Posts Tagged ‘dead’

Wiltshire Army town builds war memorial without names of dead ‘for fear of getting spellings wrong’

November 9th, 2015

The town’s mayor, Cllr Chris Franklin, said: “The memorial committee’s decision to omit the names seems to be purely based on it being too much of a risk.

“The war memorial must have the names of those people born and bred in Tidworth who went to war and never came home. The memorial is putting right a glaring omission. It is about our boys who gave their lives in battle.”

“The normal saying is, ‘when you go home tell them of us and say: for your tomorrow we gave our today. The clue there is ‘tell them of us’ – if there’s no names they can’t tell us”

Cllr Chris Franklin

Town councillor Andrew Connelly said: “Put the names of our war heroes on it – they should be remembered by name.

“The people for whom it has been erected will now never be remembered. That defeats the whole purpose of the memorial. I am absolutely furious.”

Daz Stephenson, a member of the committee, said “We’ve done an awful lot of work looking into the names, however there’s a lot of obscurity and we don’t want to get it wrong.

“We would prefer to hand over the memorial next year and leave it up to the town council to do that research and make the decision to put the names on or not.”

Gallery: Moving war memorials around the world
Anti-Tory protesters deface war monument on Whitehall

But Cllr Franklin said: “Quite a bit of research has already been done and adding the names later would be a bit of a damp squib.

“We’re coming up to Remembrance and the normal saying is, ‘when you go home tell them of us and say: for your tomorrow we gave our today.

“The clue there is ‘tell them of us’ – if there’s no names they can’t tell us.”

World War Two

Store removes Remembrance Day display depicting dead soldier after complaints

November 8th, 2015

He told the Manchester Evening News: “As someone who is ex-forces, I found it in pretty bad taste.

“Everything done by the Royal British Legion is very professional and respectful.

“For someone who has served and seen casualties on the battlefield, or a family member who has lost someone, to walk and see that could really trigger stress. I’m glad it was changed.”

Another person tweeted: “How anybody ever thought this was a good idea at @asda needs their head testing. Absolutely disgusting.”

But some people thought it should have been retained.

Andy Kay wrote on Facebook: “Removed a fallen soldier poppy statue because it offended people. Well it’s removal offends me.”

The Remembrance Poppy by numbers

Prince Harry and Duke of Edinburgh visit Field of Remembrance

And Derek Hanstock said: “Cowards! It’s disgusting that you have removed the poppy display. I’ve spent my last penny in any Asda.”

An Asda spokeswoman said the display was intended as a mark of respects.

She said: “We’re proud to support the Poppy Appeal in our stores across the UK and have been welcoming volunteers from the Royal British Legion into our stores to sell remembrance poppies.

“Our colleagues have been holding fundraising activities in stores to support the Poppy Appeal and it was not our intention to cause offence with the poppy display at the Harpurhey store.

“There were a couple of complaints about the use of the mannequin within the display so a decision was made to remove the mannequin but leave the rest of the display and poppies standing.”

World War Two

Holy Mowers prevent Devon village war dead fading from memory

October 26th, 2014

Donaldson was in all likelihood killed while riding one of the horses towing a gun carriage, and without the intervention of Mr McNab and his friends his name, and that of the other fallen, risked fading into obscurity.

Another of the village’s dead was Major AA Cordner, of the Royal Marines Light Infantry, killed on St Georges Day, 1818, at the age of 28, when his ship HMS Vindictive took part in the Allied raid on Zeebrugge.

Mr McNab, 82, said: “It became obvious two years ago that the lettering of the names on the War Memorial had faded to such a degree that the young Army cadets who read out the names of the fallen in both wars on Remembrance Day could barely decipher them. I just decided we needed to do something about it to make sure the names could be read and that the individual sacrifice of those men would continue to be remembered.”

But the group’s efforts did not stop at simply renovating the memorial’s lettering.

Mr McNab and his friends, Rob Rawlings, Peter Heaton, Robert Clifford and Tim Clifford – collectively known as the Holy Mowers – decided to apply for a grant from the War Graves Commission. With the £750 they received they undertook a complete restoriation of the granite memorial cross and its surroundings in the churchyard of St Andrew’s, Whitchurch.

For several years the Holy Mowers had been cutting the grass and weeding the area around the cross and the nine war graves which surrounded it – some dating back from the 1860s, with another four from the 1914-18 conflict and two from the Second World War.

Now, with the War Graves Commission Grant, they set about repairing the paths around the memorial and cleaning up the cross itself.

“It was apparent that the area surrounding the granite memorial was in an horrendous condition,” said Mr McNab, who served with the Black Watch during the Korean War and in Kenya, followed by 17 years in the Royal Marines. “Working on Saturday mornings we dug the site over and cleared it of weeds, rocks and old tree roots.

“Then we boarded the sides of the site, laid a membarne down and began laying down the gravel – carting it onto the site in 72 barrel loads in one day.”

Finally the memorial’s facing was cleaned and the names re-painted, with the work completed in time for the site to be re-dedicated and ready for next month’s Remembrance Day service.

To keep costs down the Holy Mowers carried out the work themselves, allowing them to spend the grant – and an additional £150 they raised locally – on the necessary materials.

Mr McNab said: “We’d work for two hours and then retire to the local inn for an hour to refresh our ancient bodies. Most of us don’t attend church, but we firmly believe that the churchyard needs to be maintained and the men of the village remembered.”

One recent episode served to illustrate the importance of the group’s labours.

While he was crouched over the memorial, repainting the names of those lost, Mr McNab was approached by a Canadian family.

They had travelled to the village in the hope of finding the resting place of a distant family member, killed in action overseas.

“The family couldn’t find the grave – it’s whereabouts aren’t known – but they did see their relative’s name on the memorial. I fact I’d just been painting that section and they were delighted to see how much care was being taken of the war graves and the memorial itself”, said Mr McNab. “It was a very moving moment.”

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Prince Harry remembers New Zealand’s war dead at Monte Cassino

May 19th, 2014

During the memorial, Maori service personnel from the New Zealand armed forces performed a ceremonial chant, marching together with Prince Harry and other participants.

The battle, one of the bloodiest of World War II, over the ancient monastery was waged for four months. Victory was decided on the May 18, 1944 when Allied bombers reduced Monte Cassino to rubble.

The Allies are thought to have sustained 55,000 casualties during the struggle to push German troops from the crest of the towering hill some 130 km (85 miles) south of Rome.

An estimated 20,000 Germans were killed or wounded in the battle.

Source: RTV

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Japanese politicians defy critics to worship at controversial shrine to war dead

April 23rd, 2014

Washington expressed “disappointment” after Mr Abe went to Yasukuni in December, while Joe Biden, the vice president, called on all sides to take measures to “lower the tension” in the region.

Speaking to reporters after visiting the shrine on Tuesday, Hidehisa Otsuji, a member of Mr Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party, said the decision not to attend the festival in person “reflects the prime minister’s judgement in view of Japan’s national interests.”

Other senior members of the administration said the prime minister’s offering and the visit by politicians “should have nothing to do with” President Obama’s state visit.

Members of the cabinet who have visited the shrine during the festival include the health minister, the minister of internal affairs and the cabinet member charged with overseeing the return of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea.

Activists from Japan and South Korea filed a legal complaint against the Japanese government on Monday seeking damages for Mr Abe’s visit to the shrine in December, on the grounds that it violates the constitutional principle of the separation of the state and religion.

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