Remembrance Day has always struck a deep chord within me. I look through photos of loved ones who fought for our country and I am struck by how young they are, the smiles for the camera, the hope and promise in their eyes. And I look at other photos of them when we knew them as “Uncle”, “Dad”, “Grandpa” and I look in their eyes trying to imagine what they saw. The stories.
My two grandfathers…Grampa and Grandad …together they won WW1 and then reunited to win WW2. At least that’s what Grandad used to tell us …
My Uncle Roy, merchant seaman, my Granny Gray, war widow, my Uncle Gordon, British Navy, and my Dad, British Army. My Uncle Gordon was only 2 years old when my grandfather, Alexander Gray, was killed in World War Two.
My grandad made it all the way to Russia from England to fight in WW1 before they found out he was under age and sent him back.
I decided this year to make a little slidshow. More stories after the pictures. Enjoy and think, and remember with gratitude. Thanks to all who sent pictures – I love that every single image came with a story from you.
My grandfather was deployed to England two weeks after he married my grandmother, in August 1943. After months of training he began flying combat missions in early 1944. His crew flew 35 (the maximum number allowed in Bomber Command) and, against the odds, not one member of the crew was so much as scratched. They were nicknamed the “Jinx Crew” because anyone who flew a plane they had previously used tended to not come back from the subsequent mission. They bombed cities, laid mines, bombed the defenses at the beaches of D-Day, the works.
My grandfather Joe Sigouin was a Captain in the Canadian Signal Corps. To this day when someone asks me what he did in the army and i say, “Signal Corps” they reply, “Oh, Signal Corps!” with a tremendous amount of respect.
Dad’s first tour was liberating concentration camps. He was 17, just after WWII ended. He did over 600 jumps, saved a guy whose chute hadn’t opened, diving to catch him before opening his own chute.
Alexander Macallan Gray 2nd Lt. in the Highland Light Infantry (City of Glasgow Regiment). Died Aug 27, 1940 from injuries sustained at Dunkirk.