Monday, 4 August 2014

Contemplation

Today, 100 years ago, Britain declared war.

So many of us have relatives who served their country.  My Fathers uncle died in the war and his grave has only been found by the family recently and my Father visited last year.

I do not glorify war in any way, but I do believe so very strongly in remembering the past, those who served, especially those who gave their lives for us, and what war has done to us all.

My family has a military background in several ways, and so do I with my own personal, albeit very small, service to my country.  I feel therefore that I can say these things as like many of you, I have some small understanding of the effect and outcome of these things and what it does to people who serve and to their families.

Today we know what the outcome was of The Great War, but those entering it 100 years ago did not.  They had no idea what lay ahead, the carnage and devastation that would follow and the length of time that the war would last.  I cannot imagine what that must have been like for those soldiers going off to war.

It was the summer, autumn was ahead, harvests were being gathered, but in just a short time the whole world changed and has never been the same since.  They thought that they would be home for Christmas, but it was not to be.  For a long time.  If ever.

Today, we especially remember.

Tonight we are asked to turn out the lights from 10pm to 11pm and to keep just a single candle burning.  You can find out more about it here.

Amy

29 comments:

  1. Amy, a lovely remembrance. In Springfield, IL at the Lincoln Library and Museum, there is a depiction of the Civil War, the battles that were fought, pictures of many of those who served and died, and a running tally of the lives that were lost. It is a very humbling experience, and a tribute to those who fought for what they believed in. Thanks for sharing our thoughts. My son-in-law and daughter both traveled to Iraq some years ago.

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  2. Both my husband and I served in the Army, myself for 8 years and my husband for 22 years, as well as 14 years as an Army wife, so we are certainly thinking of the lives lost today.

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  3. For the last few years there have been so many war remembrance events and services, but for some reason this 100 year anniversary is much more moving. Mainly because, as you mention, all of these young men did not have a clue what they were heading for, and were totally unprepared for all the dangers that lay ahead of them. It is a staggering statistic that 10 million young men lost their lives during the four years of the war, and 7 million civilians.

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  4. I didn't know about the Lights Out event tonight. Thanks for sharing about it. War is utterly horrible and we must remember those who gave their lives for us in WW1 and other wars since.

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  5. Exactly 100 years ago, today, Germany invaded Belgium, after our refusal to give right of way to the Germans to go to France.
    That same day, in the evening, Britain gave Germany an ultimatum : retreat from Belgium within 24h...
    We all know what followed...
    I like the initiative of burning only one candle to remember...

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  6. Such a strong post Amy. I too know the affects of war on the family. My grandfathers were both in World War 2 and during that time my grandmothers were left with all of the other woman to raise their families by themselves and take care of the home. Such strong people from these generations. I think that lights out in remembrance is a wonderful way to honor everyone who lost their life in this war and for the families as well. Wishing you a good day friend....Nicole xoxo

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  7. A poignant post. I'm sure every family will have been touched by the effects of war in one way or another, that's why it's so important to remember.

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  8. Thank you Amy I didn't know about that single candle and it is such a wonderful way to honour and remember .

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  9. Poignant post Amy. I have been watching a service in Liege on the TV, it was very touching indeed.

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  10. Hello Amy,

    Thank you so much for your post today, yes we MUST never forget the sacrifices our Men and Women make
    in any War. They are truly our Heros.

    luv
    irene
    xxxx

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  11. Thanks for the link to TRBL and their one light tribute. My family lost two young men in the Great War, both aged 23 years, both at the Battle of the Somme. I'm so grateful to them and all those others who paid the ultimate price and they will never be forgotten.

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  12. A very moving post Amy. A few years ago with went to Ypres and the war cemetery at Passchendaele, it really brought it home to us how many young men lost their lives so far from home x

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  13. I completely concur Amy, as it doesn't matter what we believe, or the side we are for, we must always stand behind the memory of those that gave it all for us... their lives.
    I hope you have a great week!
    I leave for London in the morning, I'm so excited!
    Tammy x

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  14. A lovely post, we must never forget the huge sacrifices that we made for us.

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  15. Thank you and your family for their military service. I am grateful for those who are called to duty for their Country - they are incredible heroes and not to be forgotten. Thank you for this post and the remembrance.

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  16. Lovely post, Amy. So important to remember those who lost their lives fighting for us. xxx

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  17. Thanks for this post, Amy. I just read Chel's post as well and am reminded of the candle lighting in both posts. I might do that this evening. My father was overseas as a teenager and fought on the battlefields of France and Belgium. He was in Mons when the Armistace was signed. What brave young men they were!! xx Pam

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  18. Thank you Amy. I think the lights out idea is great and have looked to see so many events organised...isn't it wonderful. I'll have a candle in my window this evening.

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  19. A beautiful post Amy, we will remember them. CJ xx

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  20. This is a nice tribute Amy, and I like the idea of lights out too. My son served in the army as did other relatives. Thanks for you service as well.

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  21. What a lovely way to honor these brave men and women who fought for the world's freedoms. My Dad was a military man. Thank you for sharing this thoughtful post. xo Karen

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  22. I just cannot fathom what our forebears went through for our freedom and living so far away from any unrest, it can be hard to comprehend that wars continue to rage around the world today. I only recently learnt that at the time of WW1, 10% of our countrymen and women were serving overseas and we suffered a huge casuality rate including over 18,000 deaths, which is a large toll anyway but even more so when our population was a little over 1,000,000 at the time. The effects of that war must have touched nearly every community in New Zealand and in just about every small town you drive through, there are memorials to the fallen. Those brave men and women, such courage, such sacrifice.

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  23. I forgot about turning the lights out but - due to an early night - did have just the one lamp burning. My family lived (and suffered, as did many) through the Second World War in Poland and beyond but the First World War has a real resonance for me. We were shown 'All Quiet on the Western Front' at primary school (probably not the best thing to show young children) and I went home in tears.
    Ever since then I always visit the little headstones of soldiers when meandering through a cemetery and sometimes attend the memorial service at our local park. It's so sad.
    It's important that we never forget.
    Sarah.

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  24. Beautiful post Amy and I love that you turn out the lights, it's such a lovely gesture to have just the candle burning. :)

    Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving such a sweet comment, I appreciate it :)

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  25. It's an important anniversary. I always enjoyed learning about WWI in school, and studied the poetry of the time period extensively when I majored in English in college. There was a lot of tragic loss and the war changed the world forever.

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  26. Such a beautiful post Amy. It is so important that we never forget what so many did for us. It is easy to get busy in our lives, but I think this little remembrance was lovely. I know so many who lit a candle, it was such a lovely gesture. x

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