Lest we for­get

Winnipeg Free Press - - OUR VIEW YOUR SAY -

I al­ways re­mem­ber the fol­low­ing dur­ing Re­mem­brance Day.

We had a very close friend of our fam­ily who was a U.S. sol­dier who fought against the Ja­panese in the Sec­ond World War.

His name was Bob, and he very sel­dom talked about the war. He also be­came an al­co­holic be­cause of the war. On one oc­ca­sion, he seemed to want to un­bur­den his con­science and share some­thing hor­rific that had hap­pened to him dur­ing the war.

He was on a pa­trol where the sol­diers were 100 yards away from each other, so that if a bomb went off, only a few would be killed or in­jured. He heard a buzzing by his ear and fell to the ground to play dead. He prayed that the en­emy sol­dier wouldn’t come out of his cover to check on him. How­ever, his prayers were not an­swered. He also told us that when­ever you could dur­ing the war, you would put as many weapons on your per­son as pos­si­ble. He luck­ily had a shoul­der pis­tol un­der his arm and slowly reached for it as the Ja­panese sol­dier ap­proached. When the en­emy sol­dier was close enough, Bob fired and the bul­let found its tar­get.

At this point in the story, Bob be­came very emo­tional and wept un­con­trol­lably. He kept say­ing that the Ja­panese sol­dier wouldn’t fall down. He kept re­peat­ing, “I had to shoot him again! I had to shoot him again!”

I re­mem­ber this story ev­ery Re­mem­brance Day, and think of the pain and suf­fer­ing all sol­diers must ex­pe­ri­ence when fac­ing the hor­rors of war.


Nov. 11 is not only to re­mem­ber the end of the First World War. It is a trib­ute to all vic­tims of both World Wars in the 20th cen­tury.

Year af­ter year, I read the commentaries and I no­tice that they do not give any credit to the enor­mous sac­ri­fices of the Soviet Union, whose armies crushed the pow­er­ful Ger­man forces. His­to­ri­ans agree that the de­feat of the Nazi empire started when the Rus­sians de­stroyed the Sixth Ger­man Army at Stal­in­grad. Rus­sia had hun­dreds of ci­ties in to­tal ruin, plus mil­lions of mil­i­tary and civil­ian ca­su­al­ties.

The in­va­sion of Nor­mandy in 1944 was not enough to de­feat Hitler; it was nec­es­sary for the Sovi­ets to ad­vance un­til they cap­tured Ber­lin. That was the be­gin­ning of the end for the Nazis, and it is im­por­tant to re­port this truth to the younger gen­er­a­tion.

FRAN­CISCO VALEN­ZUELA Win­nipeg this ter­ri­ble dis­ease eats away at their body and mind over a pro­longed pe­riod, not to men­tion the toll on the fam­ily?

Oth­er­wise, he would know that no other health-care in­sti­tu­tion in this prov­ince pro­vides bet­ter ser­vice, true con­cern, height­ened ef­fec­tive­ness and on­go­ing sup­port for their pa­tients, than the doc­tors, nurses, ad­min­is­tra­tive staff at Cancer­Care. Plus it of­fers more value for our tax dol­lar than most other is­sues or sub­jects (es­pe­cially foot­ball play­ers).

Pal­lis­ter is now turn­ing loose the con­sul­tants to try to find the mil­lions of dol­lars the NDP must have squir­relled away in Cancer­Care, pre­vent­ing him from achiev­ing his sur­plus. The goal at Cancer­Care will likely be the same as Gor­don Camp­bell’s at Man­i­toba Hy­dro: to pro­duce a re­port show­ing how in­ef­fec­tive the work­ers are, and only by stick­ing the aus­ter­ity la­bel to them will their ef­fec­tive­ness be cor­rected.

Hope­fully, Dr. Sri Navarat­nam sticks to her guns and tells Pal­lis­ter where to go. If he tries a fast one, then all those in Man­i­toba who have a his­tory at Cancer­Care should join me in protest­ing at the leg­is­la­ture.

Cancer does not dis­crim­i­nate on the ba­sis of pol­i­tics; there­fore, even his fol­low­ers should have enough brains to take a stand in favour of Cancer­Care.


The ob­jec­tive of a re­view of Cancer­Care Man­i­toba should be the qual­ity of pa­tient care. It should re­sult in a long-term strat­egy to pro­vide pa­tient care and sup­port ser­vices. Ac­cord­ing to the Cana­dian Cancer So­ci­ety’s statis­tics for 2017, there were 6,700 new cases of cancer in Man­i­toba and 2,900 deaths.

With an ag­ing pop­u­la­tion, cancer rates will con­tinue to grow. The eco­nomic bur­den of cancer will rise ac­cord­ingly. This strat­egy must also in­clude ways to re­duce the costs of cancer with­out com­pro­mis­ing pa­tient care and sup­ports. Early de­tec­tion of cancer can save lives and money.

Timely ac­cess to di­ag­nos­tic tests such as mam­mo­grams, stool tests, ul­tra­sound and MRIs in­creases the pos­si­bil­ity of early de­tec­tion. Pub­lic ed­u­ca­tion to in­crease aware­ness of symp­toms of cancer is also nec­es­sary. The pub­lic needs to be made aware of the ways we can re­duce our risk of a cancer di­ag­no­sis by choos­ing healthy life­styles and avoid­ing ex­po­sure to haz­ardous chem­i­cals found in the prod­ucts we use and the food we con­sume.

Vul­ner­a­ble pop­u­la­tions, such as preg­nant women, fe­tuses, the el­derly and those with com­pro­mised im­mune sys­tems due to other dis­eases or ill­nesses, are at a higher risk of a cancer di­ag­no­sis.

To en­sure the level of pa­tient care and sup­port ser­vices al­ready pro­vided by Cancer­Care Man­i­toba as cancer rates rise will re­quire ad­e­quate fund­ing. Strate­gies to keep peo­ple healthy will re­duce the in­ci­dence of cancer and early de­tec­tion will re­duce treat­ment costs. The health of Man­i­to­bans should be a top pri­or­ity.


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