Bryce pays respect to fallen heros

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday 24th April 2013

 AUSTRALIAN Governor-General Quentin Bryce laid a flower at the grave of the first Australian soldier killed in World War I during her state visit to Papua New Guinea yesterday.

Bryce paused at the grave of W.G.V. Williams at Bitapaka war cemetery in Rabaul, the second day of her visit. 

Seaman Williams died on Sept 11, 1914, following a skirmish with the Germans on the site where the cemetery is now located. 

Bitapaka is the final resting place of more than 400 Australians killed in two world wars. 

Bryce also laid a wreath at a memorial to members of Lark force who died in East New Britain and on the Montevideo Maru. 

The sinking of the Japanese transport ship almost 71 years ago carrying prisoners of war and civilians from Rabaul is considered Australia’s worst wartime maritime disaster.