Monday, February 08, 2010

Facebook attempt to remember Allied soldiers killed in Belgium

A drive is underway here in Belgium to attempt to create Facebook pages for each of the 27,594 Allied soldiers who were killed in Belgium during WWII and are buried in Belgian cemeteries, men from countries including the U.S., Britain, France and Australia.

High school students are each being asked to research the lives and battles of a chosen soldier and with the help of archives kept by the Institute for Veterans, produce a Facebook page for each one with photos, audio and video. It is hoped relatives of the dead soldiers will submit whatever documents and other evidence they have.

The first Facebook page created as part of that project honors Lance Cpl. Thomas Leslie Cartwright of High Wycombe, England. Cartwright was killed in fighting in 1944and is buried in the Kasterlee War Cemetery in northern Belgium along with 99 comrades of the British Army's Royal Scots.

The plan is to have each soldier documented on Facebook by 2014, when the country will mark the 70th anniversary of Belgium's liberation.

"You are only dead if no one talks about you anymore," said Pol Van Den Driessche, a Belgian senator who launched the project, known as "Live and Remember."

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