Image courtesy of Natalie Long
Image courtesy of Natalie Long
12 months ago we #putoursticksout as the ice hockey community around the world were united with that in Canada in grieving the tragedy of the bus crash that took the lives of 16 young people, their coaches and advisors and forever changed the lives of their families as well as those of the 13 survivors from the Humboldt Broncos hockey team.
This was the horrific embodiment of every parent’s worst nightmare and it really struck a chord deep within me that I still feel today. In the last year, I have continued to follow the stories of that night and the recovery of those who survived the crash, celebrating with them every small step along the way. This devastating event has been heartbreaking, but has also seen incredible moments of inspiration: Green Shirt Day was inspired by the decision by one player, Logan Boulet, that he wanted to register as an organ donor and in telling his parents that that was his choice should anything happen, helped save 6 lives even as his was lost.
Today our sticks might not be out, but our thoughts are with those 29 families forever impacted by those events and we continue to hope and pray for healing for them.
I am not a badge of honour,
I am not a racist smear,
I am not a fashion statement to be worn but once a year,
I am not glorification of conflict or of war.
I am not a paper ornament or a token,
I am more.
I am a loving memory of a father or son,
A mother, a sister or daughter each and every one.
I am paper or enamel,
I am old or shining new,
I am a way of saying thank you,
To every one of you.
I am a single poppy, a reminder to you all,
That courage, faith and honour will stand where heroes fall.
– Paul Hunter –
After a week of topsy-turvy political instability that continues to rock the UK, today has been a day to put the confusion to one side and spend time in silent contemplation. Today marks 100 years since the battle of the Somme and the selfless sacrifice made by thousands of young men as they fought to bring an end to World War 1.
Today, hundreds of young men have formed a fitting tribute to the fallen across the UK – London, Glasgow, Manchester, Bristol, Leicester and many more. Dressed in the military uniforms of World War 1, these men have gathered at train stations and city centres during the morning rush of commuters heading to work and have been silently handing out business cards bearing the name, rank, battalion, age and date of death of some of the young men who died at the Somme.
Below are just a handful of the photos flooding social media this morning, please take time to have a look at the others. These images are powerful; they are heart-wrenching; they are a poignant memorial. An emotional, sobering, thought-invoking reminder of the thousands who would leave loved ones at home and never return:
“When you get home, tell them of us, and say:
For their tomorrow, we gave our today”
– John Maxwell Edmonds
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