Walking motives that are beyond fitness
One of the main questions I ask myself is what are people’s motives for hiking. Many say it is for fitness, but for those who complete the World War One Challenge held by Elite Executive Events, it is much more than that. When you have 32 hours of walking, your mind wanders, and you get to talking with a lot of great people who stand and walk with you. We may be living in 2018 but sometimes it is essential to look back on the sacrifices made by others. That is why many walk, but for some, it is much more personal. For some people, the brick is a name of a man that they wish to honour but never knew. But for some, it holds more personal meaning which for Pop is precisely what happened. His name is Frederick Charles Boden, and the connection to Pop was Judi who is an old school friend. Boden is Judi’s Great Uncle, and both Pop and Judi still have links to the army today. This event was not the first time Pop has completed the trek, nor carried a brick for someone’s relative.
Fredrick Charles Boden was from Cairns. Boden was a Clerk and decided to enlist in the army on 2 September 1916 to embark on his journey at the age of 24. He worked his way up through the ranks and enrolled as a private and was put with the unit 5th Light Horse Regiment, 13th Reinforcement. He had no previous military experience so it can be assumed that he did not know what he would face in the next 3 years. Boden’s unit embarked from Brisbane on board the HMAT A555 Kyarra on 3 January 1916. Through the years he became a Gunner for the 13th Field Artillery Brigade. He sadly passed on the 8 November 1918 due to Broncho-pneumonia which was caused by gas on the field. He was 27 when he passed away. While Boden sadly passed, he is considered one of the lucky ones as he was identified. He is buried in France at the Etretat Churchyard Extension (Plot III, Row D, Grave No. 7). Boden is now on the honour roll, and he is placed at panel 17. If you would like more information on Boden head to either https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/P10678647 or https://www.aif.adfa.edu.au/showPerson?pid=25909.
The World War One Challenge is significant to many people across Queensland as it aims to honour the sacrifice of the fallen Queensland soliders. This is why many feel so emotional about the walk. The army has a connection with mateship and sacrifice, and that is what the walk aims to stand for. The trek is not a race, it is about making sure no one is left behind. There will be a wall built by either the end of this year or the start of the next to commemorate all the Queensland soldiers who passed on the field. This unveiling will be significant for many as each brick was carried on either a challenge or a stomp. But, it is also important to build a strong foundation to remember them forever.