Frank Buckles, the last American Veteran of the First World War passed away
Flanders House in New York informed us that Frank Buckles, the last American Veteran of the First World War, passed away on February, 27th, 2011.
This coming Memorial Day, Flanders House will more than likely hold another commemoration ceremony at "In Flanders Field Statue" on Manhattan's Westside. To see pictures from last year's memorial go to http://www.flandershouse.org/flanders-fields-memorial
We'll remember him.
Exchange students Pretoria remember South-Africans killed in action - September, 20th, 2010
On Monday 20 September 2010 at 18.30 students of two schools from Pretoria are organizing a short ceremony of remembrance at the Scottish memorial near Frezenberg (Zonnebeke, Belgium). Their reading of personal stories will be musically accompanied by the drumsband of H. Familie and members of the Passchendaele 1917 Pipes and Drums. Afterwards, escorted by the drumsband H. Familie, they will walk to the Menin Gate at Ieper for the Last Post. For 14 years Hoërskool Waterkloof has been running an exchange programme with St.-Leocollege Bruges. Last year H. Familie Ypres started a similar project with Hoërskool Centurion.
The students' gathering on 20 September for this remembrance is not just accidental. 20 September 1917 - 93 years ago - saw the start of the second phase of Third Ypres. On that very morning the South-African Infantry Brigade, part of the 9th Scottish Division, were near the Frezenberg (north of the railway Ypres-Roeselare). The four regiments reached their objective, but the price paid for it was particularly high: of the 2,576 men, 1,255 were reported killed, missing or wounded. Nearly all South-African headstones in the Ypres and Zonnebeke region bear the date of 20 September.
The story of an old bugle: Jack Waterhouse
Private Ernest John Waterhouse No 3505
11th Infantry Battalion
Australian Imperial Force
Jack age 16 in Egypt
Ernest, "Jack" was 15 years and 11 months when he enlisted on the 8th Sep 1915.
He was the son of Ernest and Mary Ann Waterhouse of Irvine St, Cottesloe, Western Australia. His brothers Fred and Francis had enlisted earlier in the year.
Until he was 19 years old Jack would not be able to serve and fight overseas in the army.
He entered France via Boulogne on the 19th Jun 1918 and remained in the coastal areas until the 14th Aug 1918 when he joined the 11th Bn at the front as a bugler. He remained with the Bn until the 28th Oct 1918 when he contracted influenza.
On the 18th Sept 1918 the Bn advanced towards the Hindenberg Line and fought an action to capture the village of Villeret. In the action they suffered 4 Officers and 16 other ranks killed. They were relieved on the 24th Sept by American troops and withdrew to billets at Tincourt. One of their first duties was the burial of the dead, this was carried out at Tincourt cemetery with the playing of the ‘Last Post'by the Battalion's buglers.
Jack's Bugle at the graves at Tincourt where he played the Last Post
Jack with his Bugle and his 2 brothers, Frank left & Fred right.
Postcard carried into battle by Jack
Text: My Darling Jack with Love and best wishes for a happy birthday and many more happy birthdays.
From Dad & Mother
Jack has written
In the Field 18 Sep 1918
My Darling Mother
Life is worth nothing now so if I go under you know I have done my duty. Do not grieve as we will meet in the new world. Love to all Jack
PS Will the finder please see that my Mother gets this
Bob Waterhouse with his father Jack's bugle and the buglers of the Last Post Association.
The bugle being used to play Reveille solo at the Last Post Ceremony - The Menin Gate - 8th August 2010
Jack's bugle returned to the western front after 92 years when his son Bob travelled to Tincourt and then the Menin Gate.
On the 8th August the Last Post Association for the Menin Gate kindly arranged for one of the buglers to use Jack's bugle during the evening ceremony. It was used ‘solo' to play the reveille to close the ceremony.
Bob told us: "My grandfather Ernest Frederick Waterhouse (Capt' Ret' South Australian Rifles 1893) gave the Bugle and the Military Music Book for Bugle and Trumpet Calls for Parades and Active Service, printed for the Army in 1912 , to my Father Jack. This was for his 16th birthday on Sept 18 1915, being 10 days after his Attestation into the 11th Battallion AIF, with his parents permission."
Cultural Trophy for Antoon Verschoot
Each year, the Ypres Cultural Counsel awards a Cultural Trophy to a deserving person or organization in Ypres. The Culture 2009 Trophy is awarded to Antoon Verschoot, which was proposed by the New Ypres Revue Theatre. At the ceremony of the Cultural Trophy on January 25, 2010, the winner will be honoured by all members of the arts council. The trophy is a ceramic sculpture by Stijn Yperman, teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts in Ypres.
Antoon Verschoot ("Toontje") was born in Ypres in 1925. He learned the tailor craftsmanship with Albert Vermeersch and exercised the independent profession of tailor until 1965. From 1965 until his retirement he worked as a clerk at NCMV. Together with his wife Suzanne Lefever he has three children and in the meanwhile six grandchildren.
In 1950 he became fireman, and in 1954 he joined the buglers of the Last Post. This year he celebrates the incredible number of 55 years of service as a bugler! At the age of 84, he still stands full of great enthusiasm at the Menin Gate. For this he received already several decorations. In 2008 the Last Post Association received the Culture Award for the Flemish Community Volunteer.
29/10/2004: Antoon Verschoot, 50 years bugler of the Last Post Association, receives a decoration from the Ambassador of the United Kingdom.
Antoon Verschoot deserves the 2009 Cultural Trophy not only for his lifetime commitment as a volunteer bugler, but also as a 20 years loyal member of the Sint-Niklaas Male Choir, the founder of the Art Circle Hemian in 1994, and in 2006 he founded Anton Kunstkring, where he brings together like-minded people around painting. In short, a man of exceptional merit, liked by many and loving to be among the people, a man more than worthy to receive the Cultural Trophy!
25/01/2010: Antoon Verschoot received the Cultural Trophy.
30,000 Acts of Remembrance
By the 9th July 2015 the buglers of past and present at the Menin Gate will have sounded the Last Post on 30,000 occasions. To commemorate this, the Last Post Association will publish a special edition book. We need your help!