Patrick –

* Today is Remembrance Sunday in the UK, the day we remember those who died in War

One hundred years ago this year, my great-grandfather, Patrick Welsh, was killed in action at Gallipoli.  He was a Private in the Royal Munster Fusiliers, he was aged 31, and he left behind a widow and four children. His body was never returned.

The following is simple, and historically accurate –

Patrick, you’re dead and I’m not, I came from you, we have history together
Rose Street, you could read and write, you read the call to fight, left Lizzie alone, holding Pat, Jimmy, Tommy and Cathy, and I came from Tommy, the four-year old, when you left for ‘left, right, left, right’
What did you think of County Kerry, Royal Munster Fusiliers recruiting HQ, behind the military gates and walls of Old Tralee
Were there other women, for you, your comrades, before death, ten months away
I have green eyes
Cunard laid on a ship, for you, the rest of the ‘Dirty Shirts’ – 6th Battalion, 10th Irish Brigade
The Kildare Curragh, Dublin, Liverpool, Hackwood Park for the salute, Southampton, the Aegean’s Lemnos, Mudrous Town for three weeks sightseeing
Glasgow-born Boy with a gun had arrived, kill Germans, Turks
Had you heard of ‘Gallipoli’, you’ll meet ‘Anzac’s’ there
6 August 1915 Suvla Bay
8 August 1915 a big hill near Suvla Bay, pinned down by machine gun, German Officers ordering Turk boy allies to “Kill Patrick Welsh!!”
12th August 1915, you were dead from bullet holes, how many, how many bullets did you take for King and Country
Your name is etched in stone, and your body evaporated over these past one hundred years, for us, for me
A Belfast man sent me a ‘Dirty Shirt’ Tunic Brass Button, once Bengal Lancers
I remembered you Great Grandfather, I don’t know if  anyone else has

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