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...and then there were none

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...and then there were none

Postby stomperrob » Wed Feb 24, 2010 7:53 pm

Canada's last surviving soldier from WWI has passed away. He did not see combat when it was discovered he had lied about his age and enlisted at the age of 15 and he spent the war in England. Early on in the war, it was common for boys to lie about their age when enlisting and those in command often turned a blind eye and many saw combat - however, when it became apparent the war was not going to be over by Christmas 1914 as expected, and there were an alarming number of casualties, it was decided it would not be wise (or popular back home) to be sending underage troops to their death.

John Babcock Obituary
7/23/1900 - 2/18/2010

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) - The oldest Canadian veteran of World War I has died at the age of 109.

John Babcock died Thursday in Spokane, where he has lived since 1932, according to a statement from Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

"I was deeply saddened to learn today of the death of John Babcock, Canada's last known First World War veteran," Harper said. "As a nation, we honor his service and mourn his passing."

Babcock had become a celebrity in recent years, especially in Canada.

"John Babcock was Canada's last living link to the Great War, which in so many ways marked our coming of age as a nation," Harper said. He said 650,000 men and women served in the Canadian forces during WWI.

"Today they are all gone," Harper said. "Canada mourns the passing of the generation that asserted our independence on the world stage and established our international reputation as an unwavering champion of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law."

He said a ceremony to honor Babcock will be held later.

The U.S. has one surviving World War I veteran. Frank Woodruff Buckles turned 109 earlier this month in West Virginia.

more: http://www.legacy.com/NS/Obituary.aspx?pid=139852970

RIP John :,-(
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby Omaha Red Sox » Wed Feb 24, 2010 8:17 pm

stomperrob wrote:RIP John :,-(


Indeed. Meeting any vet is an honor, but one from one of the WWs is rare.
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby scottaa1 » Wed Feb 24, 2010 8:21 pm

Rest easy, old soul, in God's eternal grace.

Boggles the mind to think of all the things he witnessed in his years.

RIP
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby Metroid » Thu Feb 25, 2010 10:14 am

scottaa1 wrote:Rest easy, old soul, in God's eternal grace.

Boggles the mind to think of all the things he witnessed in his years.

RIP

Absolutely. 109? Wow. 8-o

RIP indeed ;-D
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby stomperrob » Thu Feb 25, 2010 11:27 am

Metroid wrote:
scottaa1 wrote:Rest easy, old soul, in God's eternal grace.

Boggles the mind to think of all the things he witnessed in his years.

RIP

Absolutely. 109? Wow. 8-o

RIP indeed ;-D


I saw him interviewed on TV last year - both mentally & physically he was in amazing shape!
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby FantasySportsMaven » Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:41 pm

I hope there are lots more like him still around.
God Bless him and RIP.

At 53 I can't help having the feeling that I will be dieing soon.... and seeing stories about him at 109 give me hope to at least live another dozen years or so. ;-D
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby Cowboys 4 life » Fri Feb 26, 2010 12:50 am

FantasySportsMaven wrote:I hope there are lots more like him still around.
God Bless him and RIP.


Your hopes were shattered in sentence 3. "I was deeply saddened to learn today of the death of John Babcock, Canada's last known First World War veteran," Harper said. "As a nation, we honor his service and mourn his passing."


RIP John. 109 is a big number. 8-o
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby houstonherdfan » Wed Mar 10, 2010 9:29 pm

When I first got out of the Navy I worked on the farm of the only Medal of Honor winner in WW2 from West Virginia.

He raised horses for buggie racing.
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Re: ...and then there were none

Postby Munboy » Thu Mar 11, 2010 2:29 pm

houstonherdfan wrote:When I first got out of the Navy I worked on the farm of the only Medal of Honor winner in WW2 from West Virginia.

He raised horses for buggie racing.


Did you meet him through your time in the service or was it just a coincidence that you both served? Did he have good stories?

My stepdad, who recently passed away from lung cancer, served in Vietnam. He was a very quiet, gruff man who never talked about his time serving. The only thing I know about his time is that he was drafted into the war, and served out the four years and that he drove heavy machinery...bulldozers, backhoes, that type of thing. I really wished he would have shared his experience before he died, and I guess that's one reason why "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien is one of my favorite books.
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