Lest We Forget

I will NEVER Forget. Nor will I EVER break faith.

During World War I, Canadian Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD, wrote this most famous poem after burying a good friend on the battlefield:

In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved and were loved, and now we lie,

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.

At eleven o’clock this Thursday, November 11th, I will be standing in silence at the grave of my mother and father.

I will wear a Poppy, and while in silence I will remember the great sacrifice they both made when the GREATEST generation EVER kept the world safe from tyranny.

My mother served on the home front, my dad fought his way through Europe months before D-Day, when Allied Troops invaded Sicily, for the first time bringing the war to the Nazis.

My dad was wounded at Monte Cassino; he fought in the battle of the Bulge, and was decorated by her Majesty Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands for bravery above and beyond the call of duty.

Deployed from England, my dad saw action with the Canadian Carleton and York Regiment in Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany. To the day he died, and was buried under a Canadian Flag, he never spoke of his heroism and medals.

But always spoke of his pride in being there when it counted most.

He, along with the men and women of his generation were made of the right stuff. For them there weren’t any entitlements. And there weren’t questions of what does the government owe me

In those days, men and women answered the call, not waiting for someone else to do it for them. Sadly, we, the sons and daughters, the grandsons and granddaughters do not measure-up to those incredible people, and indeed have let them down.

On Father’s Day, I plant a small Canadian flag at the front of my parents’ headstone, where they lay side by side.

On Remembrance Day, I affix my Poppy to that flag in honor of what my parents did, for how they lived their lives, and for how they sacrificed for country and family.

In the last stanza of the poem it is written:

Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.

Most within our society have broken faith. But not me.

I will NEVER Forget – Nor will I EVER break faith.

There is no Audio Editorial with this Article. There is only well deserved silence.

Best Regards . . . Howard Galganov

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