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I like to answer that question.

My Uncle

My uncle was a machine gunner during World War II. He fought with the Canadian Forces in Belgium where he died. I never knew him. Growing up he was just the picture with some metals hanging on my grandparent's wall.

Since then I have learned that he was the ring leader that kept my aunts and uncles out of trouble during the depression by starting a farm. His farm gave my grandparent's large family jobs. He had a girl friend and once owned the land that the church I attend now stands. The land was donated to the church by my grandfather after his death and a small plaque to that affect hangs above the doors.

My Father

My father also fought in World War II with the 166, an artillery unit in the Royal Newfoundland Regiment. He now stumbles around because his war injuries have caught up to him. He is also quite hard of hearing, thanks in large part by standing next to the guns during the war.

But still, when he got a chance to go back to Italy with other veterans a few years ago, he jumped at the chance. This too took a toll on this health. There was a parade or two a day where the citizens of Italy turned out to greet their liberators once again, a wreath laying and a banquet in the evening. This went on for ten days as they travelled around Italy. Of course he had to take in every one of these events and paid for it when he got home with a trip to the local hospital.

Yesterday, he couldn't march with the veterans because his hip was bad. Still he made it to the War Memorial and took part. I brought my son along to watch.

My Brother-in-law

My brother-in-law is a captain in the Canadian Forces. He and the other members of the Canadian Forces might not make up a powerful army, but they are well respected around the world as peace keepers. Even the most powerful nation on Earth, expresses great disappointment when Canada is not able (or unwilling) to send a unit to be part of their coalition.

No matter how unfunded or over worked they are, only the Canadian Forces could get away with wearing a bright green uniform in a desert, just to distinguish themselves from other forces in the area. We can be proud of the Canadian Forces' contribution to world peace, but can they be proud of us when they have to use outdated equipment?

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