Today is the anniversary of the start of the First World War. In 1982 I was working at St Dunstans, the home for blind ex-servicemen and women. Most of those I cared for were blinded during that war. One was Harry who brought home to me, in a simple statement, the human cost of the slaughter.
Harry was the fourth of five brothers. The eldest was killed in 1900 during the Anglo-boer War in South Africa. The next next two were killed during 1914. Harry himself was blinded on the Somme, and his youngest brother was killed in the last weeks of the war, in 1918.
“When the little one died, it got to my mother, and she died”, he said, showing little emotion.