I watched the Remembrance Day service on TV today. It made me think of my grandfather, who fought in the British army. He was in Salonika which never gets any airtime, even in shows about WWI.
The one thing I think is that although for the rest of us, the war ended on such and such a date, for the soldiers, it never ends. My grandfather couldn't stand to kill anything after he came to Canada, even when he had to put meat on the table.
They lived in the woods so they had to get their own meat. Grandpa had others shoot his game for him.
Another thing, he hated mules. They had a mule train in Salonika and he claimed the officers treated the mules better than the enlisted men. So a perfectly harmless animal became his bug-a-boo. Also, he was bitten by a mosquitoe and came down with malaria. This weakened his heart which was the reason he came to Canada.
He was also in France, almost killed, he was only saved because he had swapped belt buckles with an Australian. At one time he was reported killed and a note sent to my grandma, but it was another Albert Edward Smith who had been killed.
I don't want to go on and on, it's just that we should remember all those who can't sleep at night or other symptoms of war shock, etc, all the time, not just on one day. I often think of my grandfather and what he went through and am very grateful for his sacrafice of his mental health for us.