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Normandy no more

 

As I prayerfully reflect on the many lives lost on D Day, I wrote this poem. Writing it got me thinking about my grandfather, who lied about his age to fight in the infantry division in World War I for the Canadian Expeditionary Force, which was the forerunner to the Canadian Armed Forces. He was only 17. Bompa, the British term for grandfather, was PFC Sandford Dobson. He paid a high cost for serving his country with emphysema from mustard gas exposure.
Every morning my bompa got up he would cough for what seemed to me to feel like an eternity before he could start his day. I cried in my spirit with each cough I would hear. thinking what a horrible price he paid for the freedoms we enjoy
 As a boy of five I see him fight for his breath more than ever before. Sweat is dripping down his face.  He reaches down to pet our chihuaha, Sandy. He dies later that day from his third heart attack.
The lessons he taught me about being a man who gives to others, really listens to and loves others, has a zest for life, who is a man of integrity, I pray will always be a part of who I am.
Bompa, this poem is my gift to all who live with the devastation of war. We must never forget the sacrifices made on those cold and lonely fields of battle.
Let us give all veterans and those serving as soldiers from Private to General, from Seaman to Admiral, the respect and all the benefits they deserve.
To do any less than this shames us as a society.
Normandy no more

They land on Normandy beach

They come from village, town, city, farm

Defeating Hitler’s evil reign is their goal

Hitler’s terror must end of mother, father, brother, sister,friend

These teenagers 16,17

These young men with the dream of university, career

With courage go into the path of fear

Far too young to die, for freedom for you, for I

We remember the counsellors, chaplains, nurses, doctors

Who see the wounds of war

Shattered minds

Shattered bodies

Shattered futures

Shattered lives

For soldiers who all give their best

For those who’ve gone to their eternal rest

For soldiers willing to go after the dictator, the brute

For those with courage resolute

For those who go into the fray

This for all of us we need to pray

That there would never be another Normandy

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