Wheelchair veterans should lead the march says veteran

By Heta Gardiner

A former soldier has called the actions to halt veterans that are wheelchair bound, from marching in the Anzac Day parade on Monday as foolish. Kingi Taurua thinks that the love and respect for our former soldiers have diminished.

A day of remembrance and respect.  But things have now gone sour.

Taurua says it's foolish and is furious at those who didn't allow wheelchair-bound veterans to march on ANZAC Day with the fellow soldiers. This veteran believes the thinking is back to front.

“There is only one right way to go about this, to have them in the front. Let the ones that can walk at the back. Let them walk behind, however slowly it goes, however long it takes to get to the destination. That is how it should be. We shouldn't be belittling these people,” says Taurua.

He also thinks that this points to a wider issue amongst RSA's.

“One of the problems with places like this, the RSA's, the people running them aren't former soldiers,” says Taurua.

Despite his angst, his thoughts are fixated on the future.

Taurua says, “I hope that in the coming months they wise up, and think about those that went to war, whose blood sweat and tears ensured the privileges we have here today.”

Attempts by Te Kāea to contact those who made the call to not allow wheelchair-bound veterans to march were unsuccessful.