Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Harry Patch

World War I veteran Harry Patch will be buried tomorrow. The former plumber, who fought at the battle of Passchendaele in 1917, gave a memorable interview to Today reporter Mike Thomson in 2005.

Thom Yorke, lead singer of the band Radiohead, was moved by the interview to write a tribute to the veteran, inspired by Harry Patch's words.

The song can be downloaded from the Radiohead website - all profits will go to the Royal British Legion.

The lyrics are:

Harry Patch (in memory of)

I am the only one that got through
The others died where ever they fell
It was an ambush
They came up from all sides
Give your leaders each a gun and then let them fight it out themselves
I've seen devils coming up from the ground
I've seen hell upon this earth
The next will be chemical but they will never learn

I'm so sad that the last three WW1 survivors have all died within weeks of each other, I feel like I've lost a last link with my grandfathers and great uncles who all fought in The Great War, one, a footballer, came home minus a leg, another lost part of his skull and survived early brain surgery.

Will we never learn?


Blogger Pam said...

A moving clip Anna of Harry Patch, who seemed like a living archive of some sort, a repository of all the stories from that war, perhaps in a way for all wars. He was there and testified to the horrors. Thanks for posting.

2:06 pm  
Blogger Pat said...

It's up to us to make sure each following generation will remember them.

5:03 pm  
Blogger Jan said...

The memories are precious. They DESERVE to be treasured for ever. That's the way we can keep those marvellous old soldiers alive.

10:18 pm  
Blogger Rouchswalwe said...

To have lived with those memories of war for over 90 years! What a strong man he must have been.

12:08 am  

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