Sunday, 28 September 2008

The Brave Few

Yesterday we paid a visit here. We only live about 10 minutes away and last visited about 20 years ago.

It is a sad place, a place of loss and memories and death. Taken at face value it is a huge collection of war time memorabilia housed in the original buildings that date from the period. 40's music plays gaily in the background whilst you wander around the exhibits.
A marvellous record of the past you might think, but each mangled engine, each shattered propeller, each bullet hole in the fuselage represents the loss of a young man's life. And they were young. Story after story relates the downing of the various aircraft on show and the name and age of the pilot. Most were between the age of 19 and 24 with only a few months of training behind them before they were expected to take to the skies.
Imagine that... they weren't even old enough to vote (21), yet they were old enough to die a horrendous death and be proud of be labelled a "hero"! One comparisson made by today's standards was to imagine passing your driving test and then being put behind the wheel of a grand prix racing car and told to get on with it! Imagine your own son, husband or brother. (My brother at 19 couldn't even get out of bed, but that's another story!)

I found it a very sobering experience and of course your thoughts turn to the soldiers that are fighting right now, this minute, somewhere far, far least back then they were fighting for King and Country, our Country.......

Dev X


A Bun Can Dance said...

Hello Dev. What a fascinating and sobering experience that is. It is shocking to us in this period in time and whilst we all enjoy such a range of comforts in life. As you say, they were so incredibly young. My parents have said that their respective fathers never spoke about their war experiences for the remainder of their lives. As if it was all too shocking and horrific to share with families. We can only imagine, can't we? Thank you for a sensitive, thought provoking entry. Denise.

Pipany said...

Very thought provoking post Dev. xx

Herzblatt said...

I feel with you seeing all the young boys who died in a terrible war and I hoped that our husbands or sons will never be involved in another war again but my hope didn`t come true and I am afraid it will never change....worldwide there are so many small and big wars.....
Will it change one day???? Perhaps when all countries and governments have got so many problems with our environment, but I suppose that then they will fight against each other because of water or food.
I am always shocked when I watch pictures of it on TV.
I always feel very very ashamed when I think about Germany`s role in the 1st and 2nd world war and I really wish to have NEVER again such a terrible horrible cruel and unbelievable war!!!!
I was born much later than the 2nd world war had been but I will feel ashamed of what had happened in Germany all my life!!

Marja Kristiina said...

That must have been a wonderful experience in spite of the sadness and even shock we face in such places. It's important to know what has happened and what is happening right now. And not just close one's eyes.

It feels utterly inappropriate to do this now but, um, I've just tagged you... If you have both the time and the energy to accept the blog challenge, that is.

Take care!

Sal said...

It's an excellent post!
It makes me mad that we don't seem to have learnt a lot and still send young lads off to war..lads that are sons, husbands and even fathers.
Thank you for sharing your visit.