Forgotten WW1 hero’s.

6 07 2007

History – not one of my favourite subjects at school. But knowing now what I do, I regret not paying attantion in class! In my on-going “excavation” into my family history, a decorated WW1 hero family member came to light. His name, Julius Wronsky, had been all but overlooked on my (growing) family tree. He met his fate fighting on the Western front in France in 1917. Recent successes in other strawberry fields and/or rose gardens, spurred me on to find out more. My journey has just begun down this particular avenue and already, through the input from family members, historians and other interested parties, in the shape of photo’s, letters and anecdotes, lifts my spirits. I believe that everyone has a story to tell but some can no longer speak for themselves, hense their stories are lost. It always amazes me how willing strangers are to assist in a quest..hopefully I can do the same for those kind souls someday.

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4 responses

6 07 2007
David van Wyk

Dear Nossie
Your post reminds of the beatles song, ‘strawberry fields forever.’ The trenches of world war one were far from being strawberry fields. Maybe wer should pool the information we find on Luka Jantje and on Dusty’s Great Grandfather and your Grandfather and create some short stories out of their respective narratives. Who were the women in their lives, those historical silences who always disappear in the shadow of their men folk? I will definitely research the French campaigns and see what I can come up with. But I still owe Dusty a great deal of attention as well. The dust is gradually settling and perhaps the whirlwind which I stirred up will set me down on a gentle breeze.

6 07 2007
nossie

Dear David, wow, a man who knows REAL music, history and a peotic soul…where have you been all my life?? Just kidding. Yes, the strawberry fields song was exactly what I was thinking also. “Fields of Gold” also springs to mind. The woman were and still are the real power-houses/engines behind ANY story. Dusty and I have been talking mostly about the life of one individual. But the women in this particular mans life deserve as much if not more credit. But thats a story for another day. Fear not, David, I have plenty of time although patience is not one of my many and varied natural virtues…so , gather your thoughts, I’m looking forwards to this journey into the past. There has been sooo much written about WW1 but taking a look at it from a personal perspective, puts a whole new spin on things. I just hope its not another whirlwind.

7 07 2007
nossie

I have spent the entire afternoon (except for the time wasted watching the Boks get thrashed by the Wallabies!!) wading through the quigmire of information on the web written about the conditions that soldiers in the trenches in France had to endure. I got quite emotional about my long lost great uncle who spent his last weeks bogged (!!) down in mud, human excrament, blood and guts in those trenches. For a fleeting moment I thought his death may have been a relief from the unimagineable circumstances those men had to undure….sadly none of his letters home have survived but letters from others have – describing hell on earth. My search continues – any WW1 experts – please, your insight would be greatly appreciated.

7 07 2007
nossie

PS – particularly the Western Front, the Battle of the Sonne and the Battle of Delville wood, 1916+-.

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