Sunday, 10 November 2013

Remembrance

No, it's not an incredibly thin dalek goosing Mona Davies
It's Merion Ellis flexing his walking stick
The villagers at the War memorial 
Remembrance Sunday always has a tendency to make me feel just a tad melancholy
It's not that the fallen that give me cause to reflect
It is the increasingly small band of those who are left, that leave me feeling just that little bit hollow.
Today a few hardy souls gathered around the village memorial to pay their respects to the six Trelawnyd men that were killed in two world wars.
In a few years time there will be no one around to salute the fallen. the baby boomers like me, are perhaps the last who heard of the war first hand from those that experienced the horrors of it, after we are gone, so are the links with a time that shaped the modern world.
The " new " conflicts of recent years will then be the conflicts of old men's conversations.

I took Winifred with me, as I thought a Churchill-esque presence would be appropriate.Strange that Winifred's former name was a totally inappropriate " Poppy" ...inappropriate for her...appropriate for the day......

36 comments:

  1. We watched on TV; England in glorious sunshine, France in the driving rain.

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  2. in this country, we have 1000 WWII veterans dying every day. my father was 18, drafted after grade 12 into the army, and sent to italy. he never talked about it.

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  3. My great uncle was in WWII and used to tell me all sorts of fascinating stories when he was alive. I miss those stories sometimes...

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  4. Very nicely written, John.

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  5. Winifred was a classy addition to this small group with their worthy purpose.

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  6. We had the same small ceremony here in Leyburn - as you say the number of folk still alive who remember it get fewer each year John.

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  7. I like seeing today come round and the red poppy in so many side bars.I like seeing the old men selling red poppies, donate "whatever you like, dear" to their lodge. I like our own November 11th, my dad telling the story again of the 11 hour of the 11 day of the 11 month, the war to end all wars.
    As long as there was a Gallipolis, Vietnam, Iraq, we will remember.

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  8. I'm off to the memorial service in Castelnau tomorrow. It is outside, with the memorial overlooking the flatlands of the river Adour flood plains. But the villagers involve the children during the service, by several of the youngsters each saying a portion of the list of names of the fallen during both wars. The age of the people gathering at the memorial also ranges from young families to the older generation, so I think that our village does do its best for their war dead. I am greatly moved by the little service, even though I can't understand what is being said!

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  9. I haven't seen hardly any poppies for sale this year. During the second World war my Mum's Uncle Ronnie aged 16 was shot in the back of the head by 'friendly' fire. I will think of him tomorrow even thought I never knew him.

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  10. Strangely, 'ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) Day' down here in the antipodes is actually growing - by that I mean more and more people are attending the dawn services each year. It's 25 April - and originally was in remembrance of Gallipoli, but has been extended to include honouring ALL people of Australia and NZ who have died in any war/ conflict.

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  11. Hubby told me this morning that they are not allowed to wear poppies at work in case they offend anyone by them. I find that kind of attitude apalling as the kind of person who will be offended by a poppy will be generally offended by a police uniform I think! Today we have a nation of leaders who have no b*lls.xxx

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  12. I just laughed out loud (lol) about your Dalek caption.

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  13. I bow to the fallen men of Trelawnyd. At the going down of the sun and in the morning we shall remember them.

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  14. Yup, ANZAC Day is alive and well. It is also a National holiday, and I think that helps. But ROger McGough said it well many years ago:

    At the going down of the sun, and in the morning,
    I try to remember them,
    But their names are ordinary names,
    And their causes are thighbones,
    Tugged excitedly from the soil,
    By french children,
    On picnics.

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  15. Ah well my dad was a military man through & through. He died this day many years ago. RIP dad with those brave and dedicated like yourself.

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  16. I feel lucky to have heard the stories of WWII from those who lived them. Sad to think how much of a sense of "group sacrifice for a shared purpose" has been lost, at least in this country. If our current wars affected the entire nation the way that one did, we would have already found a way to end them.

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  17. It also struck me today that, being the eldest in the family, I would be the only person thinking of the relatives I had been told about who died in the World Wars. It has inspired me to write things down before it's too late.

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  18. My Dad is 97 years old. He spent three years in London during WW2. He is still not comfortable talking or participating in any Remembrance Day ceremonies. I respect that. Maybe it is best to leave this tragic and horrifying time in the past as seems to be happening here too John by the younger generation, and focus on the present world events that need attention to prevent any ww3 from taking place.

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  19. I work in our local primary school. We do teach our children about WWII. We also have our remembrance assembly where poppies are placed around the, in school, memorial to past pupils who were lost in the wars.
    I'm also impressed with many of my younger (in their 20's) friends who are respectful and wear their poppies. Perhaps it's not as bleak as it seems with the following generations.

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  20. The cenotaph in our neighbourhood sits lonely and unvisited most of the year in a lovely green park with enormous chestnut trees. Last year stone carvers added Afghanistan to the list of wars and "conflicts". On November 11 each year rain or shine hundreds of people of all ages come to stand vigil. Canada is a land of immigrants and it is moving to see people from all over the globe and of all religions come together so respectfully. Each year I feel such an aura of goodness and hope as we all stand silently together.
    Don't know how to change the unknown to Jocelyn! Your blog gives me joy most days. Thank you.

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    1. Nice to have you aboard Jocelyn x

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  21. Always a poignant day as LH lost a few comrades during a different conflict and due to politics could never appear at remembrance services :-(

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  22. I know exactly what you mean, John. Now that history is practically non existent in schools, no one will know.
    I emailed a local newspaper about microfiche archives. They told me everything from 1999 on was digital. They remembered microfiche, but hadn't used any in years and had no idea what condition it might be in.
    Just goes to show that if it didn't happen in the last 20 years, it's not real. Sad, I agree, John.

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  23. We two veterans will remember tomorrow...my many family veterans who never came home, and our friends who lost their lives more recently.
    Jane x

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  24. I lost an uncle in the 2nd world war. His boat was torpedoed from out under him. I obviously never met him as I was born in the 60's but it left a mark on our family that he never came home. So I'll always remember.

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  25. Those few hardly souls, a reminder that we can never forgot those who passed before them . And now, we will not forgot our young people who are heroes in the conflicts that still beleaguer our fragile planet.

    In respectful silence.

    Gary

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  26. As Katherine says ANZAC Day draws bigger numbers every year here which is great to see..We remember all wars fought by Aussies and New Zealanders on that day. The poppies are such a great symbol, my grandfather used to grow them in his garden but they are not grown anywhere else here. I don't know why.

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  27. We must take it upon ourselves to educate youngsters. I quite often tell my children stories about my father and his service in The Army Air Corps.

    Love,
    Janie

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  28. Having helped bury too many fallen comrades, this day is always one of reflection for me.

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    1. Ain't that the truth tom x

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  29. We must always remember and honor those brave souls. Too many, too many.

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  30. Three of my sons ( ages 6 , 8 and 10 ) went to the local Rememberance Parade. They went in their Cubs/Beavers uniforms. It was a good turn out. Hopefully as the older ones pass this will still be upheld by the younger generation. My sons were very proud to be taking part and I was very proud if them.

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  33. We went to The Boy and The Cat's school service even though they are no longer there...it's easy to forget that the soldiers of the past were just as real as the soldiers that have died in more recent times...

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  34. I always feel melancholy on Remembrance/Veterans Day, and i think on my father's generation. Nearly every man i knew from his generation was a veteran. I also give thanks to other veterans i've known and i think of the stories my grandmother used to tell about rationing and doing one could to support the effort.

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