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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Movies  |  Press Releases and Film News  |  Last UK veteran of WWI trench battles dies at 111 « previous next »
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Author Topic: Last UK veteran of WWI trench battles dies at 111  (Read 746 times)
Allhallowsday
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« on: July 25, 2009, 12:27:55 PM »

Last UK veteran of WWI trench battles dies at 111 
LONDON – Harry Patch , Britain's last survivor of the trenches of World War I, was a reluctant soldier who became a powerful eyewitness to the horror of war, and a symbol of a lost generation.

Patch, who died Saturday at 111, was wounded in 1917 in the Battle of Passchendaele, which he remembered as "mud, mud and more mud mixed together with blood."

"Anyone who tells you that in the trenches they weren't scared, he's a damned liar: you were scared all the time," Patch was quoted as saying in a book, "The Last Fighting Tommy," written with historian Richard van Emden... 


http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090725/ap_on_re_eu/eu_britain_obit_patch
 
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Jim H
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2009, 02:21:37 PM »

He wasn't just the last UK trench veteran...  He was the last trench veteran period.  A big chunk of remembered history died with him. 

Goodbye, Patch.
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indianasmith
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2009, 08:59:35 PM »

So now they are all gone . . . the last three British vets of WWI, who laid a wreath together last November.

Only one American left now, and I think four others in the world.  I know they have lived to incredible ages, but a part of me is very sad for that loss.  I wrote my Master's Thesis on the Great War and have done a lot of research on it.

In 1995-96, I interviewed and videotaped eight living WWI vets here in Texas, all long gone now of course.  The youngest one was 96, the oldest 105.  One of them had a father who was born a slave, and three of them had fathers who served in the Civil War.  One of them had met Amelia Earhart, and heard Teddy Roosevelt speak.  Another had driven Captain Harry S. Truman across France in 1917 so the newly arriving artillery captain could catch up with his unit.

They lived through the most awful conflict in human history.  The butcher's bill in the trenches was inconceivable by modern standards.  I tell my high school students that America still has a collective neurosis about the Vietnam War, where we lost 58,000 lives in ten years - but the British, on the first day of the Battle of the Somme in 1916, lost 60,000 men in a SINGLE DAY.  That always gets there attention.

Sorry to wax on here, but this story is huge to me.  AllHallows, karma for posting it.
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