Following the balloon release the families and their invited guests made their way into the beautiful, tranquil church of St. Martin in-the-Fields for their memorial service. This service had been planned and arranged by the British Victims’ families with help from the Vicar, the Director of Music and the other staff at St. Martin’s. The choice of music, readings, hymns, contributions of other faiths and the preacher, were deeply personal and moving, none more so than the wonderful rendition of “Swing Low Sweet Chariot” a particular tribute to the many rugby players whose lives were taken in the bombings. During the Service the 28 names of the British victims were called out and their photographs (and of some of the European and Australian victims) placed before the altar. Candles were lit and placed in front of each photograph. Later in the service, the placing of white roses signified our eternal love and wish for strength to go forward through our shared loss and grief. The theme of the Service was faith, hope and love and just being together at this unique service helped us all derive comfort and strength. The Service was for the families themselves but the Queen was represented by the Duke of |Kent, Prince Charles sent a personal message and the Government representatives were Jack Straw (Foreign Secretary), Tessa Jowell (DCMS) and Sir Michael Jay. The Indonesian Ambassador, the Australian High Commissioner and members of their staff also attended. Following the service the families and their invited friends met together In the crypt of St. Martin’s.
On the steps of Trafalgar Square at 6.00 pm – coinciding almost to the dreadful moment on 12th October 2002 when the Bali bombings took place – families, friends and survivors released 202 white helium balloons in to the clear blue twilight sky over London. One balloon for each of the victims whose life was lost on that terrible night in Bali.
1st Anniversary St Martin’s Memorial Service
Words provided by the Miller Family: