Funeral Procession From Ottawa!

cirillopatriceFor the greater part of today the CBC have been giving wide spread coverage to the tragic death of Cpl Cirillo. Politicians, one after another appeared on camera to tell of their fearful experiences and to praise the bravery of the security services. They spoke at length about the death of Cpl Cirillo and the cowardly act of Zehaf Bibeau.  The cameras followed the funeral procession from Ottawa to Hamilton. It was indeed a very impressive response to see Canadians line the highway to pay their last respects to this fallen soldier. To hear the many voices singing our national anthem “Oh Canada”. So moving and stirring, the tremendous feelings of emotion, grief, tears, loss and such great pride. Yet it seems to me we have an imbalance here. We are Canadian and we stand with our troops, and while this is indeed how we must and should conduct ourselves over this sad and tragic death, I have to wonder if some of our politicians had the same aims. Cpl Cirillo has become a name known all across Canada,I realize it occurred in our Capital city. Location is important but it leaves me wondering how many Canadians can name the other soldier killed in Quebec? Should our politicians and the CBC not give equal coverage to the death of WO Patrice Vincent?  He was deliberately  run down and killed by another radical Islamist named Rouleau. Yet one really had to pay close attention to the news today just to hear Patrice’s name mentioned. I think it is right to do honour to one fallen soldier, but is equally and  seemingly wrong to forget the other. I doubt everyone will agree with my sentiments, and I do understand, it is a difficult and hurtful subject to broach. Nevertheless, two soldiers died this week and they both deserve to be remembered equally, regardless of how they died. Both were good men both were defenders of our freedom. In the words of the Royal Canadian Legion “We shall remember them”

God Bless and keep reading

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Politically Correct????

twintowerscanada_flagI realize with the recent tragic events that took place in Quebec and Ottawa, that most Canadians are very angry. I’m very angry,  when a man can run down and kill a Canadian soldier, and another can shoot  an unarmed Canadian soldier in cold blood. When these scum can do such deeds in broad day light on Canadian soil. Then rampage through the Houses of Parliament with a loaded rifle intent on killing our leaders, we have good reason to be angry. Enough is enough, it is time we toughened our attitude to such people. Naturally we all agree in the principles of politically correctness, such as referring to our First nations people,treating women with equality and respect, treating the gay community with the same respect, the disabled, the mentally handicaps etc etc. Those are things we should all do. However when someone tells me I can’t say “Merry Christmas” but instead should say Happy Holidays. When someone tells me I mustn’t say God Bless when a person sneezes. When they state the reason given for these rules, is it might offend??? that’s when I draw the line, that is when I’m offended. When I’m being told to change my ways, to stop using terms that have been used for centuries. This is surely taking politically correctness to the extremes. It is time we stood up for our values, followed our traditions, celebrations and beliefs. If that offends some, well they can always go to a country that does not use such hateful terms as Happy Christmas. Finally regarding the RCMP watching 90 suspected Islamic fanatics, its time to stop watching and arrest them. Jail them or deport them, do not wait until they commit a murder of an Innocent person or persons  before we decide to act. We have already done that and two soldiers are dead, no more being politically correct lets stand up for our Nation. We must truly Stand on Guard for Canada.

GOD BLESS and keep reading.

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Not A Great Day 22nd Oct 2014

prince_county_hospitalcanada_flagThe day started out badly and then went from bad to worse. First thing this morning I had to take my wife Linda, to the emergency at the Prince County Hospital with severe abdominal pains. It turned out her appendix was inflamed and she was immediately booked for surgery. The surgery took place at approximately 8 pm tonight, she is in recovery now and I’m told everything went well. While I was sitting by her bed this morning another incident was taking place in Ottawa. A cowardly shooting of an unarmed soldier standing guard duty at the National cenotaph, the young soldier died from his wounds. The terrorist then gained entry to the Parliament Buildings and more shots were fired, the terrorist was gunned down.  It is unknown if other gunmen are still in the area as bits of news filters down through the media. Large parts of the Capital City remain in lock down condition. Quite a dreadful day indeed, we can only hope the remaining terrorists are brought to heal very soon. This is a wake up call for Canada, but I have all confidence that Canada is wide awake and we shall prevail over these cowardly scum. Scum who have been given the privilege to live in this great land and to call themselves Canadians. Send them back to where they came from or to ISIS where they want to belong. As for my poor Linda, hopefully she will get home in the next couple of days. Its time for bed for me, its been a long day, I’m sure things will look    better in the morning. Good Night Sleep Tight.

