Photography and Art

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Calendars for Fallen Soldiers

I must admit to being conflicted over the war in Afghanistan. On one hand, I deplore violence and war in any and all forms. On the other hand, I oppose religious extremism, especially when it attempts to suppress the freedoms of other people. In Afghanistan, we have soldiers from North America fighting against the religious zealotry of the Taliban, so what is one to do? My view changes with the tides.

However, there is no arguing with the courage of the individual men and women of the American and Canadian armed forces who believe in the fight against the Taliban and who have put their lives on the line. As Canadians, we are saddened by the losses to the families whose loved ones fought and died in Afghanistan.

One man has decided to do something about it. His name is Shane Keating. His nephew died while serving in Afghanistan and Shane Sr. has devoted his life savings to publishing a memorial calendar to many of the Canadian fallen soldiers in honour of his nephew. You can read all about it here.

The calendar can be viewed at the (firmm stands for families in remembrance of military members) website. Like any other calendar, this one is full of photographs, but these are very special photographs, images of the soldiers that served their country and died doing it. Whether you share their cause, you must respect that they believed that what they were doing was right and just.

I was listening to a radio program about Shane Keating and they interviewed a mother of one of the soldiers featured in the calendar. She said that the photo in the calendar is her favourite one of her son, the one she carries around in her purse at all times.

How many calendars can you buy this year where the images are so precious as these?

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