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Here by Glimpses Known - Memorials

 
In every French town or village I've been in there is a monument aux morts, a war memorial. Often they cite the villagers who went off to defend their country and fell in battle, but just recently, I noticed two that are far more "personal" in that they commemorate a tragedy that happened where the monument is erected.

This first one is alongside a road I've taken many times over the years, but tucked, as it is, behind a hedge, I never noticed it until I took a wrong turn on my way to the butcher and had to back up.  
 
"Here fell Maurice Renne, victim of Nazi barbary, August 20, 1944."

This one I've seen several times--I drive past it at least once every week--but never really looked at, not until after reading the one above.

"Here, on August 26, 1944, the Germans shot down [list of names -- all members of the French Forces of the Interior
 ...Hommage to the F.F.I who died for the Liberation"

I was born to a different era, a different country, but it still moves me to see these cold, angular stones erected in place of men whose days of laughing and loving were cut short because of war.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
frigg
Jul. 31st, 2011 12:35 pm (UTC)
*nods*

And it is good that they are there, so that we won't forget.
mnfaure
Aug. 3rd, 2011 08:32 am (UTC)
It is too bad that so many people have selective memories to go along with selective sight, choosing to ignore what is right in front of them. :(
asakiyume
Jul. 31st, 2011 01:46 pm (UTC)
I see this impulse in temporary roadside shrines to accident victims. People put up wooden crosses and leave flowers or other items. --It's not the same scale but a similar feeling, I think...
mnfaure
Aug. 3rd, 2011 08:31 am (UTC)
*Nods*

I always pray for the families and grieving loved ones and friends of the accident victim when I pass those. There is more immediacy to them than the memorials of long ago wars.
kmkibble75
Aug. 3rd, 2011 01:13 am (UTC)
One almost feels guilty about how horror-free most of our lives have been, given what past generations went through.
mnfaure
Aug. 3rd, 2011 08:27 am (UTC)
I know exactly what you mean. And I feel guilty that I have become inured to the monuments, walking or driving past them without truly seeing them. :(

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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