Next Morning 23rd Oct 2014. Well things do look better today, Linda is doing well and I’ll be off to see her shortly. On the radio I heard that Arsenal beat Anderlecht 2-1 in the European Champions league. So the day is indeed off to a go start.

God Bless and keep reading

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Preface to Lily & Me. In Remembrance.

001002As I prepare to launch my latest book “Chapter XXI. Armageddon” I thought a re-post of the preface from my first book might be of interest to some of my readers. As we are once again nearing Remembrance Day,  and as it was on such a day in 1997 the inkling of an idea to write this first book began. Lily & Me, tells the story of my first sixteen years of life. It tells of the hardships of war, gas masks, ration books, adoption, shortages,  the blitz and bomb shelters, the many schools I attended. The compilation of those sad and sometimes happy moments recorded in the pages of this book. It is a history of my country my city my family and of me.

 

Preface
On November 11th Remembrance Day in 1997, I was a guest speaker at a banquet in the local branch of the Royal Canadian Legion. Listening to other speakers, it gradually became clear that we were remembering the Second World War and the Korean War, but almost nothing about the First World War. In fairness, we had no surviving branch members from that first terrible conflict. I thought about my father serving in
France from 1916 until the end of the war. Did I not have a duty to say something about him? Sadly, knowing so little of his war service, I merely made a respectful mention to the veterans about that ‘War to end all wars.’
It was at this moment that I became painfully aware of how little I knew, not only about my father, but my whole family. It was at that moment that the first seed of an idea to write this book was planted. Now, at the dawn of the 21st Century, I set out to draft my first page.
This is a story of my early life and of the people involved in it, from the darkest days of Britain at war to the sunny days on the Isle of Wight, and to the morning I left Donegal Quay, on the Belfast docks, to join the Royal Navy
The story is how I remember the events in my early life. I have tried to make it as honest and accurate as memory allows. I have spent months researching books, digging through government archives, surfing the Internet.  I asked questions, then more questions from family members all over the world. I inquired from New Zealand to Australia, Ireland to Canada and Prince Edward Island to the Isle of Wight.
Ultimately, this is my story told through my eyes, as a child, a boy, and young man. There is no intent on my part to either criticize or lay blame.  That would make no sense. It is the past, nothing about it can be changed, nor would I wish anything to be changed.  Those first sixteen years were far from being the happiest of my life.  Now older and hopefully wiser, I find I still hold a great fondness for both Lily and Ben.
In the beginning, I shall take you back to the birth of my parents, tracing how their lives came together in Belfast, and the hardships, poverty and two World Wars they were to see during those tumultuous years.  I will take you to my birth on January 15, 1939, and my mother’s death on December 26, 1939, then to my first steps into manhood on March 15, 1955. That was the day I marched off to join the Royal Navy as a Boy Seaman 2nd class.
H.M.S Ganges was a place that claimed to turn boys into men, and I would quickly learn the merits of that claim. Forty-five years later, I have to say that the Ganges claim was well founded.  I consider myself a survivor of a most severe system, be it for better or worse, now vanished forever.  I’m left with the memories of those terrible, harsh, cruel and sometimes happy times.  I would never wish to live through them again, but they will forever remain, to the end of my days, a proud and wonderful memory.
Hope you enjoyed the reading of this article.
God Bless and keep reading

 

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Trafalgar Days.

