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Old 25 July 2009, 11:07   #1
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Old Harry passes on

Just heard 'The last fighting Tommy' Harry Patch has died at 111 years old! The very last survivor of the Western front who even lived through the Hell of Passchendael.When you consider the changes seen and the sacrifices made by his generation it beggers belief!
His story 'The last fighting Tommy' is well worth a read!I think we would all do well to remember them,and the subsiquent generations who have[and continue to] lay down thier lives on our behalf.I for one salute them!
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Old 25 July 2009, 11:07   #2
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Well said!
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Old 25 July 2009, 12:45   #3
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"I am very happy to be here today. It is not just an honour for me but for an entire generation. It is important to remember the dead from both sides of the conflict. Irrespective of the uniforms we wore, we were all victims."

He showed no spite for his enemy, he sounded like a true gentlemen and is a great loss to our country.
It is quite literally the end of an era.

Rest in peace.
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Old 25 July 2009, 12:55   #4
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True gent! Well said Ian!
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Old 25 July 2009, 12:58   #5
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I could not agree more. I hope that he rests in peace free from the memories that have clouded his life. He apparently never spoke of his experiences to anyone until he was persuaded late in life to tell his story. I have no doubt that it would have been a painful for Harry to relive those experiences, but I am glad he had the courage to do so.

I have nothing but admiration for him and his comrade’s both in the past and the present, but by the same token I have complete contempt for the leaders that send them in the first place.
Lions led by Donkeys.
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Old 25 July 2009, 14:18   #6
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Hear hear!!!
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Old 26 July 2009, 04:35   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chewy View Post
"I am very happy to be here today. It is not just an honour for me but for an entire generation. It is important to remember the dead from both sides of the conflict. Irrespective of the uniforms we wore, we were all victims."

He showed no spite for his enemy, he sounded like a true gentlemen and is a great loss to our country.
It is quite literally the end of an era.

Rest in peace.
Well said Chewy!How long will it be befor we are saying goodbye to the last SECOND World War Veterain? not befor we relise thier true worth,....and treat them accordingly I HOPE!!
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Old 26 July 2009, 08:35   #8
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I know it's scary - one minute there are loads of them about - all of a sudden they have all gone!!!

When I was down checking on my boat back in January it was so cold the sea had frozen over. I wasn't feeling too good and was frozen through. I was sitting in the car trying to warm up and this old gent came up to talk to me.

He stood by the window and talked to me for ages - I asked him if he was cold and he said - "I will never be cold again after the Russian convoys". I thought he was losing his marbles and then he said he was going down to check on his boat.

I honestly thought he had gone by this stage. The next thing he tottered off - used the fob to open the gate and went down to check on his old Princess 35!!!

When he came back I got chatting to him again - what an amazing bloke - he had been on the Russian convoys - and fought at Narvick. When I asked how old he was he told me - 88 years old!!!
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Old 26 July 2009, 13:38   #9
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When I was a teenager I talked to a WW1 vet at an archive run by one of my dad's mates I was looking at gas masks for a picture, I asked him what you "did" during a gas attack. He said nothing you just sat still and your mind would turn to how good the girl was who did the stitching on your mask.
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Old 26 July 2009, 14:16   #10
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A sad day indeed, particularly for the youth of this country. For all their front & bravado, they will never know what it takes to live through the horrors of a war like this.

I remember sitting for hours with my grand-father listening to his recall of events and looking in awe at the emtpy brass shell cases and other objects that i wont publish. It was very strange that he would only talk to me about his experiences, a child of 10/11.
Was very proud of him and all the others of his generation.

On a lighter note, when I read the thread title my first thought was that the pinnicle know as Old Harry had collapsed! Doh
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