Sunday, November 11, 2012

Coming off the Battle Field – We will Remember

These BLOGS are sponsored by my businesses.
Misty Hollow Carvingwas launched in October 2008
Misty Hollow Digital Images was launched on September 26, 2012.
“Crop Circles’ Web Site” where all my images are available.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Coming off the Battle Field – We will Remember
This past week my wife and I watched our Grandson play football with his team.  The young vibrant men fought a hard battle against each other for that full two hours.  ‘Our Team’ lost… but it was a good game.

We stood at the side of the field as they walked off the playing field toward the change rooms.  Their uniforms were filthy with the mud from the football field. Their arms, legs and boots were caked with mud. Most had their helmets off and all were quiet as they left defeated.  No one was saying anything.

I watched for the Quarterback, the tall young fellow that had led his team to this final game. His team had done fairly well all season but in the last important game many factors were against them and he was feeling the pain of a loss.

There standing at the side of the field was a young lady with her arms around this big kid.  His head was tucked in on her shoulder and she was standing on her tip toes as she held on tight.  It was obvious that he was crying and she was patting his shoulders – mud and all.

My Grandson had his own reaction to what had happened.  He also was very upset. When my daughter asked how he was doing he said with some tears also, “I LOVE those guys…”  For a majority of the team this is Grade 12 and they are finished with football. In some cases the players had actually come back for one more season after their grade 12 – (they call it their victory lap) where they spend one more year at High School to improve their marks … or play one more season of football.

At the end as we drove home I thought a lot about what we had just witnessed… the tough game… the good fight for a win… the defeat… the exit from the field all dirty and grimy… some limping and wounded from the 2 hours fight on the field… and then my Grandson’s comment about how much he cared for his team.

94 years ago today a Cease Fire was declared in a horrific war on what was called the “Western Front”. The people that were fighting stopped killing each other and put their guns down.  Since that time we have stopped to remember all the people that had died in that horrific war – over 20 million people died in that period from 1914 to 1918.

Can you imagine that?

About the Western Front, Wikipedia offers the following – quote..
“Following the outbreak of World War I in 1914, the German Army opened the Western Front by first invading Luxembourg and Belgium, then gaining military control of important industrial regions in France. The tide of the advance was dramatically turned with the Battle of the Marne. Following the race to the sea, both sides dug in along a meandering line of fortified trenches, stretching from the North Sea to the Swiss frontier with France. This line remained essentially unchanged for most of the war.
Between 1915 and 1917 there were several major offensives along this front. The attacks employed massive artillery bombardments and massed infantry advances. However, a combination of entrenchments, machine gun nests, barbed wire, and artillery repeatedly inflicted severe casualties on the attackers and counterattacking defenders. As a result, no significant advances were made. Among the most costly of these offensives were the Battle of Verdun with a combined 700,000 dead, the Battle of the Somme with more than a million casualties, and the Battle of Passchendaele with roughly 600,000 casualties.” End quote.

700,000 dead, over one million casualties, and then 600,000 casualties… easy to read… but then when I pause… to think… many were the same age as my Grandson’s football team.

Some survived to come home broken men.  Their injuries were so severe that they would never recover from them. The ones that did recover were never whole men.  They were broken by what they saw and felt on the battle field.

What started as a ‘good game’ – where young men openly volunteered to go fight the war that Germany and others had launched – was over and most would never come back.

“I LOVE those guys…” was my Grandson’s words…

I can only imagine that the young fellows in 1918, November 11th were remembering what had happened to their friends that had fought so hard beside them… and had then died… not walking off the battle field.

I know that I cannot really compare a High School football game to War. It is not fair to even try. But I can compare bloody, sweaty, mud covered and limping young men coming home – with memories of what happened to them on a battle field.

I keep seeing our team leave the field… and then the flash back comes again… 94 years ago young men just like ours – almost the same age… saw that it was over – and they had to remember.

Since that time… there was another War, and then another, and then another – and yet still another where more young men would never come home again.  The numbers of dead staggers my mind. The numbers of wounded forever stop my thoughts and I cannot comprehend what they have gone through.

I was born during the last year of the one war. I nestled into my mother’s arms and never had any idea of what was going on. 

But today I think of the ones that were there… and I swallow hard. The lump in my throat will not go away.  These were real people with real lives… and places to be and things to do… that would never be the same again.

Oh God I remember… and think of them often!
~ Murray Lincoln ~
For your inspection
To help me promote my Web Site please copy this URL address and email to someone today and


No comments: