Saturday, 21 July 2012

Will Crooks MP in aid of the British Women's Hospital

The British Nursing Journal on 11th March 1916, published this wonderful little story of  a patriotic speech made  in aid of the war effort.


Mr. Will Crooks, M.P., spoke at the concert held at the Alhambra, in aid of the British Women’s Hospital, Star and Garter, Richmond, and showed us our duty to the splendid men fighting and dying for us in this War.

Referring to a conversation he had in France with a wounded soldier, Mr. Crooks said :-

I gathered my feelings up, as it were, and, kneeling down beside the stretcher, I said,   ‘How  do you feel, son ?’

‘All right,’ replied the soldier, ‘I think I’ll be all right, don’t you ?’

‘I am sure you will be all right,’ I said. ‘How long is it since you were hurt ?’

 ‘Four days,’ he replied. ‘But I’ll be better when I get my clothes off, won’t I?’

I turned round. I couldn’t look the man in the face. I said to myself:  ‘What have I done that he should give all that life is worth to fight for me?’

Is bread a little dearer, are taxes a little higher, tea a little dearer, and trade a little worse?

My God, you can never repay these men for what they have done for  us..


Jim Crooks said...

I just published a book on Will Crooks and researched his life thoroughly, but that is the first time that I've heard that tale. If I'd heard it sooner I would have included it in the book in the chapter that covers his war efforts. It is a typically great story of the man. He was something quite special. You can read more about Will if you like on my website:

Mametz said...

Thanks Jim

The book looks really interesting, i had no idea how involved he was. There was a lot of great work done during the war years. So glad you enjoyed the article.

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