William H.A. Willbond MSM, CD

THE VETERANS’ HOSPITAL

The wheelchairs clattered down the hall
War paintings hung upon the wall
I went to visit Machine Gun Bill
Who had been feeling very ill

Old Bill, he lay quiet on the bed
Not a sound, nothing was said
A nurse entered the old soldier’s ward
I left without even saying a word

A great old soldier was my friend Bill
And now he lives in the hospital
Along with Colonel big Jim Stone
Both now live in the old soldier’s home

The Private and the Colonel
Served in Korea and World War II
They stood tall for Canada
They protected me and you!!

God Bless old soldiers in this place,
and please God give them peace
For they have been in the fires of hell,
in battle, in the breach

Should you get a chance my friends
To visit Belcher, Pearly or Broadmead
Think about these servicemen
And what old soldier’s need

They need you friend, to visit them
They need a human’s touch
They spent their youth as fighting men
Is a visit from you now, too much?

Hi Tony
G’day Mate,

Here in Canada we have Veteran’s Full Care Facilities in our Major Cities. I am sure that in Australia you also have these.

The Belcher is the Colonel Belcher Veterans Care Facility in Calgary where Colonel Don Ethell sits on several Boards; The Pearly is the Veterans care facility in Ottawa, Colonel John Gardam donates monies from the sale of his books to the Pearly; and Broadmead is the Veterans’ Home here in Victoria where General Herb Pitts raises monies in support of this fine facility.

General MacKenzie sits on the Board of the last true full time Veterans Hospital in Canada and he raises monies for same. I wrote this poem hoping that readers would perhaps visit a Veterans’ hospital – take an elderly veteran out in a wheelchair to Butcharts Garden for the afternoon, or go for a walk or bring in flowers, books or magazines for the old fellows to read. Bring in a checker board. Ever think of taking a veteran out to dinner or to a show?

The younger generation of veterans should be, through their veterans associations, making regular visits to the veterans in hospital. In our Chapter of CAVUNP our President George Dobson and his wife Linda are regular visitors to Broadmead. They bring in clothing, dark jackets and grey trousers, to dress up the old vets for Remembrance Day and they bring a ray of sunshine and smiles to the faces of the old soldiers. Many have no visitors having outlived their wives and comrades.

I hope this helps to get the word out and re-kindle an interest in giving something back to these heroes who gave their youth so that we might live in freedom.

Blessings on you my friend
Billy