Today is the day. 28th June 2012. The day, after 67 years, that the men of Bomber Command are finally given a fitting memorial.
It may be 67 years late, but we can’t do anything about the past, other than of course learn from it. This permanent memorial, built in Green Park in London, that Her Majesty The Queen will unveil at about 12 noon, is now here. It is and will be a fitting tribute to not only the 55,573 who died, but also to the ones who survived the war, who grew old, who passed away, who are still here.
And here we are today. In Green Park. Through modern tech, I can blog live from the Opening Ceremony. I am here, standing in the presence of greatness. All around me are old men, occasionally unsteady, some in wheel chairs, others still sprightly. All wear jackets with a badge or emblem on their breast pocket a Squadron badge, the Bomber Command Association badge…and above that are rows of medals.
A few have three or four medals 39-45 Star, Defence Medal, France/Germany Star, Victory Medal. a few more have a longer row. Some have blue and red striped DFC or AFC. Others wear commemorative medals given by the occupied nations – Operation Manna for instance.
All, irrespective of how many and what they have on the outside of their chest all today have something worth even more valuable than that. They have something inside their chests instead.
There’ll be more later during the day!