Recently I heard a programme on the radio about people who are not remembered on the war memorials that are dotted around the UK.. Each memorial honours the names of the men who gave their lives in the various conflicts that have taken place during the 20th and 21st century. They were erected amidst the overwhelming grief after the First World War, for example, in which a whole generation of young people where mown down in the bloody battles of the Somme, Verdun and Ypres. Some say that every village lost someone, and in some villages the whole of the youth were lost.
The historian doing the programme was surprised to find that some of the names of those who had been lost in his village were not on the village memorial and so he began trying to find out why certain names were forgotten. When he traced the various families, some very anxious that their uncle, grandfather, great grandfather should be remembered. Other families did not know of the person concerned but they were all interested to learn more about their relative and to have the name added to a memorial.
There really is something very important about remembering the dead. In the abortion debate, much is said about the damage to women, and the killing of the babies, and even the rights of the medical staff who do not want to carry out the procedure. Very little is said about the need to remember the dead. There is a stone memorial in Denmark where the dead infants are remembered. I am sure there are other memorial gardens in various places.
Why is it that we have to remember and mark the passing of the dead? I would appreciate any input and insights that people can offer.