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one of the lost boys
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Normally email chain letters get binned before I read them but this one is closer to my heart

Thanks for reading


The average British soldier is 19 years old…..he is a short haired, well built lad who, under normal circumstances is considered by society as half man, half boy. Not yet dry behind the ears and just old enough to buy a round of drinks but old enough to die for his country – and for you.

He’s not particularly keen on hard work but he’d rather be grafting in Afghanistan than unemployed in the UK. He recently left comprehensive school where he was probably an average student, played some form of sport, drove a ten year old rust bucket, and knew a girl that either broke up with him when he left, or swore to be waiting when he returns home. He moves easily to rock and roll or hip-hop or to the rattle of a 7.62mm machine gun.


He is about a stone lighter than when he left home because he is working or fighting from dawn to dusk and well beyond. He has trouble spelling, so letter writing is a pain for him, but he can strip a rifle in 25 seconds and reassemble it in the dark. He can recite every detail of a machine gun or grenade launcher and use either effectively if he has to. He digs trenches and latrines without the aid of machines and can apply first aid like a professional paramedic. He can march until he is told to stop, or stay dead still until he is told to move.

He obeys orders instantly and without hesitation but he is not without a rebellious spirit or a sense of personal dignity. He is confidently self-sufficient. He has two sets of uniform with him: he washes one and wears the other. He keeps his water bottle full and his feet dry. He sometimes forgets to brush his teeth, but never forgets to clean his rifle. He can cook his own meals, mend his own clothes and fix his own hurts. If you are thirsty, he'll share his water with you; if you are hungry, his food is your food. He'll even share his life-saving ammunition with you in the heat of a firefight if you run low.

He has learned to use his hands like weapons and regards his weapon as an extension of his own hands. He can save your life or he can take it, because that is his job - it's what a soldier does. He often works twice as long and hard as a civilian, draw half the pay and have nowhere to spend it, and can still find black ironic humour in it all. There's an old saying in the British Army: 'If you can't take a joke, you shouldn't have joined!'

He has seen more suffering and death than he should have in his short lifetime. He has wept in public and in private, for friends who have fallen in combat and he is unashamed to show it or admit it. He feels every bugle note of the 'Last Post' or 'Sunset' vibrate through his body while standing rigidly to attention. He's not afraid to 'Bollock' anyone who shows disrespect when the Regimental Colours are on display or the National Anthem is played; yet in an odd twist, he would defend anyone's right to be an individual. Just as with generations of young people before him, he is paying the price for our freedom. Clean shaven and baby faced he may be, but be prepared to defend yourself if you treat him like a kid.
He is the latest in a long thin line of British Fighting Men that have kept this country free for hundreds of years. He asks for nothing from us except our respect, friendship and understanding. We may not like what he does, but sometimes he doesn't like it either - he just has it to do.. Remember him always, for he has earned our respect and admiration with his blood.

And now we even have brave young women putting themselves in harm's way, doing their part in this tradition of going to war when our nation's politicians call on us to do so.

 

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The Angry Pasty Muncher
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ALL TOO TRUE:thumbleft::thumbleft:
 

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That is so true it hurts.
When I was in I got £48 per day, as a Corporal, that works out at £2 per hour.
O.K. We got more on Active duty, but no where near Minimum wage.
Now I see the Yobs and wonder WHY DID I BOTHER.
 

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The Angry Pasty Muncher
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6,170 Posts
That is so true it hurts.
When I was in I got £48 per day, as a Corporal, that works out at £2 per hour.
O.K. We got more on Active duty, but no where near Minimum wage.
Now I see the Yobs and wonder WHY DID I BOTHER.

What was you in i was in RAC QRH (briefly)
 

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almost human !!!
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What was you in i was in RAC QRH (briefly)

What a small world. I was in RAC QRIH for 10 yrs, left straight after the gulf war Mk 1. Also I was did a disco last night in the QRH sgts mess.Trev Gray's dine out.
 

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O.K. if a soldier gets £100 per day, he is being paid £4 per hour to risk his life that is S$13T.
 

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almost human !!!
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The men & woman who go to careers offices of any of the Armed forces don’t go there for the money, they go there primarily, through a desire to serve Queen & Country. I dare say not one of them bothered to ask what the wages were when then enlisted. I know I didn’t. The initial training will soon sort out the ones who really want to be there through desire and the ones who are there for financial gain.

As much as I agree that our service men & woman deserve more, it cannot be said they work for peanuts. Most of my friends from my time in the Army, took a reduction in income when returning to civilian life.

