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Posts tagged ‘cemetery’

Somme American Cemetery and Memorial

It’s actually pretty hard to find the World War I battlefields in Northern France.  Infamous for the bloody stalemate that lasted there for years, the land has now returned to tranquil fields.  While contemplating this change driving through the Somme Valley, I happened across the American Cemetery.  The front gate and chapel door were unclosed, but there was not a single person to be seen.  I thought it fitting on Veterans Day (also known as Remembrance Day in the UK and Canada, and Armistice Day in France) which commemorates the November 11, 1918 end of World War I, that we visit this quiet cemetery in the French countryside and think about these forgotten battles that took the lives of these soldiers.

Memorial Monument - Somme American Cemetery

The Somme American Cemetery and Monument seems to pop up out of nowhere, interrupting miles of French farmland.

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Normandy American Cemetery

Normandy American Cemetary

This past weekend, Americans celebrated Memorial Day and spent some time remembering all those who gave up their lives in service to our country.  This last March I had the chance to visit the D-Day Beaches in Normandy, France.  I learned a lot in my visit and was struck at several points by the incredible difficulties faced by the Allies in leading such a massive and risky invasion.  But what I returned to this Memorial Day were the individuals interred at the Normandy American Cemetery on the Landing Beaches.  The cemetery was impressive in its size but also its reverence and honor of those buried therein.

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Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Bloom

copper urn, Mt. Auburn Cemetery

When the first Spring blossoms have arrived and the trees start to turn green with immature shoots, then it’s time for me to visit the Mt. Auburn Cemetery.  Founded in the 1830’s, many elite Bostonians are buried in the rolling 174 acres of this graveyard.  Like many old cemeteries, Mt. Auburn is more of a park filled with historic and interesting memorials.  Early May is one of the best times to visit when you can stroll and enjoy the mix of burgeoning color and partially bare trees.

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