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Memories Lost

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trelawney126

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Looking back into my dim and distant childhood, I remember with fondness the Christmas's when all the family got together.

My grandfather served in the Great War and was a stretcher bearer during the battle of the Somme. Immaculately dressed he was

always resplendant in his collar and tie. Wilf, was another face one could see on this annual pilgrimage, like my grandfather Wilf had

also served in France during the Great War.

My grandfather also served in the second world war, and I can still remember a photograph of him wearing the uniform of an RAF sergeant, which

perched precariously on the mantlepiece which looked like the picture and frame would shortly be taking flying lessons.

My parents occupied the sofa, dad was a Petty Officer Gunnery Instructor and had served in the Royal Navy during WW2 similarly my mother was

an ex WRAAF telephonist.

It was inevitable that with such a pedigree both myself and my two brothers would end up serving the colours. My two brothers joined the Army and

I, the Navy.

Later in life, having married i found out that my wifes geat grandfather had served in the Lancashire Fusiliers and was killed in 1917 at Paschendale, having served in

Gallipoli and Egypt. ( Thanks to Alan) . We visited Tyne Cott for the second time, this year, to pay our respects.

Sadly I cannot recall talking to anyone in my family about their experiences and regret now all the missed opportunities that can never be regained.

The last "Tommy" has passed and soon another generation will join them.

Thankfully there are those on this forum who have taken an interest and are able to make up for all the times when first hand information was available.

It isn't until one starts to do a bit of research that you fully realise what you have had and sadly what we have lost.

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It is so sad that this happens so often. I had planed to record my Great Uncle's memories not only of WW1 but also his childhood in Hampshire. This was to happen on the Friday but he died on the Thursday. I still regret not taking the tape recorder years earlier. The trouble is we think they will always be with us.

Yes, thanks to this site they will never be forgotten.

Mouse

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I am sincerely sorry to hear of your loss. At a better time however, you could perhaps make it a priority to write up what you do know?

 

All I have of my entire family is memories. Of the older ones, I am now the last of the line. When memories are all you have, they are priceless.

 

Warmest regards,

Mike

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Uncle George

Posted

Yes, I used to think this way: I lived with my Grandmother when I was a boy, and three of her brothers served in the Great War. They would often visit, but I never spoke to them about their experiences. After they had died, I used to criticise myself for this.

 

But really, there was no need for me to be so hard on myself. The idea of these old soldiers sharing their past with me, a schoolboy, is really not a plausible scenario. These were reserved, private men who, I would imagine, really didn't want to talk about the war at all. We can and do honour their service, and remember them with affection. That's enough.

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Thanks.

I have started to sort Photographs from WW1 he took in the Military Hospital, also the Local Defense Volunteers information.

I will write down the stories I remember, but when he told them you felt you were there with him. Trelawney There is a village in North Wales Trelawnyd my son lived there for a while.

Thanks for the push to get it all recorded.

Mouse

 

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Canadian J

Posted

Very nicely written and a very common sentiment I would say.

- J

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