Moose Country Minute – November 9 2013

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Every year when Remembrance Day rolls around, I think of my father, Matt, who left this world at a younger age than I am today and who has now been gone for 33 years.
When he was 23 years old, he and his cousin, Daniel, left their adjacent wheat farms in southern Saskatchewan and set off to join the Royal Canadian Air Force. Both were members of Bomber Command flying missions over Germany where the mortality rate among the crews was 45%
So it was about 50-50 if you’d make it home.
Cousin Daniel didn’t.
Hence, up in the northeastern part of Saskatchewan is Bonokoski Lake, named in memory of Daniel. I flew in there years ago in a bush plane, and planted a plaque on a rock in a quiet bay.
It was the least I could do.
My father never talked about his war, but I knew that he was troubled by the thought that he dropped bombs on innocent civilians, and was haunted my memories of anti-aircraft fire and black skies.
But at least he made it home.
We fished a bit together in the later years of his life, but the war was not a subject to be discussed.
But he did go, and he did his duty, and he paid the price of being brave and selfless.
Which is something to always remember.

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