Statia Island Governor Alida Francis: ‘Honouring The Sacrifices Of Those Who Served’

“Fellow Statians, on this Memorial Day, we gather to honour those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in defence of our freedom and our way of life. Those who so loved our country that they died so we would live. There is no greater display of bravery; no greater show of courage; no greater exhibition of love than what these heroes did for us’. 

Statian heroes like J.C. Van Putten, W.O. Hooker and M. Dembrooke joined thousands of other valiant men and marched into war in order to preserve the peace.  And for this, the gratitude of every Statian and everyone who values freedom goes out to them.

As the British prime minister, Winston Churchill said in his speech to the House of Commons in August 1940, as the Germans prepared to invade England, “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”

These words are as true today as they were more than 80 years ago, and are as relevant to our own people as they are to the British. Therefore, we must never forget what they did for us. We must never dismiss their bravery and sacrifice. And we must forever be proud that even back then they heeded the call and selflessly went to war in service of country. 

We can never truly repay the debt we owe these men, but we must do everything possible to honour their sacrifice. And, how do we do this? Not by the words we utter here today, but by staying true to the vision that led them to battle and to die in our names. 

Let us honour the memories of all who fought in World War II by carrying forward their passion for justice, their hope for a better world, their courage in the face of evil. We must embody the ideals for which they gave their immortal devotion – good over evil, peace over war, love over hate, selflessness over selfishness, country over self.

Theme: Honouring The Sacrifices Of Those Who Served

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