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"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Monday, November 8, 2010


Usually, on Remembrance Day, I bow my head to all those who died fighting for our freedom.
The crowd of soldiers, young and old are only a sea of faces to me.
I don't know any of them.
But this coming Remembrance Day, I now honor a familiar name.
He was Joseph Ambroise Quilty.
Born in 1889 to my great great grandparents Nichcolas and MaryAnn Quilty.
He was my great great Uncle.
He lived 28 years.
He's been dead now for 93 years.
He was a Private in The Canadian Infantry, 5th Battalion.
He was one of  72 men  in his unit killed on Vimy Ridge.
He was one of 3,600 Canadians killed in the 4 days of taking control of the ridge from the Germans.
It was a freezing cold Easter morning.
  I just learned of these facts in the spring and knew he was buried in France.
I went on the search to find out which of the many cemeteries for the Canadian soldiers he was buried in.
I found out through the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
It's here amongst these stones that he lies.
In the Nine Elms Military Cemetery, Thelus, France
This, along with other cemeteries in the area, are deeply cared for, revered and visited by thousands every year.
Someday I hope to visit Uncle Joseph's grave and give thanks in person.


the wild magnolia said...

Great post and so wonderful to honor a soldier from your own family.

For some reason, the top photo does not open. I will check back later.

Love you blog!

farmlady said...

This is a lovely post. It reminds me of an uncle I never knew. His name was Bert Fracchia and he died over there somewhere too. I knew his parents and his brother and sister but never thought what it must be like to loose a son in war.
You have honored this man well. I think it is my turn to do the same with my kin.
Thank you for reminding me....

myletterstoemily said...

what a sweet tribute to your uncle joseph.