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Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,492
Registered: ‎04-19-2010

Rememberance Day

[ Edited ]

This is what WWI looked like for both sides—fighting and living in a toxic soup of mud, human waste, and garbage from having to live for months in trenches. More died from disease than bullets. Many nations lost so many of their young men that spinster aunts abounded because too few marriageable men came home. 

 

Today I would like to honor my Great Uncle, a teenage immigrant who within a few years of living in the US served in his new country’s army in WWI. While fighting in France he was gassed with the chemical warfare concoction Mustard Gas. He came home ill in body and soul, suffering what we now call PTSD. I honor him and all who have sacrificed so much. We may now call it Veterans Day, but Rememberance Day was the original and most meaningful to me. Please join me in taking a moment to reflect on our blessings, the legacy of those who serve.

 

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Honored Contributor
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Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Rememberance Day

As I understand it Remembrance day is not a US holiday but one in the U. S .Armistice Day in was the original name of Veterans Day in the US

 

 

Remembrance Day (sometimes known informally as Poppy Day) is a memorial day observed in Commonwealth of Nations member states since the end of the First World War to remember the members of their armed forces who have died in the line of duty. Following a tradition inaugurated by King George V in 1919,[1] the day is also marked by war remembrances in many non-Commonwealth countries. Remembrance Day is observed on 11 November in most countries to recall the end of hostilities of World War I on that date in 1918. Hostilities formally ended "at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month", in accordance with the armistice signed by representatives of Germany and the Entente between 5:12 and 5:20 that morning. ("At the 11th hour" refers to the passing of the 11th hour, or 11:00 am.) The First World War officially ended with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on 28 June 1919.[2]

 
Stop being afraid of what could go wrong and start being positive what could go right.
Honored Contributor
Posts: 9,110
Registered: ‎11-08-2014

Re: Rememberance Day

What a beautiful tribute to your great-uncle and the others, @SunValley.  This 100th anniversary of the Armistice has, one hopes, raised awareness of the great sacrifice you reference, and lives lost and changed forever, by "the Great War".

 

"In Flanders Feilds, the poppies blow..."

 

https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/flanders-fields

Regular Contributor
Posts: 156
Registered: ‎04-24-2010

Re: Rememberance Day

Thank you @SunValley for your honest and heartfelt tribute to your great uncle. Too often war is romanticized with trite cliches and fake patriotic phrases. The reality of war is hell, the devastation is widespread and complete for all sides and the young men and women who courageously step up to serve, deserve sober and informed leaders who understand the awesome ramifications of their decisions.

 

My beloved father was a medic in WW2 and received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star for heroism at the battle of Saipan. He was ahead of his time and had a deep understanding and compassion for the human condition. He shared some stories at the end of his life which moved me so much. I remember him at age 93 sitting in his recliner with tears in his eyes saying, “ You know, those young Japanese kids screamed in agony as they lay dying in the mud and cried out for their mothers just like our boys did. They weren’t responsible for their Emperor’s actions. Most of them were from rural mountainous areas and didn’t even know why they were there. I was wounded by them but I never hated them. They were just like us, scared, exhausted and wondering if the nightmare would ever end.”

Honored Contributor
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Registered: ‎06-27-2010

Re: Rememberance Day

 

            Thank you, @SunValley and @nevergivesup, for your profound and poignant tributes.❤️

 

⭐️"Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy.” ~H.W. Newton⭐️


Honored Contributor
Posts: 16,058
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Rememberance Day

WW1, whose beginning was a result of entangled alliances, was the war to end all wars. The naivety in that description was more than matched by the idealism of soldiers going bravely into battle. How could they know the horrors that waited them? Thank goodness that the heinous effects of chemical weapons led to a ban on its employment, although its usage still occurs.

 

It's a tragic but less known story than WWII, but its lessons should be remembered by all. There are several outstandin WW1 novels that give more than a glimpse into what the soldiers and others endured.

 

On Veterans' Day I will think of them along with all the veterans of all the wars.


~Who in the world am I? Ah, that's the great puzzle~ Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,492
Registered: ‎04-19-2010

Re: Rememberance Day


@nevergivesup wrote:

Thank you @SunValley for your honest and heartfelt tribute to your great uncle. Too often war is romanticized with trite cliches and fake patriotic phrases. The reality of war is hell, the devastation is widespread and complete for all sides and the young men and women who courageously step up to serve, deserve sober and informed leaders who understand the awesome ramifications of their decisions.

 

My beloved father was a medic in WW2 and received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star for heroism at the battle of Saipan. He was ahead of his time and had a deep understanding and compassion for the human condition. He shared some stories at the end of his life which moved me so much. I remember him at age 93 sitting in his recliner with tears in his eyes saying, “ You know, those young Japanese kids screamed in agony as they lay dying in the mud and cried out for their mothers just like our boys did. They weren’t responsible for their Emperor’s actions. Most of them were from rural mountainous areas and didn’t even know why they were there. I was wounded by them but I never hated them. They were just like us, scared, exhausted and wondering if the nightmare would ever end.”


@nevergivesup One of my mother’s brothers was shot by the Japanese. He never harbored any ill will against them either. He had the same experience as your father—a lot of young men who were mystified about why they were there. To see so much horror and be able to come home and be good husbands and fathers and build the infrastructure of this nation is a tribute to their resilience and decency.

Respected Contributor
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Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Rememberance Day

I know there was a movie made, but has anybody ever read "All Quiet on the Western Front".?  This is such a great book based on WWI.  And I wish all leaders of all nations would read it.  It's as relevant now as it was then.

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Registered: ‎05-25-2016

Re: Rememberance Day


@CLEM wrote:

I know there was a movie made, but has anybody ever read "All Quiet on the Western Front".?  This is such a great book based on WWI.  And I wish all leaders of all nations would read it.  It's as relevant now as it was then.


That was required reading when I was in high school.  It’s not a lengthy read, but it is a very important story. 

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Registered: ‎05-22-2014

Re: Rememberance Day

When I volunteered on a skilled nursing unit, I met and got to know the stories of many of the residents.  One man was extremely quiet and not talkative at all, but always struck me as a gentle soul.  One day I happened to be there when his daughter was visiting, and I was invited to join the visit.  His daughter told me her dad served in WWII and was there on D-Day.  I thanked him for his service and said it must have been a terrible experience.  Being a man of few words, his only response was “There were a lot of bodies in the water.”  I will never forget.