The Australian Embassy in Washington D.C. honors the troops which have fought side by side through so many wars. Now the two countries are closer than ever in war and security. We are truly mates!
On a recent Friday night, about 140 Servicemen and their families gathered at the Embassy where Australia hosted a dinner in honor of more than 30 US wounded warriors. They were greeted by an Aborigine diplomat playing the didgeridoo and other native instruments. Later he gave music lessons to the children. The crowd also enjoyed a rock band in the balcony. The most dramatic moments came at the end. A strong, burly US Marine Colonel played his emotional composition on the grand piano. Colonel T. Shane Tomko, or "Rhino" is the Commanding Officer of the US Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Regiment at Quantico. He is concert quality and should make the rounds of the television shows.
The event was organized by Australian Lieutenant Colonel Phillip Hills and Mrs Susan Cantwell. Short speeches were given by Ambassador Kim Beazley (a very popular Ambassador), former US official Paul Wolfowitz, and Kurdish leader Barham A. Salih. He vowed to invite the troops back to a peaceful Kurdistan one day.
The Embassy and other sponsors offered a lavish dinner buffet. Then many of the warriors and their families were bused back to Walter Reed Hospital.
This is one of the many events in the nations which show the warriors they are not forgotten and their services are still needed in these dangerous times.