Why we need to remember
IN 1914 Private Thomas Mcindoe went to enlist and was rejected as looking too young. He went home, put on his bowler hat, returned and was accepted into the 12th Battalion, Middlesex Regt. He was still under 16.
In 1915 Mrs M. Hall requested war work and was sent to a munitions factory where for 10 hours each day, with only one break, she and her co-workers slowly turned yellow as they packed shells. Skin, hair and even toenails were affected, and the rashes they developed were a half-inch thick.
In 1916 Captain Philip Neame, 15th Field Company, Royal Engineers, was in one of the first brigades to ever see a tank. At Leuze Wood it broke down; possibly overworked by the time of the engagement on the Somme.
In 1917 at Third Ypres Private Frederick Collins of the Royal Tank Corps saw an elderly priest in a shellhole giving the Last Rites to an officer whose brains had been blown out.
In 1918 Trooper Alexander Jamieson of the 11th Battalion, The Royal Scots Fusiliers, as they cleared Ypres, heard shouting – the war was over.
And Sergeant Major Richard Tobin, Hood Battalion, Royal Naval Division said that they were stunned. The guns had stopped; the fighting stopped; the killing stopped. He thought of the slaughter, the hardships, the waste and the friends he had lost.
(The above are all taken from Forgotten Voices of the Great War by Max Arthur. A very fine book.)
Our debt to those who served and died, and to those who served and survived, often to live with tormented memories of all they had been through as they battled for our freedom, can never be repaid. We must always remember them. Thelma Edwards,
Old Comrades Hall (my house but formerly used by the British Legion), Hume,