Written on the 25/07/09 Just as I was attempting to do a belated tribute to the late Henry Allingham: Britain's, in fact the World's oldest man - and one of the last surviving members of the First World War, who passed away last week at the healthy old age of 113. We then get the awfully sad news of Harry Patch's passing today, fondly known as 'The Last Fighting Tommy,' Harry was the last survivor of trench warfare on the Western Front, and after many years of silence, he opened up about his time during the horrors of the Great war, becoming a great ambassador for the futility of modern warfare, organised murder' I think he said.
In November last year Harry, Henry and the late Bill Stone took part in the Armistice Day parade at the Cenotaph in Whitehall, it was a monumental day and one, which will now go down in history, it would be the last time these remarkable gents would do this. I have a great interest in the First World War,I find it staggering that in this day and age we had men who'd not only partaken in it, but were willingly and able to talk about it, and even confront it.
What was dubbed the war to end all wars, yet here we are in 2009 seeing flag covered coffins coming home from the desert, these great men will tell you their opinions of the war, and I share that, it ought to be settled over a table the dignified way.
The passing of these men is inevitable, they had a great innings so to speak, but it's still a very sad time, to lose the one living connection to the first world war, loses a great part of history we were able to connect with.
Rest in Peace, Harry and Henry. Sleep Well.