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Reserve Forces & Cadets Association
Northern Ireland



06 November 2018

The past came powerfully and poignantly to life for teenagers from Northern Ireland recently as they made a pilgrimage to the World War 1 battlefields of Belgium and France in May.

A hundred years after the guns fell silent, the local Cadets learned about the unprecedented loss of life in ‘the war to end all wars'. Accompanied by expert guides, the Cadets toured museums and cemeteries and explored the trench and tunnel systems where so many fought and died, and discovered that many of those who sacrificed their lives were themselves little more than teenagers.

It was an emotional, and occasionally overwhelming, experience for the young visitors, as well as an opportunity to deepen their understanding. Robert Orr from Grosvenor Detachment ACF pictured at Beacon Cemetary France at the grave of John Orr. Robert's connection with John Richard Orr is that John is his Great, Great Great Uncle on his paternal grandmothers side of the family. He emigrated to Canada, worked in the bank then, joined the militia before the war and ended up in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces returning to Europe and the Western Front with the infantry. He later transferred to the RFC which became the RAF. His brother joined the Army as well and served as an officer in the Royal Garrison Artillery; surviving the war.