Looking back, I don’t believe the previous 20 years were worthwhile.
Nothing that’s going on over there convinces me that it’s worth it.
Afghanistan is back to square one just months after we left.
The 454 have been let down in my opinion, and I don’t want other moms’ sons and daughters to return there.
Simon’s fate was sealed on the day of the deadly attack on the Twin Towers in New York 20 years ago next month.
I recall sitting in our home in Cadishead, Salford, with my family, watching the horrible events unfold on TV.
How could we have predicted that Simon would die as a result of the events of that day, when he was only 14 years old?
My naughty small child would grow up to be a proud man in his Army uniform in seven years.
When Simon and his father, Pete, were debating whether or not he should join the army, we advised him, “Go for it.”
He was a member of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers’ 2nd Battalion.
I was watching the conflict in Afghanistan on TV but had no idea how horrible it was.
Simon, a six-year-old schoolboy,
I wasn’t completely uninterested. I didn’t feel compelled to be concerned, watchful, or helpful.
Everything changed after I lost my idol.
I now understand that no matter how much you ignore something, it is always happening and will eventually affect your life.
The day my spirit was torn in two was Sunday, August 16, 2009.
On a cruise ship heading from Southampton to the Mediterranean, Pete and I were celebrating our silver wedding anniversary.
Before retiring to our stateroom for an afternoon nap, we had watched dolphins swim alongside the ship.
The cabin phone rang at 4 p.m.
“The captain will like to speak with you and your husband,” a lady remarked. He’s already on his way.”
My stomach began to turn.
“It’s Simon,” I told Pete. Why would the captain feel compelled to pay us a visit?”
We were both dead silent, staring at the door. It felt like five hours had passed in five minutes.
The captain, who was accompanied by two strangers, paused uncomfortably before announcing Simon’s death.