Lest We Forget


And here you see me trying to talk about something that I am certain to mess up. Here goes.

War. It’s something we fear, we prepare for, and hope never comes. Maybe that’s why we celebrate Victory Days and Veterans’ Day with solemnness, maybe why there’s a field full of crosses and stars people visit every year.

Y’know, with WW2, especially, came something that was so evil and wrong, it became a reason to fight. The Holocaust.


Way back in summer, when my sister took my brother and I to the Royal Ontario Museum, we entered an exhibit that still makes me shut up thinking about it. The Evidence Room. Because apparently someone tried to disprove the Holocaust. Someone tried to wipe away the blood and stains and say it was false, it was fake news, it was made up.


There’s a whole exhibit proving otherwise. A whole room full of evidence to the contrary, that there was a reason the war desperately needed to be won.

The whole room was white. The ceiling, the walls, the plastered photographs and blueprints. Blueprints for concentration camps, factories of death. Auschwitz was only one of many camps meant to kill of Jews and everyone Nazis deemed unworthy. Even though that was textbook in my mind, even though I had read autobiographies and heard all about it, I had to see it to make it sink in.



I felt the trains and little houses before I realized they were 3D plans for the bunkhouses and gas chambers.



There was a model of a door, one side completely sealed off with a tiny glass window to peek out of, the other side with the lock. The sign said it was the door of an old gas chamber, a guard would be waiting on the outside til it was done.

Imagine being on the other side of the door. Trying to beat on the window. Being one of many. Turning into a statistic.

There were places to stay, places to work, places to step into and never come back. There was never a place you could be free.


They said the reasons for the concentration camps was to make Germany superior. Anyone who didn’t fit that was shipped off.

11 million. 11 million people were killed. 11 million to make one nation superior.

There were moms, dads, brothers, sisters, kids.  Gone. Millions more gone were the soldiers fighting to make sure their country would never have to go through that. Maybe when we read 11 million lives, we don’t get that they were people. We don’t get that they had ordinary lives, jobs, maybe someone was on the brink of inventing something new, maybe someone just found out they were gonna have a family, maybe, just maybe they lived.


I don’t even know if I’m doing this justice. I don’t know if I even understand how well planned they made this mass murder. But maybe it’s important that I -that we do. Cause knowledge not shared remains unknown. And if this knowledge remains unknown, we’re in trouble.

This is why the war was fought. This is why so many people gave their lives to fight. Because everybody has the right to live, no matter who they are. Nobody should be able to take millions of lives simply because they’re not his ideal.

We don’t trade lives.

Today, we celebrate the defeat of those who did.







12 thoughts on “Lest We Forget

  1. I almost teared up reading that. That was so impactful. I hate the thought of this. We’re even studying it in social right now, and it’s all just so sobering and horrible because this happened only 100 years ago. My Great Grandma lived through the Great Depression and World War 2. She could remember when she was FOUR. That must’ve been such a horrible thing to remember. (She died last September, 4 days off from being 100)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember that same feeling when I visited Washington D.C. last year. My mom has actually been to one of the concentration camps (to visit XD) in Germany when she was in college.

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  3. Jo, you gave me goosebumps reading this. World War Two is a passion of mine, and we recently went to the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. I had felt the reality of the war before, but never so clearly as seeing all the evidence. And, last night my family and I went to the WWI museum to see the poppies displayed on the monument. I got to thinking about how much has been lost and forgotten in these one hundred years since the ending of WWI. It is the job of writers (like you and me XP) and orators to continue the legacy and to remind the world of what happened. A very well-written article, this is. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh my goodness, thank you for this post. I hope we NEVER forget what our soldiers fought and died for. My great-grandfather died in April, a month after his 92nd birthday. He fought on Omaha beach in WWII and because of him and many others we have our freedoms. To think of what happened in WWII is sickening and heartbreaking but thank God there was an end to it. I hope we always will honor those who helped to stop it and honor those who make freedom and liberty a reality for us today. ♥

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  5. Never again.
    That phrase is first linked to a Hebrew poem about Masada, saying that “Never shall Masada fall again!” but now it means the Holocaust.
    I looked it up again, just to see if it was what I thought it was. It is, but now its universal. There’s a gun control thing for it, which annoyed me a little, becuase the guy who coined it meant it to be a call for action, violence, saying next time that the Jews would fight harder.
    I highly recommend a book by The Friends of Israel called Halina: Faith in the Fire. Excellent, touching book.
    Never again.

    Liked by 1 person

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