Every heart felt 202 times heavier, but for those bearing the greatest burden this day was as much about the future as the past.
Danny Hanley bears more pain than most.
‘‘Leave the broken, irreversible past in God’s hands, and step into an invincible future with him,’’ urged the man who lost two daughters in the Bali bombings 10 years ago on this day.
‘‘It is true we have lost loved ones that will never return. But God can transform this destructive anxiety into constructive thoughtfulness for the future,’’ he told a memorial service in a hilltop park with distant views of the Kuta nightclub strip where his daughters died with 200 others.
‘‘As we go forward into this new decade, let us go out with the patient power of knowledge that our God will go with us.’’
Mr Hanley’s daughters were virtual bookends in tragedy. Renae was at the front door of the Sari Club, which was razed by a bomb in a van parked outside, and therefore one of the first killed. His youngest daughter, Simone, was the last of 88 Australians to die after fighting for her life for 58 days in Perth Hospital’s burns unit.
Unlike Mr Hanley, Indonesian boy Made Bagus Arya Dana, 18 months old at the time of the terrorist attacks, never really knew the father he lost.
But he had a similar message about turning a new page.
‘‘I have started to understand what happened,’’ he read out loud from his ‘‘letter to Daddy’’.
‘‘I can feel mum’s sadness. I realise daddy will never be home. The tragedy has separated us forever.’’
But after years grieving, he promised: ‘‘I will end my lingering [in grief] here. I’ll gain my lost future back. I’ll make all your dreams come true. And I will take care of mum for you.’’
The message from officialdom was similar.
‘‘I know it is not easy to forget,’’ said Made Mangku Pastika, police chief at the time of the bombings and now governor of Bali.
‘‘But it is the time to forget, so we can face a brighter life in the future.’’
John Howard and Julia Gillard, Australia’s prime ministers then and now, both spoke of the strength, courage and tenderness of Australians in adversity.
Both spoke of the duty to defeat terrorism and urged young Australians to keep exploring the world unbowed by fear.
Ms Gillard called it a day of ‘‘remembrance and quiet defiance’’.
John Williamson sang his Bali-inspired song Flower on the Water, his voice resonating around the natural amphitheatre formed by towering limestone cliffs, topped by a giant carved statue of Garuda, Indonesia’s mythical bird of freedom.
Williamson’s chorus seemed to sum up the mood: ‘‘To hear you laugh, to hear you cry, or just a chance to say goodbye. To say the things we didn’t say; that would be our greatest wish today.’’
Dignitaries lit 22 candles in a lotus pool – one for each of the nations whose citizens died in the October 12, 2002, attacks. Australia’s loss of 88 was more than any other nation.
The roll call of the 202 people killed took an agonisingly long time to complete - four minutes. Or four years, depending on how you measured it. It was followed by a minute’s silence, which likewise lasted an age.