons attended, as well as visitors from the RSL and broader community.

The vacant chair ceremony is a military and masonic tradition that is more than 100 years old and is usually performed in the weeks before Anzac Day or Remembrance Day in Australia.

The ceremony involves masons carrying an empty chair draped with the Australian flag and a masonic apron through the lodge, stopping at three pillars to say some words of respect for the fallen.

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The chair represents the empty place in the lodge following the non-return of a soldier from war.

Organiser Tony Banner spoke of Australia’s history of involvement in conflicts on the global stage.

“Australia has ever been ready to play its part in attempts to re-establish peace and to resist tyranny around the world,” he said.

“Many Freemasons are among those that answered the call to arms and they too are now counted amongst those who gave their all as they strived to help preserve the freedoms we now enjoy.”

Specific lights in the lodge room were lit in memory of the fallen.

The memorial to the fallen.
Camera IconThe memorial to the fallen. Credit: Supplied

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