by Geoffrey Churchman
This is a photo taken yesterday at the parade organised using Peter Jackson’s collection of World War One vehicles. Although this is an American ambulance of WW1, this is particularly poignant for me as my father’s father was at Gallipoli in the Army Medical Corps. Even if he wasn’t directly in the line of fire it would have been no picnic attending to soldiers’ ghastly wounds. After the Gallipoli campaign was abandoned he spent another three years on the Western Front in France where he suffered from poison mustard gas — for the rest of his life.
Mt father was also in World War Two in Divisional Signals and was wounded in the Western Desert.
It makes us realise that whatever hardships we experience because of selfish, unpleasant and dishonest people in ordinary life, they pale into insignificance with the dreadful experiences of those who have been in front lines of war.
In Waikanae we honor the US Marines who were based here for three years during !942-1944, many of whom were subsequently killed in action during the Pacific War with Japan.