Major John McCrae, acting as a surgeon for the 1st Field Artillery Brigade, had endured 17 days treating injured men in the Battle of Ypres. Despite his extensive experience, the severity of the situation was impossible to withstand. It was the death of a young friend and former student, Lieut. Alexis Helmer of Ottawa, on 2 May that affected him the most, especially as McCrae performed the funeral ceremony in the absence of the chaplain.
The following day, McCrae, who had written many poems and medical texts, composed a verse sitting on the back of an ambulance parked beside the Canal de l'Yser in view of Helmers grave and ditches of wild poppies. Twenty minutes later, McCrae had penned a 15 line poem, but unhappy with its composition, discarded it. It was a fellow officer that retrieved the poem and sent it to London where it was published by Punch on 8 December 1915.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row That mark our place; and in the sky The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, Loved and were loved, and now we lie In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe: To you from failing hands we throw The torch; be yours to hold it high. If ye break faith with us who die We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields.
We are commemorating the 100th Anniversary of World War One with a collection of our finest military sculptures. It depicts a Commonwealth Soldier on guard during the Winter of 1916-17 (note the helmet).
This is the Victoria Cross Bronze finish which is a tradional finish, similar to the colour of all the commonwealth war memorials you see in most British Towns and Villages.
All our statues include an optional engraved plate on the wooden base. On the bronze statues the plate is jewellers brass and the pewter/ silver statues have a nickel silver plate.
To add a plate to your statue please select the option above and enter your engraving details. Please note if the engraving is left blank no plate will be included. If you'd like a blank plate please write this in the engraving details.
Please DOUBLE CHECK the engraving as mistakes will require a new plate to be made.
On the engraving the text will be centred and the font sized to fit the plate.