My mother was a Parry from Garndolbenmaen in north Wales. Yesterday, Marie and I went to the family reunion in Blaenau Ffestiniog. The journey was long. It was all the longer because I had not made it for a little while.
My cousin John from Nottingham had found out that our Uncle William had most probably been the victim of friendly fire during World War I. I knew he had been killed just before the time my mother had been born.
For years, apparently, my grandmother had taken the telegram at its word: he was only 'missing and presumed dead'. Her first language of course was not English. I wondered what it all meant to her. Poor woman!
'Friendly fire' just makes a waste a greater waste. It also makes the story very, very sad. I thought a lot about them all today as I lead worship in Efail Isaf Chapel. It's always a joy to be there.
10 months ago