Archive for November 2012

 
 

She Said Yes! Soldier

Don and Mary were High School sweethearts. Everybody knew they were meant to be since the day they met. The twinkle in their eyes, the way they made each other smile, you just knew they had something special. They were part of the graduating class of 1943. Don had already been working throughout his High School years at the local steel factory, and was set for full-time work as soon as graduation passed. Mary, an aspiring nurse, was already set for her nursing studies.

Within a few months, they bought their first house. Everything seemed perfect until the unthinkable happened: Don received a notice that he was being drafted to Normandy. In the months leading to his deployment, Don consoled Mary’s worries about his safe return ensuring her that they would forever remain inseparable.

In June, 1944, Don shipped out. Within four months Mary was ordered to work in the steel factory alongside many women in their community.  Everything was being done to support the war effort. Propaganda was rampant that the troops were doing well; however, Mary refused to believe everything was OK. The only thing keeping her spirits up were the letters she kept receiving from Don. Although sporadic, the letters told stories of bravery from his fellow comrades. Never would he mention those fallen in battle. She tracked his progress on a map she kept in her study. Through the beachheads, to Caen, and across France, the journey kept her heart filled with hope.

All of the sudden, the letters stopped. A month went by with nothing. The Allies had apparently beaten through the frontlines and were claiming victory on several fronts. Day after day, Mary would go to the train station and wait to see the returning injured soldiers in crutches and stretchers. Don would never appear.

Finally, on a Saturday afternoon, a military vehicle pulled up to Mary’s house. Having seen this play through with several widows in the neighbourhood, Mary broke down crying before answering to the three knocks at the door. She wiped away her tears as she opened the door to the presence of two military men standing at the entrance. As she looked both men in the eyes, she fell to her knees with her hands over her face, crying. One of the men was carrying a folded flag. Without saying a word, she put her hand out expecting to receive a flag and her fallen love’s dog tags. The men stood there, without saying a word.

Suddenly, she heard a car door open. The two men began to sing “Day by day I’m falling more in love with you” , a new love song of the time. Stunned, she looked up only to see Don walking towards her, smiling. She looked at the two men singing, and the folded flag had an unravelled corner in which a diamond ring was hanging on the edge. Mary, stunned, wiped her eyes in disbelief. Don held out his hand as he helped her into his arms. As she stood crying on his shoulder he whispered into her ear: “Will you marry me?”.

From all of us at La Mine d’Or, we wish to thank all our Veterans and their families for their sacrifices.

Lest we forget,

The La Mine d’Or Family