Friday, May 6, 2011

A War Becomes Dusty History

Word has come down that the last combat veteran of World War One, Claude Stanley Choules has died at the age of one hundred ten. It's probably asking too much, but it seems a shame that he couldn't have made it long enough to see the hundred year anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War.

Reading about it is very odd to me, because I'm old enough to remember when there were lots of First World War veterans still around. I don't think it was ever a common stock character, but Grandpa up in his room having flashbacks and appearing in greatcoat and gas mask is something I remember from more than one TV show. (Possibly. I may have seen it just once, but the comic/horror effect caused it to multiply.)

When the centennial does roll around in 2014, let's hope the powers that be give it serious reflection, because we are still dealing with its aftershocks all these years later.


  1. Well said and I agree completely. WWII veterans are also departing this mortal coil at an alarming rate.

  2. I knew several when I was growing up (I was born in 1952). One good friend that died some years back was in the German army in WWI, and had an Iron Cross and a picture of Kaiser Bill awarding it to him.
    And like Keads said, the WWII people are going fast.