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You're a long time dead.

Just a quick update really to give thanks to everyone that turned up on the day to give me a hand to go up and start clearing and tidying up the war graves behind the Vulcan in Bolton and believe it or not someone has actually been up since my last video and they’ve done a bit of work up there so whoever that was, well done and thank you very much. We put a massive dent in some of the stuff today and all of the graves that we identified have now got 360 access so you can actually see who's buried in them and you can go and visit them and read the information as to when and how a lot of them have passed away, so that was really good.


Something that struck me massively today, really, was the ages. I spent a bit of time today looking at them and the ages, the young men that have been killed in the First and Second World War - some as young as 18-19 years old, barely lived their lives, you know, certainly hadn't lived to adulthood and where taken from us! Got me thinking in regard to soldiers in recent conflicts. Soldiers in recent conflicts, where they any different? All young men, but what tied them together really was the sense of purpose, you know, the unifying purpose of fighting for what they believe in and I think that's really important for us all to remember, certainly for me, it keeps me aware and keeps me keeps me mentally sound really knowing that people that have passed away in any conflict, especially in the last 20 odd years, have all volunteered to go and do that so I think that's, I think that’s big for me.


What its also done as well though, is it's made me think about friends, colleagues, people that I know that have been killed and conflicts in the last 20 years, especially at this time of year. This time of year, in the last two conflicts Iraq and Afghanistan was normally known was fighting season, and the reason it was called fighting season is because this is when, after the last three months previous to now, they've all had their money and they've had their money from growing the poppy, harvesting the opium from the poppy, selling the opium. The money from that then buys them food, rations, ammunition, you know, weapons, explosives and anything they would need to keep the fight going. Then they would continue to fight throughout the good weather till the weather starts to turn and then and then it will slow down slowly. And a lot of stuff popping up on my phone at the minute, things popping up all the time about people that have been lost in Iraq and Afghanistan and details of their death in these last few months, it just makes you think.


We're gonna be going up again, at some point, and the reason were gonna go back up is because of everything I have just said. I would like to think that in 100 years’ time, if I had been killed in conflict defending this country, I’d like to think that somebody like me and the people that were there today, would lend a hand and go up and do what they need to do. I wouldn't like to be the guy that's off on the peripherals of the of the cemetery, nobody knows I'm there, surrounded by brambles and 8-foot bushes. Just needs to be sorted out really, and so we will be going up again and I'm going to continue to try and find a few more and we'll see how we go.


A special thank you today though to Padre Ivan Linton. The guy drove two and a half, nearly three hours to come up today and the value that he brought, and the education that he gave us today in regards to how it all works with the Graves Commission and how we go about getting help and things to get that sorted, but not only that, pinpointing for us exactly where the other graves are and we found an extra two today so that's 30 we've got now. There's still 13 people buried there, and we don't know where they are. There must be a way of doing it and he knows how, so he's gonna continue to do some work and he's gonna continue to push and send information our way and he said he’d drive up again, a 3 hours drive to come up again and spend three or four hours… weeding, which is testament to the fella, he was a great Padre and is a great fella all round. And so again, thank you very much and to all the rest: great stuff and I'll see you soon.


Remember, stay safe, you know at the end the day live your lives, live them as best you can because you’re a long time dead and that's something that is dawned on me today. If you need to change your lifestyle, change your way of thinking, do something to make your life better, be happier, and then please, please, please get it done.


Take care and I'll speak to you soon.


Shoei.






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