A lost generation.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Last night I had the privilege of reading my late grandfather’s diary, written whilst serving with the Tank Regiment in Northern Italy during World War II. The diary fits into the palm of your hand and is is almost perfectly preserved with the daily entries he made in 1944. His handwriting is immaculate.
On 1st November 1944, that changes. His writing becomes almost illegible. The reason: whilst advancing north pushing the Germans back in the Forli region of the country, he was shot, seriously injuring his right arm.
A retrospective entry written by him for that day (using his left hand) simply states “Got wounded.” The injury saw him hospitalised in Italy for months before being transported by boat to Barry, Wales. He remained disabled for the rest of his life.
The simplicity of the entry is an example of the kind of man he, and the brave men that fought the war with him, were.
His unassuming restraint in using just these two words to describe a sustained and bloody battle in which several of his comrades were killed around him is indicative of a disciplined and humble generation that led us to victory given us the freedoms we enjoy today.
Certain sections of the population should look at this in shame as our country’s decline shows no sign of abating and the lower end of the social spectrum continues to expand.


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