The story in Northern Life about war brides made me sit up
and reflect. My father volunteered to serve his country in 1940
and received the Volunteer Service Medal. He served all through
Europe in the Second World War and returned to Canada in 1945.
My parents met in England in 1940, and I came on the scene
in 1942. My mother and I came to Canada in April 1945 just
before my dad returned in September 1945.
It was very difficult for my mother to leave behind her
parents. She never again saw her mother who died in the early
1950s. She managed to see her father just twice as he died in
My mother was treated very well by my Canadian grandparents,
but life was not easy for her because, after all, she came to a
very different country. However, she has managed to cope and is
still alive at a very young 85 years of age.
The war was not easy on my Canadian or English grandparents
because they never knew from one day to the next if my father
was dead or alive. There was no e-mail in those days.
My mother has told me many stories about the bombing of
England and what she had to go through to go into London to
work and return home everyday. My Canadian grandmother was a
worry wart and had extra worry because my uncle also served
Canada during the war. My dad was like a lot of veterans, he
never talked about the war.
Needless to say, I am very proud of my parents and
grandparents for their sacrifice and service to both Canada and
England, and it took the story of the war brides to remind me
of their service and sacrifice.
I fully support our troops in Afghanistan, but to those
politicians who sent them there I remind them Afghanistan is
not the same as it was in Europe in the 1940s. To our
leaders  who sent troops to Afghanistan, I say war is not
sexy, it is pure hell.