Sunday, 15 November 2009

Deportee’s Memorial, Cormatin - Bois Dernier

Another wreath laying day has come to France. Armistice Day is a public holiday here and at 11 o’clock in the morning on the 11th of November, the signing of the Armistice, marking the end of the First World War, is remembered. Well over fifty of Cormatin’s residents attended, which is the most we have seen at any of the ceremonies. Maybe Sarkozy launching his debate on national values had an effect on numbers, who knows.

 This year there was a double celebration in Cormatin when the 60th anniversary of the erection of the Deportee’s memorial was also celebrated. To mark the occasion, the memorial has a new inscription and a large flagpole has been placed behind the memorial which will fly the French flag continuously. The inscription reads:

"Nous sommes libres, notre drapeau flotte à nouveau, ils ont fait don de leur vie"

"We are free, our flag flies anew, they gave their lives"

It is quite incredible to think that there are still people around who remember those events and the session in a local bar after the ceremonies always brings up stories of the war when Cormatin (which was in Vichy “free” France) came directly under German occupation, the deportations, the executions, the pain and suffering of the adults but more poignantly the children - now well into their sixties and seventies. Quite a sobering event, even considering the amount of Kir being drunk.

La Tuilerie Website

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