Last year, I wrote a post about my uncle who died during World War II. His parents received a series of letters to let them know what was happening. You can read that post and the letters here: Letters to My Grandma. I still tear up everytime I read them as it is heartbreaking to consider what it would feel like for any parent to receive the news that their child is missing or has been killed.
When I was younger, I always remembered seeing the picture of my uncle at my grandma's house. She hung it proudly in a prominent place in her home and she was also very proud to be The Silver Cross Mother in Yorkton for several years. She laid the wreath on behalf of mothers. I was pretty young at the time but I recall how important it was to her and she continued to attend the ceremonies even when she was in her eighties.
My Grandma passed away several years ago...she was born in the early 1900s and my Dad was born when she was in her 40's so that accounts for the large age gap! One thing that I always thought was really special (and I am sure my Grandma did too) was that my Dad was born on the exact same day as his oldest brother. George Alvin was born on May 22, 1920 and my Dad was born on May 22, 1942 and would have only been a few months old when his oldest brother went missing and was presumed dead.
This year, I asked my Dad for a photograph of my Uncle so I can continue to share the stories of war and peace with my own children. I believe it's important to make a personal connection with someone you know or didn't get a chance to know.