victoryToday is 21st October a day to remember, On this date in 1805 the Royal Navy defeated the combined fleets of France and Spain ending any hopes of Napoleon’s invasion plans for Britain. Admiral Horatio Nelson commanded 27 ships of the line against 33 ships of France and Spain. In the battle of Trafalgar not a single British ship was lost. The enemy lost 22 ships and several others were captured, and there was a heavy loss of life. Nelson himself fell during the battle, shot by a sniper and later died from his wounds. He has been hailed as the Royal Navy’s greatest sailor and his name even today remains the most famous and well known throughout the ranks of today’s young sailors . I have walked the decks of HMS Victory, Nelsons flag ship which is still on display in Portsmouth dockyards. It was until quite recently the oldest warship still in commission in the Royal Navy. It is now held in trust by the National British heritage museums. Who has not heard of Trafalgar Square in London? where Nelsons Column stands proudly watching over England. Having served in the Royal Navy has always stood me in good stead, I remain a proud and grateful sailor/veteran and I still cherish the memories of my days at sea. Rule Britannia,

Bravo Zulu.  God Bless and keep reading

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Hitching a Ride in Uniform

bubble carisetta-minibubble car 26bb2fd3940ca3056734afc0dd0b36dd7 My old shipmate gave me the idea for today’s blog, He mentioned our long ago Navy days of hitch hiking in uniform. Of course we were an irresistible lot in those days, it was very hard for a person to drive by without stopping to pick up us poor wee sailors!!!!!! In yesterdays blog I talked about the difficulties of travelling by British Railways. I didn’t always go by train, some times due to the lack of finances I had to use my trusty thumb. Hitching in the late 1950’s early 1960’s was still a safe and a fairly reliable means of travel, especially in uniform. It was  often faster than the train! I enjoyed rides in a large variety of different vehicles. Some times posh Jags, some times ratty Minis, once  a Royal Navy ambulance, another time a farmers hay wagon, a bit slow. However the most memorable ride was in a BMW Bubble car (as in the photos). I must have been considerably thinner in those days, because if you look closely at the seating capacity, you might wonder how three people could fit into that little car. I was amazed when it stopped for me because there was already a young man and woman in the basic two seater. Nevertheless, I was squeezed in the middle of the front seat and carried on to the next town. I had to be very careful not to move too much, the young lady might have taken offense!!!or maybe the guy!!!it was indeed an intimate ride. One thing I never completely understood about those days was the Plymouth/Portsmouth transit. On weekends many sailors stationed in Plymouth hitch hiked to Portsmouth, and sailors stationed in Portsmouth hitch hiked to Plymouth?????? I guess the Navy made a point of never stationing us were our wives/girl friends lived. God Bless and keep reading.

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On The Rails

trainThe photo of the old steam engine posted on FB by my nephew from Bristol spike a memory from my distant past. Sailors today can hop on a plane and be home an hour later. Heck! they can even get home for a weekend. In my time in the Navy we started leave in the morning around 0800 hrs. Caught the Portsmouth train to London, it was known as a milk run because it stopped at every station along the route. And believe me there were many stations along the route. I arrived in London about noon time, had lunch and made my way via the tube trains to Liverpool Street station. Then at approximately 3.30pm the  train pulled out heading for Heysham and the Belfast ferry. We arrived at 11 pm and had to walk about a half mile hauling our luggage to reach the steamer. It left at about midnight and arrived at the Belfast docks  in the early morning hours (6 am). I then had to walk up town to wait for a bus to take me on the final leg of my journey . Sailors pay being what it was we couldn’t afford taxis. I arrived at my front door at about 7.30 am. I was dirty and tired but glad to have arrived home. The Navy allowed us 14 days leave three times a year, Easter, Summer and Christmas, but at least they realized the guys from places like Belfast needed travelling time,  we actually had 16 days leave, two days for travel. Rough times indeed, no so bad going home knowing I had 14 days leave ahead, but Oh Boy!!! hell coming back.

God Bless and keep reading

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Another Poor Arsenal Performance

arsenal pennentOh Dear!! another miserable performance by Arsenal, they only manage to tie Hull City 2-2, and only by the skin of their teeth. They scored first early in the first half and the game looked like plain sailing for the gunners. A couple of minutes later Hull equalized. In the opening minutes of the second half Hull scored again to lead the game 2-1. Luckily for Arsenal there was six minutes of stoppage time played and they managed to rescue a point with a last minute goal. Its not good enough for a team of Arsenals caliber, they presently sit sixth in the league table when at this time last year they were the league leaders. Come on Gunners we want and need better from you.

