To the editor,
I write this letter with utmost respect to each and every veteran, living or dead.
Following the end of the First and Second World Wars, and later wars and conflicts, the merchant marine’s ‘war sailors’ are still a largely forgotten group.
Knowing full well the grave danger that lay ahead, they signed up to transport the desperately needed supplies such as oil, gasoline, weapons, ammunitions, etc., to all branches of the allied fighting forces, and without fanfare or recognition, they died on the oceans at a rate higher than those lost on the battlefields.
The fact remains, that had it not been for those unlisted volunteers – the men and women war sailors, the Second World War would have been a dead loss for the allied forces. Yet today, we still do not show them the respect, recognition or gratitude they so much deserve for their selfless service and ultimate sacrifices.
It was only a few years ago that the merchant navy plaque got added to our local cenotaph, and at first, only on the side. It has since been moved to its rightful and logical place, the front.
The grave markers signifying their resting place are few and rather far between since the majority were given only that of a long-forgotten watery grave, and for them also, ‘lest we forget’ should be remembered.
G. Larsen, Nanaimo
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