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Happy Veterans Day

When ever I travel I keep my eyes open for war memorials and monuments. Most of the ones I see here in the states are of Civil War and WWI soldiers in heroic or contemplative posses. Most small towns in Germany have memorials which are more somber and list the names of the local men who died in the various wars. The most interesting one is the memorial painted on a wall in Berchtesgaden which tells the sad story of all wars. These four paintings get repainted every so often and each time there are subtle changes, atleast in the three times that I have seen them. Illustrated below are the four panels in the order that I have placed them and not as found on the wall when I took the photos. I interpret the pictures as: Young recruit leaving his wife and child. Soldier leaving for the front bids his father farewell. Soldiers bravely fighting. Soldier’s body returned to grieving family. I guess we all know that collecting military medals is fun but earning them can be hell for both the soldiers and their families.