Petty Officer Don Blackley is in France as part of a small contingent of Australia’s Federation Guard, supporting commemoration activities marking the 70th anniversary of D-Day, the Allied landing on June 6, 1944, which marked the beginning of the end of the Nazi occupation of western Europe.“I was really proud and honoured when selected for this task. Originally, I was hoping for Anzac Day tasking, but when I found out I was going on this job, I felt very proud to be part of a massive international commemoration,” Petty Officer Blackley said.“Also, being the first RAN member to act as flag bearer during the Eternal Flame Ceremony at such a historic location is just icing on the cake.”The Eternal Flame Ceremony is a time-honoured tradition in Paris. Every evening at 6.30 the flame is rekindled, and veterans lay wreaths decorated with red, white and blue near the flickering flame. It burns in the darkness to recall the sacrifice of an unknown French soldier who gave his life during World War I.Australia’s Federation Guard is accompanying a group of Australian World War II veterans, all who flew Royal Air Force combat missions in support of the D-Day campaign.“It was definitely breathtaking to stand there with the Australian National Flag in my hands and have Australian and French veterans lined up on either side – it was really was great to be part of something like that,” Petty Officer Blackley said.The Federation Guard, veterans, members of Australia’s military Attaché in France and staff from the Department of Veterans Affairs will attend the official commemoration ceremony in Normandy on June 6. Smaller ceremonies will also be held at Ellon Airfield as well as in Villers Bretonneux, during which the veterans and Prime Minister Tony Abbott will lay wreaths.[mappress]Press Release, June 06, 2014; Image: Australian Navy For the first time in history a member of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) has actively participated in the Eternal Flame Ceremony, which is conducted every evening beneath the world-renowned Arc De Triomphe in Paris. View post tag: Flame Back to overview,Home naval-today Australian Navy Member Part of Eternal Flame Ceremony View post tag: France June 6, 2014 Authorities View post tag: member View post tag: Naval View post tag: europe View post tag: News by topic View post tag: part View post tag: Eternal View post tag: Ceremony Australian Navy Member Part of Eternal Flame Ceremony View post tag: Australian Navy View post tag: Navy Share this article
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York An Aquebogue man has been convicted of driving drunk and causing a crash that killed a 56-year-old Middle Island woman who was delivering newspapers in Hampton Bays last year.A Suffolk County jury found Joseph Perez guilty Tuesday of vehicular homicide and vehicular manslaughter.Authorities have said that the 31-year-old man was driving his Ford pickup truck westbound on Montauk Highway when he crashed into a parked car and then the victim’s car in January 2014.The victim, Donna Sartori, was pronounced dead at the scene.Perez is scheduled to be sentenced June 25 before Judge Fernando Comacho.