You correctly say someone on £100.00 a day is only getting £4.00 an hour, but don’t forget other employers don’t pay their employees 24/7 365 days a year. I am still in constant contact with the forces and I hear many different gripes & groans, about many different reasons, but not about the pay.
 

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The men & woman who go to careers offices of any of the Armed forces don’t go there for the money, they go there primarily, through a desire to serve Queen & Country. I dare say not one of them bothered to ask what the wages were when then enlisted. I know I didn’t. The initial training will soon sort out the ones who really want to be there through desire and the ones who are there for financial gain.

As much as I agree that our service men & woman deserve more, it cannot be said they work for peanuts. Most of my friends from my time in the Army, took a reduction in income when returning to civilian life.

You correctly say someone on £100.00 a day is only getting £4.00 an hour, but don’t forget other employers don’t pay their employees 24/7 365 days a year. I am still in constant contact with the forces and I hear many different gripes & groans, about many different reasons, but not about the pay.
I only mentioned that because most civilians would not realise that the soldier is paid for a 24 hour period, so unlike their job where £100 per 8 hour shift might be considered fair for a 24 hour period facing life and death certainly sorts the men from the boys.
 

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almost human !!!
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757 Posts
Her hair was up in a pony tail,
Her favourite dress tied with a bow.
Today was Daddy's Day at school,
And she couldn't wait to go.

But her mommy tried to tell her,
That she probably should stay home.
Why the kids might not understand,
If she went to school alone.

But she was not afraid;
She knew just what to say.
What to tell her classmates
Of why he wasn't there today.

But still her mother worried,
For her to face this day alone.
And that was why once again,
She tried to keep her daughter home.

But the little girl went to school
Eager to tell them all.
About a dad she never sees
A dad who never calls.

There were daddies along the wall in back,
For everyone to meet.
Children squirming impatiently,
Anxious in their seats

One by one the teacher called
A student from the class.
To introduce their daddy,
As seconds slowly passed.

At last the teacher called her name,
Every child turned to stare.
Each of them was searching,
For a man who wasn't there.

'Where's her daddy at?'
She heard a boy call out.
'She probably doesn't have one,'
Another student dared to shout.

And from somewhere near the back,
She heard a daddy say,
'Looks like another deadbeat dad,
Too busy to waste his day.'

The words did not offend her,
As she smiled up at her Mom.
And looked back at her teacher,
Who told her to go on.

And with hands behind her back,
Slowly she began to speak.
And out from the mouth of a child,
Came words incredibly unique.

'My Daddy couldn't be here,
Because he lives so far away.
But I know he wishes he could be,
Since this is such a special day.

And though you cannot meet him,
I wanted you to know.
All about my daddy,
And how much he loves me so.

He loved to tell me stories
He taught me to ride my bike.
He surprised me with pink roses,
And taught me to fly a kite.

We used to share fudge sundaes,
And ice cream in a cone.
And though you cannot see him.
I'm not standing here alone.

'Cause my daddy's al ways with me,
Even though we are apart
I know because he told me,

He'll forever be in my heart'
With that, her little hand reached up,
And lay across her chest
Feeling her own heartbeat,
Beneath her favorite dress.

And from somewhere here in the crowd of dads,
Her mother stood in tears.
Proudly watching her daughter,
Who was wise beyond her years.

For she stood up for the love
Of a man not in her life.
Doing what was best for her,
Doing what was right.

And when she dropped her hand back down,
Staring straight into the crowd.
She finished with a voice so soft,
But its message clear and loud.

'I love my daddy very much,
he's my shining star.
And if he could, he'd be here,
But heaven's just too far.

You see he is a Brittish soldier
And died just this past year
When a roadside bomb hit his convoy
And taught Britians to fear.

But sometimes when I close my eyes,
it's like he never went away.'
And then she closed her eyes,
And saw him there that day.

And to her mothers amazement,
She witnessed with surprise.
A room full of daddies and children,
All starting to close their eyes.

Who knows what they saw before them,
Who knows what they felt inside.
Perhaps for merely a second,
They saw him at her side.

'I know you're with me Daddy,'
To the silence she called out.
And what happened next made believers,
Of those once filled with doubt.

Not one in that room could explain it,
For each of their eyes had been closed.
But there on the desk beside her,
Was a fragrant long-stemmed rose.


And a child was blessed, if only for a moment,
By the love of her shining star.
And given the gift of believing,
That heaven is never too far.
 

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Nice one Ash.
 
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