Today I went to the sad double, funeral of a Lieutenant Commander and his wife. I was asked by the care home to show his daughter how he had answered the questions. The last one in particular.
The funeral was a gunshot funeral, which was a new experience for me. Have ministers as parents, I have been to many funerals, none like this. For a start, there were gunshots fired to salute the life of the man. The other major difference, was the fact it was a double funeral. Both him and his wartime sweetheart had passed away within a few days of each other. Maybe it is true, you can die of a broken heart.
After the funeral, with the guidance of the matron of the home introduced me to their daughter. I explained to her that I was doing a project at university and that I had met her parents. I showed her the answers he had given one of which was that he regretted not spending a lot of time with his daughter and that if he could tell future generations one thing, that he would say that they should cherish the time they have with their family, because life will flash by and you’ll regret it later. The daughter broke down crying and gave me a hug. I can only hope that I did the right thing by listening to the nursing home.
This project has had a major impact, and it’s not just me that it is affecting. I think that once I reach one hundred service men and women, I will publish this as a first volume.