Friday, November 11, 2011

true patriot love... there was never more.

heroes. everyone automatically assumes they have super powers and a cape. when in reality, they're regular men with an extraordinary amount of courage and selflessness.

this was taken before my grandfather (whom i called 'popeye', far right) left for WWII.
the gentleman on the left, with my uncle Harvey in his arms, didn't come home.

at a train station, waiting to deport. my grandfather is the second from the left.

my grandfather's medals, which he left to me.
these are my most prized possession, and mean the world to me.

his hat is on the top, his brother's is on the bottom, William Murchie (known to family and friends as Earl). he was a US paratrooper.

my grandfather, Albert Murchie.
my hero.


remembrance day is a very big day in my family. it's a day that i spent outside as a child, with my mother, grandfather, aunts and cousins, at the ceremonies, paying my respect. even at a young age, even if i didn't understand all of the details and hardships, i understood the importance of this day. each year, the importance grows more, and the respect grows stronger.
as does the sorrow.

i cannot begin to tell you what this man meant to me. as a child, he was my fun popeye, who was always there to 'rescue' me. i wasn't a fan of sitters, and i'd usually think up some excuse for him to come to my aid. and he always did, and we would spend the day together.
i remember his kindness, his laugh, his smirk, and the way he would sit in his rocking chair at the kitchen window and twiddle his thumbs. a habit i've inherited when i'm rocking and lost in thought.

though he died before i turned ten, he had already made such an impact on my life that today, twenty years later, he is still my hero and the man i compare men to. he had an amazing heart, was beyond generous and compassionate.

when i think of what he endured during the war, being a prisoner in the camps... what he would have been through, experiences, seen, heard... it twists my heart. and yet he returned to his family, and spent his life giving all he had.

today, and every year, when i hear amazing grace played on the bagpipes, i tear up. being a Murchie, of Scottish heritage, i've always loved bagpipes. and let's be honest, tartan. by the time the last post plays on the bugle, i'm a full blown mess, sniffling, tears running down my face. i do so without shame or embarrassment. i cry for the soldiers in front of me, who've lived through war and battles. i cry for the soldiers lost. i cry for the soldiers who are still fighting for peace. i cry for my popeye.

i look at the veterans before me, and wish i could go up to each one and thank them for all they did. let them know how appreciated they are. every day. it's impossible to thank every soldier, but i hope by seeing us out there, with a poppy over our hearts, they know it's out of love.

from an amazing Canadian band, the Trews, here's a song dedicated to our soldiers:

for any of you who might not have made it to a ceremony today, here's amazing grace on the bagpipes:

and finally, the last post, on bugle...

lest we forget.


  1. there are no words...that is SO touching, best remembrance story i have every heard.


  2. wow, truly amazing and touching. thank you for sharing. it makes you realize taht these are people that have families and lives just as much as you do. i'm sure your family is blessed for the service given.