I was brought up referring to my friend’s parents by Mr. and Mrs. It was a sign of respect and, perhaps, was a result of the times. To this day, I find it really odd when I hear children refer to their friend’s parents by their first names, but I guess I need to get with the program. Back when I was growing up, it was unheard of and for those who know me, if I am introduced to your parents I will call them Mr. and Mrs. – that is just the way it is for me.
It is about being respectful.
I grew up knowing that I was an army brat, albeit for a short period of my life before my Dad retired from the Canadian Army, Horse Artillery. He was never a Mr. he was known as Major Finney. I was proud of that as a kid. Proud that my Dad served, and in my circle of friends, I was an anomaly, and still am. There are not many who can say that their Father served in WW2, but I can and I do. To this day, I wish I had taken more time to learn about what he went through during the war. I did not think that he wanted to talk about it, but turns out he did, but did not think that his kids had any interest. That was a missed opportunity. He was a young man who lied about his age so that he would not be left behind when his Father and brothers went off to war. A man who served this country right up until his retirement. A man who was somewhat deaf in one ear, a malady that he referred to as “Gunners Ear.”
My Dad took me to Remembrance Day Services. He would stand ram rod straight, arm lifted in a Salute. I am sure memories were flooding his mind.
There is one thing that will never change for me, and that is the level of respect I have for all Canadians who were either in or are currently in the armed forces. The end of this week is Remembrance Day and it always is a poignant time for me. I Remember for my Dad, his Dad, my Uncles and, all Canadians who have fought for our country, past, present and future.
The Red Poppy is a symbol of that and I wish I saw more people wearing them. I wish more people Remembered. Again, perhaps it is the sign of the times. For me, it is about showing my respect, and my heartfelt Thanks.
Thanks for enabling us to live the lives we are living today. This week, if you are so inclined, please wear a Poppy. Show some respect.
Remember to Remember on Remembrance Day.
I am proud to be your daughter Dad. I love you and miss you.
In Memory of Major R.A. Finney