God Bless and keep reading

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The Provincial PC’s–The Blue Ripple!!!!

Gail SheaI can’t believe the Provincial Conservatives have once more dug up a possible Leadership candidate from the bottom of the barrel!!!Isn’t it time someone told them that the cream rises to the top, and to get off the bottom looking for a leader. They have to date come up with some real losers, Shea only being the latest. Surely they should be looking within their own membership for a new bright,young up and coming leader. A fresh face with no baggage no history and certainly no ties to Steven Harper. I will re-post below a blog I sent out sometime ago on this subject, it illustrates how little has changed within the PC party of PEI

The PC Blue Wave!!!!Seeing Red

Is the good ship SS Leaderless riding the crest of the Blue Wave? or is it sailing into disaster on the rocks of Election Rumour???. The latter appears to be the most likely outcome. Sadly the captain and crew seem completely incapable of steering to safer waters. Many of the crew are already donning life jackets and jumping ship. Blake Doyle, the party president, jumped a few days ago, The only real hope to lead the party to a victory in the next election was Olive Crane but she was forced to walk the plank ( the crew have lots of planks). When that happened Hal Perry saw red!!he was so angry he joined the enemy. In the turbulent waters of politics the PC’s have struggled to right the ship with some really stupid ideas. They first talked of bringing back Horace Carver to take the helm, Maybe he was smart enough to turn them down. More recently they have come up with the most unlikely candidate to right the ship. Kevin MacAdam, he is young, handsome and a master of patronage. This is the guy who was appointed by Peter MaKay to ACOA with a salary of $130,000 per year. He has been drawing that salary for the last three years while not actually working for ACOA. Instead, he has been studying French in Ottawa.  If the PC’s think MacAdam is the answer they had better batten down the hatches and shut the water tight doors, the rocks are near. It pains me to say it, but even Robert Ghiz is smart enough to see the rocks ahead. It is his opportunity to re-launch the leaking Liberal ship into another four years of plain sailing through deficit seas.  The Blue Wave is about to wash away the hopes and dreams of a new government for Islanders in the next election. It seems almost inevitable we will see a Sea of Red while the Blue Wave crashes onto the shore washing away the fading colours of Blue, Green and Orange.. If there is to be even a Blue ripple of hope for the PC party they need to find a new smart young leader and stop wasting time looking to has beens such as Carver and MacAdam. How about someone like Brad Trivers? he is new, young, smart and at least as handsome as MacAdam!!!!! And that is how I sea the tide coming and going

God Bless and keep reading

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A Bit of British Humour!!!!

british humourEnough Church Stuff!! How about a bit of humour for a change????

ALERTS TO THREATS IN 2014 EUROPE
From JOHN CLEESE
The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Syria and Iraq and have therefore raised their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” The English have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from “Tiresome” to “A Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.
The Scots have raised their threat level from “Pissed Off” to “Let’s get the Bastards.” They don’t have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.
The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from “Run” to “Hide.” The only two higher levels in France are “Collaborate” and “Surrender.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France ‘s white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country’s military capability.
Italy has increased the alert level from “Shout Loudly and Excitedly” to “Elaborate Military Posturing.” Two more levels remain: “Ineffective Combat Operations” and “Change Sides.”
The Germans have increased their alert state from “Disdainful Arrogance” to “Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs.” They also have two higher levels: “Invade a Neighbor” and “Lose.”
Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels ..
The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.
Australia , meanwhile, has raised its security level from “No worries” to “She’ll be right, Mate.” Two more escalation levels remain: “Crikey! I think we’ll need to cancel the barbie this weekend!” and “The barbie is cancelled.” So far no situation has ever warranted use of the last final escalation level.
Regards,
John Cleese ,
British writer, actor and tall person
And as a final thought – Greece is collapsing, the Iranians are getting aggressive, and Rome is in disarray. Welcome back to 430 BC.
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