She Clasps A Silver Cross

"Rhymes of a Red Cross Man" by R.W. Service. Published 1916.

Rhymes of a Red Cross Man by R.W. Service. Published 1916.

Always Time to Remember

One cannot help but reflect on so many Great War anniversaries as each day passes some 100 years later. Today though I have had a think about a few posts that really must develop and though perhaps the “On This Day” approach has passed, there is always time to remember…always…time…to remember.

"To the Memory of my brother LIEUTENANT ALBERT SERVICE Canadian Infantry Killed in Action. France August 1916.

To the Memory of my brother LIEUTENANT ALBERT SERVICE Canadian Infantry Killed in Action. France August 1916.

So during one of my recent thinks I thought about a book from the reference library, Rhymes of a Red Cross Man by Robert W. Service. I have often thought upon this book and so recently went for a walk with the book in hand tipping through its pages, scanning for words that might enlighten oneself for the day. I have an objective in taking this book for a walk.

I know that at the war memorial there will be something to capture that may add some further poignancy to these printed lines of the famed Canadian poet-writer Mr. Service. So…rather than ramble on –  let us see what a little walk, a little thought and a little time to remember can do.

"But mother's sayin' nothin', and she clasps---a silver cross" (The Convalescent by R.W. Service).

But mother’s sayin’ nothin’, and she clasps—a silver cross. (The Convalescent by R.W. Service).

Lieutenant Albert Niven Parker Service was killed in action when serving with the 52nd Battalion CEF, August 18, 1916.  Albert was the brother of Robert W. Service who served initially as a war correspondent for the Toronto Star and then later served with the Motor Ambulance Corps of the American Red Cross. Two other brothers, Alexander and Joseph worked in munitions plants.

Robert Service was born in Lancashire, England and became known as “The Bard of the Yukon” having written, The Shooting of Dan McGrew, and The Cremation of Sam McGee. Both works were published in Songs of a Sourdough (1907).

About The Author

Paul has worked with the Paradigm Motion Picture Company since 2009 as producer, historian and research specialist. Paul first met Casey and Ian WIlliams of Paradigm in April 2007 at Ieper (Ypres), Belgium when ceremonies were being held for the re-dedication of the Vimy Memorial, France. Paul's sensitivity to film was developed at an early age seeing his first films at RCAF Zweibrucken, Germany and in Sardinia. Paul returned to Canada in 1967 and was further amazed by David Lean's "Lawrence of Arabia" and "Bridge on the River Kwai". Film captivated Paul and with time he became increasingly interested in storytelling, content development, character, direction, cinematography and soundtracks. At the University of Victoria, Paul studied and compared Japanese and Australian film and became interested in Australian film maker Peter Weir and his film "Gallipoli" (1981). Paul was entranced when he learned Weir had visited the beaches, ridges and ravines of the peninsula. The film "Gallipoli" alone led Paul on many journeys to sites of conflict in England, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Malta, Hawaii and Gallipoli. It was, however, when Paul watched documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, "The Civil War", that Paul understood how his own experience and insight could be effective and perhaps influential in film-making. Combining his knowledge of Museums and Archives, exhibitions and idea strategies with his film interests would be a natural progression. Paul thinks like a film-maker. His passion for history and storytelling brings to Paradigm an eye (and ear) to the keen and sensitive interests of; content development, the understanding of successful and relational use of collections, imagery and voice. Like Paul's favorite actor, Peter O'Toole, he believes in the adage “To deepen not broaden.” While on this path Paul always remembers his grandmother whose father did not return from the Great War and how his loss shaped her life and how her experience continues to guide him.


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