Lest We Forget

11 11 2008

 Today is the day you stop you honor and you recognize those who have fought died and lived for your country. Today is the day you remember the fallen soldiers in all wars fought for our country.

I have always had a connection with November 11th. I have grandfathers who fought in World War 2 for the British and parents who were bothin the Military. I have a sister who although not a solider is directly linked through her job with the current war in Afghanistan. I have a connection with this day like I believe every single person does.

I have a tough time listening to the news this time of year as there are endless stories of grieving families,mothers,wives,husbands,children,fathers for their lost sons and daughters. I have driven into work for the last 2 days in floods of tears as they have retold their fallen soldiers story on the radio for all to hear.

It puts my life into perspective very clearly. It makes my worries and fears seems somewhat small in compression. SO what if I have felt let down or somewhat heart broken , that is nothing to compare to the loss of a loved one to a war thousands of miles away. It makes me grateful and thankful to know that they are willing to sacrifice themselves in such a deadly and terrifying way.

Solders like Sergeant Shane Hank Stachnik who was killed in Afghanistan on September 3 2006. Who’s mother has been chosen as this years Silver Cross Mother . I listened to her speak on the radio yesterday on the way into work. Just before hearing the news piece I was wrapped up in my own world my own issues about life and men and work and being hurt. The minute I heard her voice and telling her sons story it was gone I stopped worrying and obsessing about my own life and started listening to a women who has lost her baby to a war thousands of miles away and I cried endlessly. SHe recounted getting a call at 5 am in the morning from the local RCMP. They had to call her rather then the army Chaplin and men who were meant to tell her that her son was lost forever because she lived out in the country and they could not find their way there. She asked “Is Shane ok ?” to which they said ” Ma’am we need to see you now” she obviously knew at that point that her son was dead and lost forever. She said “its not like they were calling in for coffee at 5 in the morning”  Her son was killed in a ambush while leading his section on a ground offensive against the Taliban. This was not his first but his second tour of duty . He left behind a fiance and 2 step children and was due to be married upon his return to his country …and he will never get that chance …he was the same age as I am , this man was 30 and he is dead doing what he believed in and committed to.

So before you say you do not agree with wars and you cannot support the mission in Afghanistan re think what you think and re phrase what you say. You havet he right to disagree with our war in Afghanistan but you do not have the right to not support and show your compassion to these soldiers and their families.

It has been 90 years since world war 1 …90 years we have one veteran left in Canada from that war still alive . John Babcock, he is our last living piece of history to a incredibly brutal and bloody war. HE was a shocking 15 and a half when he tried to sign up to fight in the war …15 and a half people. I believe he is currently 108 years old now. It is men like him that fought for the country we currently live in. It is men like him that took the risk felt the call of duty and did what he thought was the right thing to do at the time. 

So I ask you please honor men like Sergeant Stachnik and John Babcock today. As you do it remember and realize all they have done for us and all they continue to do. They have all made the ultimate sacrifice for what they believe in and for you !