BY WENDY CZAKO-MAH
“Lest we forget.”
This phrase was heard and read over and over last week. It was in newspapers and magazines, on the radio and TV, and even social media.
Most of us know what it means, and what it’s in reference to. But we have to remember that not everyone was born here, nor does everyone grow up here.
If we know what it means, we should be able to pass on this knowledge to those who don’t.
Throughout our lives we are taught about war, more specifically, the First World War and the Second World War. We are reminded that we need to be grateful for the freedom we have today. We are shown numerous movies in class to demonstrate the horrors of war, and urged to thank the many veterans who are still with us today and able to tell us their stories.
How do we help newcomers to this land understand the sacrifices these men and women made for our freedom – freedom which enticed many of them to come to this country?
As the veterans of war slowly die, how do we ensure our children and their children remember?
It was reported recently that we lose approximately 700 U.S. veterans a day, and 300 Canadian veterans per year.
Today’s children can’t possible understand what these men and women went through, not to mention what they saw.
Many of us have or had grandparents who fought, but how many of us ask about their past? We shouldn’t be afraid. By talking to them, their memories will become our memories, ones that can be passed on. That way our children, or our friends, can talk to their friends about these stories. These stories can then be told to people who are not familiar with war and all its atrocities.
It’s the least we can do.
The views herein represent the position of the newspaper, not necessarily the author.