A Face From the Past

This is a picture of my great-grandfather, Robert Washington McLean:

Robert Washington McLean WW1

He was a veteran of World War I, so this is a photo of him in uniform I think. I know very little about my great-grandfather though; he died when I was an infant, and I have only seen one photo of us together.

Still, it’s interesting to think about our connection. He lived in a very different time than me, and I sometimes wonder what life was like for him as a young man, fighting in such a terrible war. This year is the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, and I wonder what he was going through in those trenches with chemical weapons, machine guns and so on.

Australian infantry small box respirators Ypres 1917

If I could meet my great-grandfather again, I wonder what I would tell him about the future. Many things have changed in 100 years, but also many things remain the same: we still have wars, we still have terrorism, and we still have rich nations vs. poor nations. The technology has improved a lot, but people probably are still the same.

Anyway, it’s interesting to think about our ancestors and the stories they had, and maybe what they would think of the world today.

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Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

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