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Condolences To Family Of Last Gallipoli Veteran

23 May 2002

Minister Extends Condolences To The Family Of The Last Gallipoli Veteran

Veterans' Affairs Minister Mark Burton today extended his condolences on behalf of the New Zealand veteran community to the family of Mr Alec Campbell, the last Anzac survivor of the Gallipoli campaign, who died in Tasmania last week aged 103 years.

Mark Burton paid tribute to Mr Campbell who was born in Launceston Tasmania in 1899 and who enlisted in the Army, aged just 16 years. Mr Campbell landed at Gallipoli with the 15th Battalion on November 2, 1915 and for the next three months braved heavy fire to carry water and ammunition to the forward trenches.

After the war Mr Campbell worked as a jackaroo and as a carpenter. He later returned to Tasmania and worked for the Railways and became President of the Australian Workers Union (Tasmania).

During World War II, Mr Campbell worked with the Department of Labour and National Service, helping disabled servicemen. He was a keen yachtsman, crewing in six Sydney to Hobart races and sailing around Tasmania.

"After serving in Gallipoli, Alec Campbell led a full and active life, which epitomised the very essence of the strength and fortitude that we attribute to the true Anzacs", Mark Burton said.

"Mr Campbell was the last known veteran of the tragic and costly Gallipoli campaign that had such a tremendous impact on both Australia and New Zealand; his death reminds us all of the debt we owe to our veterans for their service."

Mr Campbell, who is survived by his second wife Kathleen, nine children, thirty grandchildren, fifteen great grand children and two great-great grandchildren, will be accorded a state funeral in Tasmania on Friday (24 May).

New Zealand's High Commissioner to Australia, Simon Murdoch, the Defence Attache, Brigadier Lou Gardiner and David Cox, President of the Royal New Zealand Returned Services’ Association, will represent New Zealand at the funeral service.


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