Sunday, April 8, 2012

You may forget their names; but you won't forget their story


100 years ago almost to the day, on April 14th, 1912, time stood still; the world listened as reports came in, and then the world mourned.

On that day a ship sank, many died and the exact truth of what occurred is very difficult to confirm; yet there was one item that shone out among this darkness.  A group of 8 men, many of whom didn’t know one another before this trip, all joined together in their musical prowess to lift the spirits of those trying to save their lives.  This group of 8 men were undoubtedly proven to be playing almost non-stop until the final moment that the ship sank.

All 8 men, from different walks, backgrounds and religions stood up to bring some sense of peace into the foreboding.  And in the end with the sounds possibly of a now immortalized Hymn “Nearer My God to Thee” these men succumbed to the ocean.

I have recently finished a book that “The Band that Played On” by Steve Turner.  I received this book free from the publisher as an E-book to give my opinion on it.  Obviously since I picked it, I was interested; as well if you see one of my previous posts which was on another book about Titanic lore I had found myself wanting more info as we came nearer the 100th anniversary.  Anniversary though is not a savory word for this tragedy.  It implies celebration, might I call this the 100th year memorial of the event.

The book pieces together the often hard to find and very minimal information about these 8 men.  All came from obscurity.  None had real ties with the others.  Yet they all became the hero’s to a nation in grief.

You will find yourself gripped by the simplicity of their stories;  the humanness of these men who left families, fianc├ęs etc… and gave their lives.

The question I was left wondering is would I do the same?  Would I knowingly play on while the final boats that could save my life floated away?  Would I boldly play as those lifeboats rowed to remove themselves from the pull of the boat on its un-inevitable sinking?  Would I with sane mind and body be able to go through such suffering?

These men did.  These men chose to do so.  These men show that breeding, strong families or nationality do not make a hero.  The choices we make during pivotal moments are what make the hero’s.

I strongly recommend this to anyone who loves history, loves to hear the story of those who were before.  You will find yourself connecting with all of them.  Yet just as history has forgotten their names, I have somewhat even after reading this report; but in no way can I ever forget that they Played On

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