THE devastating earthquake that hit Christchurch at 12.51pm on February 22 2011 was remembered at events over the city.
A civic memorial service was held in Latimer Square, which was used as a makeshift triage centre on the day.
Prime Minister John Key said February 22 will always be a poignant day.
“I know this is a difficult day for you,” he said to those affected.
“Your grief is still raw and only time can help to numb the pain of your loss. This city and this country continue to feel for you.”
A minute’s silence was held, with Red Cross volunteers handing out tissues to those in need.
Christchurch mayor Bob Parker spoke of the great sense of loss that will “live with us for ever”, APNZ reported.
Households, schools and workplaces all paused to pay their respects, and street cones were filled with flowers to remember the 185 people killed.
The two-year anniversary was a way for people look to look forward and reflect on how far the city had come, Mr Key said, who also paid tribute to the “strength and resolve of Cantabrians”.
“In the face of it you’ve shown great heart and resilience. You have prevailed.”