Last Holidays for some
It’s sad to say this but, once again, this will be the last Holidays for a lot more veterans from World War II this year. Gone are those from the War to End All Wars, few remain from the Second World War. We witness this every Remembrance Day.
This is why we can only applaud the initiative of Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs, to call on Canadians across the country to reach out and engage with Veterans in their communities this holiday season.
His department even offers an interactive way of sending electronic postcards via its website: veterans.gc.ca
The world’s most watched television series, Downton Abbey, has brought back the memories of WWI to millions who never even thought about it. War is glorious for those who don’t suffer from them; those who actually saw real combat, comrades falling or maimed forever, have a different view of the whole thing, the whole bloody thing.
Comrades we say, but for them, young as they were, they were friends. And as teenagers, most were lest we not forget, they acted like kids their age. I was reminded once again of this watching a documentary a couple of days ago. Those white haired ladies talking to the camera were also the homely young women in the photographs illustrating what they were doing during the last war. Short dresses and bathing suits. Photographed in the latter to send to a boyfriend on the front.
But we don’t see them like this; they are old men and women now, grandparents when not great-grandparents, not youngsters having fun, telling jokes, flirting, being madly in love. They knew that luck would be on their side, as most teenagers do, when they act crazy. Then and today.
When sound recording came to life, truly for World War Two, then came the Christmas songs. Top of the list was “I’ll be home for Christmas”, sung by Bing Crosby and then by hundreds of others. Yes, they were coming home for the Holidays, you could count on them. A lot did, but only in their dreams, never to kiss that girl in the bathing suit under the mistletoe.
More reasons to remember that those who served must be remembered not only in November, but year round.
For us here at the Stanstead Journal, we’ll be back in early January. Thanks to your support we can look forward to 2014 brightly. Proof was our subscription contest that broke all dreams we may have had, twice as many participants as expected. So, on my behalf and those of Victoria, Mylène, Tania, Tracey and Brian, our best wishes for the Holidays and the most marvellous New Year.