This is the day we remember.
We remember all the men and women who served our country in the past, and those who serve today.
We remember our grandfather who served in the Canadian Expeditionary Force in World War 1. He was only 16 or 17 when he signed up. A child soldier eager to serve and to see the world. He survived, but was injured in battle (shrapnel wound to his head). He never talked about his war time experiences — he would have seen brutal battle in the muddy fields of France — but when we were very little, and because we asked, he would let us feel the small indent in his head where the bullet was once lodged.
Smart, serious, selfless, hardworking, and very dapper. That was my grandfather.
He died long before he could meet his granddaughter; but we keep his memory alive. Especially today.
My daughter — his granddaughter — wrote this poem in grade one; she read it for the Remembrance Day ceremony in front of her school. She was 6 years old.
“the poppies bloom
the people cry
they bow their
heads and say
Its simplicity is perfect, don’t you think? She is so good at getting to the heart of the matter with very few words. I admire her talent and creativity.
Her writing reminds me of the simple but beautiful poem In Flanders Field by Canadian poet, John McCrae. McCrae was an author, artist and physician who wrote In Flanders Fields during Ww1. The poem that is still recited across Canada on November 11th. He is remembered in this moving Heritage Minute by Historica Canada.