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Vincent Lingiari

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The people of the Aboriginal tribe Gurindji didn’t have the same rights as normal white people. These people were working in the Northern Territory at cattle stations. A guy called Vincent Lingiari had been working at the cattle station since he was 12.

 

He never learned to read or write. English wasn’t his first language. He was the elder of the Gurindji people and Vincent Lingiari stood up for what was right. Vincent Lingiari lead 200 Gurindji people to protest to get their land back. But the strike was unsuccessful. But soon support came from all over Australia.

 

Pretty soon Vincent Lingiari requested that 500 square miles would be returned to the Gurindji people. He also requested that a school would be built, clean water and electricity. But this request was denied by the government.

 

9 years later a new Prime Minister was elected and gave a speech to congratulate the Gurindji people for their victory of protesting for 9 years. The name of the Prime minister was Gough Whitlam. He used this issue as part of his campaign.

 

When they handed the land back to the Gurindji people Whitlam picked up a bit of the earth and sprinkled it in Vincent Lingiari. He then replied “Were all mates now.”

So that was the story of Vincent Lingiari and the Gurindji people taking back their land. This happened in the 1960s.

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Bills last day

My horse is breathing on me hard. I knew how he felt. I could read his emotions. His deep black eyes were looking down at me. I whisper to my horse. “I guess this is goodbye. I was told I could go home to my loved ones. I wish I could bring you but I can’t. Goodbye, Bill.”

I scratch him one last time before walking away.  The horse just stands there. I feel bad but I turn away and start walking towards the boat. I get on the boat and look at Bill. The horse stands there and then starts galloping towards me. I think I know what it is trying to do.

It is trying to get on the boat to go home with me. Soldiers aim guns at the horse. Its deep black eyes look at me. Poor thing. Must be sad. The horse grunts and stands there. Then it runs again and jumps. The soldiers aim their guns and fire. They all do except me. The horse falls to the ground and blood is spilling on the soil.

We start travelling back to Australia. When we get there I meet my loved ones. But one of my loved ones is missing. Bill. But one day I will see Bill again. At the memorial. I will never forget how we first met. I will never forget how we fought together and most importantly, I will never forget how he died. But hopefully Bill is in a better place now.

This story was for the light horseman who died in WW1. But most importantly, the horses.