This Anzac Day, Wagga man Paul Colenso is marking a significant family milestone.
During WWII four of Mr Colenso's uncles enlisted in the same battalion, fighting on the front line as the Japanese closed in on Singapore.
This year marks 80 years since two of them were killed in action during the conflict.
"Ray was killed on February 9 and Uncle Bill died a few days later," he said.
Around this time two more uncles went missing in action.
"My Uncles Ted and Frank were held as prisoners of war at Changi until the end of the war," Mr Colenso said.
He said it was a very stressful time for his grandparents.
"My grandmother didn't really know the details of the two boys who did come back until the end of the war," Mr Colenso said.
"She passed away only a couple of years after the war ended. I think after that they never allowed brothers to be in the same battalion again."
Mr Colenso said because of the circumstances, his father wasn't allowed to enlist.
"While Dad was old enough to fight by the end of the war, because his brothers were all missing in action the authorities wouldn't allow it," he said.
"That was also quite stressful, because any males left at home were not thought of particularly highly, as they were seen to be shirking their duty. So that's why Anzac Day means a lot to us."
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Mr Colenso said Anzac Day is a time to reflect on those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.
"It's a day for us to remember, in particular, all those who did not come back throughout the years," he said. "The Second World War was something that directly affected our family, but more recently there's also been a lot of action where people gave up their lives."
Before he died, Ray Colenso penned a number of poems, one of which has been published below:
Why can't the world remember,
The lessons of the years;
The horrors of each conflict,
Bringing many bitter tears
To wives and daughters left behind
Who pray for peace to reign,
So they may see their husbands
And their fathers once again.
A chap I know from Moree,
With a bonny child and wife.
He considered them worth fighting for,
And so he risked his life,
To resist the German madman,
Who wants to rule the world.
He's the type of Aussie soldier,
Who keeps our flag unfurled.
A daughter nick-named "Whiskers"
By a fond and loving Dad.
Her little heart is breaking,
And her eyes are ever sad.
She is old enough to reason,
Just why he went away,
And nightly with her mother,
For his safe return they pray.
I know he'll never weaken,
When the battle's at its height.
It's his family he's protecting,
That's why he's in the fight.
Someday the war will finish,
And he'll put away the sword.
That family's reunion
Will be his just reward.
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