If ud permit me men and woman of this forum, id just like to take 2 minuites of your time.
This is to take the oppurtunity to remember all those men and woman who have died for there country in the service of there country regardless of wether or not the cause be just or not. For that is not for us to judge. All we can do is sit here and at least pay tribute to those that paid the ultimate sacrifice for what they believed in and so be truly humbled by it and moved by the overwhelming grief of those that were left behind to bare witness to the loss of there loved ones. So i propose this thread to inform each other how your particular country remembers its fallen, and maybe post a story of a more personal nature and maybe your favourite song or literature regarding this subject.
Well i suppose i should start, the reason for me writing this thread is that today here in the UK it is rememberance sunday, this is where the whole country mourns the loss of its fallen and pays tribute to them with a nation wide 2 mins silence. The actual history of this day all started with the 1st world wars end, which was when the guns fell silent on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month 1918, as you are aware this was yesterday but we always take the closest sunday to this to perform our remembrance, and has now developed into a day of remembrance for all those that have died for our country in conflicts since, right up to present day, including the most recent fallen of a 19 year old British Soldier who was killed yesterday whilst on sentry duty in Basra.
As for a personal story, it is that of my grandfarther who served in the Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers in El Alemane with the 8th army, his job was as a 2nd line Tank Mechanic well behind the front line however the heavy fighting and tank crew losses saw the need for any one who could drive a tank to fill in the gaps and do there duty, my grandfarther was one such soldier and was asked to drive a Crusader III into battle as the crews previous driver had been badly wounded, and like many other Tank mechanics he of course agreed. On the following day during the thick of a heavy tank battle my grandfarthers Crusader was hit and he died instantly. The only thing left of him behind was a diary he had kept of his experiences, he wrote of the cost of life and insanity during battle and was moved to write these words................
When you go home, Tell them of us and say, For your tomorrow, We gave our today.
These words have actualy been taken and used on several memorials around the UK.
As for my personal favourite piece of literature it is as follows.
I have lived almost 50 years, I have seen life as it is, Pain, Misery, Hunger Cruelty beyound belief, Children left in streets like bundles of filth.
I have been a soldier, Seen my comrades fall in battle, Or die more slowly under the lash in Africa.
These are men who saw life as it is, Yet they died despairing, And as i held them in my arms at the final moment, There was no glory, no galant last words, Only there eyes filled with confusion, Wimpering the question WHY.
Yet i do not think they were asking why they were dying, But WHY they had ever lived.
I would like to dedicate this poem to a Grandfarther i never new, I love you Grandpa and think of you often, sleep well.
Thanks for reading folks i hope it wasnt to tedious.
Aye. Lest we forget...
Fortunately I don't know of any close relatives who have died in battle, the closest would be the older and only brother of my grandfather who fell in Karelia during what I think was the Continuation War, but I've never wanted to bother my grandfather with it to find out the details.
my grandfather was stationed in El Alamein too. He lost one of his kidneys through a shrapnel bomb and barely survived. He never really wanted to talk about the war. The only thing he told me, when I was 16 years old, was that war was the worst thing he had ever seen and that I should think before taking a gun and kill someone. After he died in 2002 I found pictures and a diary of him from WW2. It was so horrible to read the book and to look at those pictures at the same time, that it took me three full month to finish it. After finishing this small old looking little book I was absolutely shure, that I never wanted to see a war in my live.
Besides that, my grandfathers brother sunk in a german submarine in the northern atlantic and his sister was killed by a bomb in Cologne.
So let's all hope that we will never be forced to go to battle...
:salute:Thank you grandpa.
Knight of MarsBeater of Ass
3rd June 2006
Very nice thread.
:salute: My grandfather didnt fought in the war, My great grandfather however served in the dutch army during the war... We should Never forget why they died.