Call to remember our war dead

Dear Editor,

An appeal from Australia to the people of the Blarney district I write again from the Antipodes to congratulate the Blarney and District Historical Society on the recent launch of their excellent new journal, Old Blarney No.11, May 2018. Its six principal articles, written by Brian Gabriel, Jacqueline Manley, Chris Synnott, Richard Forrest, John Cunningham and John Mulcahy, mark a fine addition to the record of Blarney’s past and present.

Mr Mulcahy’s study of Blarney District deaths in World War 1 in his article “Killed in the Great War”, the first-ever such listing, is the result of his research over many years. In his editorial for the journal, he writes: “As the centenary of the ending of that bloodiest of conflicts approaches, it is right that their memory be restored and their sacrifice commemorated.”

This particular article gives you, its readers, the People of Blarney, a challenge to take the honouring of these men and their families from the past into the future through your action now in the present year of memory, 2018. It is time for you to prepare, in collaboration with John Mulcahy, a public monument to record that list of names. As an appropriate 21st century memorial, it could be a new structure in Blarney Square, perhaps designed by some students from your school. It could be a permanent, visual biographical record of name, service and family, displayed in the Blarney Library, that turns a single page for each name, on paper or as a powerpoint, a day at a time.

I look forward to hearing that the Blarney People of 2018, whether historians, descendant families or Blarney’s school students, are taking immediate steps to perpetuate this commemoration.

Dr Wendy Dick Melbourne, Australia