View From The Glen

Friday, November 12, 2010

War Stories....Part II

In honour of Remembrance Day I am writing a series of war stories that I have been told about mine and Andrew's grandparents and family who lived, fought, and sometimes died in World War II. War is not just about battle. It's also about living - the everyday survival of those left behind.

Today: Andrew's Grandparents

In World War II, young Betty Hamer left her rural English home to join the army. When she walked into the mess hall the first day - one of the first wave of British women to do so - she was met by a chorus of boos from her countrymen: men who would now be off to war, their jobs on the muitions line taken by these women. Amongst the soldiers there that day was a group of Canadians. One of them - a young handsome Newfoundlander named Tom, made his way over to the women. "You're welcome to sit with us," he said.  They did and the rest was history. Betty married Tom and at the end of the war, baby-in-tow, Betty came to Canada as a war bride. 

Note: A few years ago, Betty and my mother-in-law, Liz were able to travel back to Halifax for the War Bride Reunion.

And a Special Shout Out:
Soldiers are not the only ones who are heroes. I think of all the women and children who lived through the world wars, waiting and hoping, and making do when food was short, and worrying. Sometimes it's easier to be doing something - even if it's dangerous - than it is to be sitting at home knowing your loved ones are in danger. I have always been amazed at the courage and resilience of those who lived through the world wars whether on the fighting fields, or keeping the home fires burning. I am no less in awe today. While I am one of those who appreciates all our soldiers do for us overseas and am proud of them, this shout out is for the spouses, parents, sons and daughters of those who serve their country. I'm proud of them too.

Andrew's Uncle Eldon, WWII
Torpedoed on the Shawinigan and lost at sea

1 comment:

Finola said...

That photograph of Andrew's grandparents is striking. What a beautiful couple.

And you already know this, but you have been awarded on my blog :)