23rd May 2023 15:01:26 Hours
The 14th anniversary of the National War Heroes’ Day alias the 'Victory Day' that pays floral tributes to the bravery of 28,619 fallen War Heroes who liberated the country from LTTE terrorism was commemorated this afternoon (May 19) in a simple, yet dignified ceremony at the Battaramulla National War Heroes’ Monument with attendance of the Commander-In-Chief of the armed forces, Hon President Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Chief Guest.
During the ceremony, cherished memories of fallen War Heroes of the Army (23,962), Navy (1,160), Air Force (443), Police (2,598) and 456 Civil Security Department personnel, who had made the supreme sacrifice in their fight against ruthless LTTE terrorism before May 2009 were respectfully remembered for their valour, gallantry, selfless dedication and invaluable sacrifices offering floral tributes.
A galaxy of dignitaries and war veterans, inclusive of clergy, beloved spouses/relatives of fallen War Heroes, Hon Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardene, Hon Speaker, Mahinda Yapa Abeywardene, Hon Opposition Leader, Sajith Premadasa, Ministers, Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, Admiral of the Fleet Wasantha Karannagoda, Marshal of the Air Force Roshan Goonetileke, State Minister of Defence, Secretary to the President, Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to the President on National Security, Secretary to Ministry of Defence, former Tri Service Commanders, General Shavendra Silva WWV RWP RSP VSV USP ndc psc MPhil, Chief of Defence Staff, Lieutenant General Vikum Liyanage RWP RSP ndu, Commander of the Army, Vice Admiral Priyantha Perera RSP USP ndu psc, Commander of the Navy, Air Marshal Sudarshana Pathirana WWV RWP RSP VSV USP ndc psc, Commander of the Air Force, Inspector General of Police, Director General of Civil Security Department, Chairman, Ranaviru Seva Authority, Tri Service veterans and Senior Officers joined together to salute the memory of those brave ones.
The 14th National War Heroes’ Day commemoration, organized this year too by the Rana Viru Seva Authority (RVSA) began sharp at 4.00 p.m. upon arrival of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Hon President Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Chief Guest, preceded by Hon Prime Minister and other distinguished invitees in succession.
This solemn ceremony, adorned with recital of the National anthem, a two-minute silence in honour of their memory, reading of the citation for bravery, religious observances, playing of ‘Rana Bera’, vigil mounting, aerial drop of flowers on the monument, etc also remembers bravery of permanently-injured War Heroes of the Tri services, Police and the Civil Security Department.
Hon President afterwards with other distinguished invitees in succession joined the representative gathering of next of kin of all fallen ones to offer floral tributes to the Monument as the climax of the day's event.
As dusk fell, the sounding of the Last Post and Reveille in accordance with military traditions culminated the formal ceremony, a feature typical during military ceremonies. (Photo courtesy : President's Media Division)