LETTERS: Lest we forget

We will wear our poppies proudly like those young and old soldiers wear their medals.

Remembrance Day is upon us again. It’s heartwarming to see young people finally getting involved with this solemn day that has always been a legacy to the brave soldiers the world over, not just for those brave souls that gave their all in one or two wars, but all the conflicts that keep us free — well kind of.

It’s always with heavy hearts, we remember all those young men and women soldiers that never got to come home and savour the fruits of their bravery, unfold in the way we have and bare witness to their sacrifice.

One such lucky artillery gunner to come home was my grandpa Fred Hall, my mom’s father.

I remembered being so young and visiting him in London, U.K., at Chelsey Pentioners Barracks where all the First World War vets lived in a huge castel affair. They all wore red serge and black caps. Most unfortunately some were dismembered and wheelchair bound. The thing that puzzled me most was all the medals they so proudly sported.

I asked grampy, why would you stick your neck out for a  bunch of coins on ribbons? His answer was when you go home and sit down at the Sunday dinner table, look around at your mom, dad, brothers and sisters and the food before you. If that does not satisfy your curiosity nothing ever will.

I believed the penny dropped right there and then. I remember reaching over to the gizmo attached to his cardigan, a microphone, with volume control. I cranked it up and yelled into it. Thank you grandpa from all of us. I reached over and gave him a peck on his white bristly whiskers (ouch).

We will wear our poppies proudly like those young and old soldiers wear their medals. Lest we forget. I don’t think we ever will as long as there is a calendar sporting Nov. 11 on it. When will we ever learn? Never, as long there is greed and selfishness in this tired old world.

Andy Homan

Penticton