Friday, 11 November 2005

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

As I begin this entry ,the time is ~~10.57,on the eleventh of the eleventh ,it feels appropriate to tell you about an uncle ,I never met ,My Uncle Jack ,he was my Dads younger brother ,I never met him but he was often spoken ofwith lots of love,sometimes with lots of laughter because I gather he was quite mischievous,as a young boy,And quite a "leg puller",when in his youth .One story I remember (little pitchers have big ears ) my Granny telling ~~she was storing some apples for Christmas ,under her bed!! on a large tray and would check them from time to time for bad ones ! She realised though that the apples were disappearing so she ,became vigilant ,when Jack thought no one was watching ,he crept up the stairs ,unknown to him watched by his Mother from the stairs where she could see into her bedroom,he was lying on his belly ,half under the bed  with crunching noises coming from,under the bed Granny crept up and to use her words,"Slapped his arse ,and said caught you ,you little bugger !"she always told this story with a proud chuckle and wiped away a tear ,Uncle Jack was popular with every one ,had lots of girl friends untill he became engaged to "Aunty" Dorothy ,a lovely girl from the next village .

And then came the war ,my Uncle was called up along with thousands of other men to fight for his country .I dont recall any more of the story prior to this ,but he was badly shot at Dunkirk,dont know how he got home .but this happened in the May of 1940,he was hospitalized ,patched up ,and sent home to recover ,but in the November ,was due to go back to the hospital for more surgery .Uncle Jack had had all his private parts shot away,and according to an older cousin who sadly ,recently passed away,she could remember putting her fingers into the holes in his legs ! My Mother who was pregnant with me  then (Iwas born the following February ) asked Uncle Jack ,would he be home for Christmas ,his reply Oh yes Phylis,yes Ive got some thing planned ,A couple of days before he was due to return to the hospital ,he went over to the wash house across the yard at the back of the house and shot himself through the head ,my Granny heard the shot ,................after finding her son ,she ran the seventy yards or so to our house for my Dad ,who was home for his lunch .Icant do any more .

Aunty Dorothy I can remember ,I can clearly see some brown gloves she knitted for me ,so she must have been around for some time after ,and I can also remember every one getting excited at wedding photos of her ,She married an American air man and went back to America,with him after the war ,I do hope she had a happy life .

I can also remember standing by my Dads side at a service in our Church when the plaque was unveiled ,with the names of the men from our village ,who had lost their lives that we might be free,I wouldnt have been very old but I can ,still hear the last post being sounded,and singing Oh,Valiant Hearts.

                     Jan xx 

13 comments:

jaymact1 said...

Oh what a sad story it's hard to type with tears in your eyes. Love Joan.

ally123130585918 said...

Jan that is so sad......poor Uncle Jack,  he must have been terribly unhappy.....Ally

rachealcarol said...

Aww Jan that's a touching story. Oh Valiant Hearts was a wonderful choice.  We'll remember them all.  Take care Rache xx

jeanno43 said...

Brought tears to my eyes Jan, God bless your Uncle Jack and all others like him who suffered so terribly and who still suffer terribly from what happened to them.  We must never forget any of those who defended us and gave their all.

http://journals.aol.co.uk/jeanno43/JeannettesJottings/

icklemisssexpot said...

Also brought tears to my eyes...We do have to remember those who have been so traumatised by what they have seen, had done to them in war/conflict they take their own lives as well as those killed outright and those who have survived     caff xx

sarajanesmiles said...

Very moving entry my dear.  It leaves a lump in my throat to think of what those poor brave boys went through.  
((((()))))
Sara   x

nedmoh said...

That was very brave of you Jan writing todays entry to bring back memories we were told about.it must have been so sad for Granny and Grandad and all Uncle Jacks brothers and sisters.... Love Jeanx

faircolleen said...

thats such a heartbreaking entry. .I will remember your Uncle Jack on Sunday at the rememberance parade in my City.I bought a Poppy too for all those brave men

labdancer51 said...

That story is so sad Jan, it brought a tear to my eye, though I did smile at Uncle Jack eating the apples!

Sandra xxxx

jlocorriere05 said...

That's such a sad story. I suppose there are a lot of them around concerning the war. These people we are remembering weren't just soldiers, they'd been little children and had grown up with families until the war came and shattered their lives. Jeannette.  http://journals.aol.co.uk/jlocorriere05/Welcometomytravels

madcobug said...

That was a very sad story. Poor Unckle Jack and his mother who found it. It must have been terrible. She did have some good memories though. Helen

judithheartsong said...

it is good to post these memories. judi

jmoqueen said...

Oh jan (((((((((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))) you poor thing!!  Thank you for sharing those very sad memories with us :-)  Your poor grandma having to go through that!!