Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

Legion launches WWI tribute effort

The Every Man Remembered initiative was unveiled today to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the war
The Every Man Remembered initiative was unveiled today to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the war

The Royal British Legion has launched a campaign to encourage people to pay tribute to every one of the 1,117,077 Commonwealth servicemen and women who died in the First World War.

The Every Man Remembered initiative was unveiled today to mark the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the war.

It is an online database that allows people to pay tribute to someone they have a connection to or find someone who has no-one to commemorate them.

Prominent personalities from the worlds of entertainment, arts and business have already paid tribute to some of those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Actor Tom Hardy, Downton Abbey creator Lord Julian Fellowes, TV historian Dan Snow and West Ham United vice chairman Karren Brady are among those who have been photographed holding pictures of fallen First World War servicemen they are connected to.

Dr Stephen Clarke, head of remembrance at the Legion, said: " Every Man Remembered will be our greatest act of remembrance during the First World War centenary.

"We're asking the British public to commemorate every one of the 1,117,077 men and women who died during the First World War through our huge online database.

"You can look up a family member, namesake, or make a random search - the important thing is that not a single one of them is left without a dedication and recognition of the role they played in providing the freedom we have today."

People can find someone who was in their family, or who shares their name, age, workplace, birthday or home town.

The campaign was inspired by a British Explorer Scout who visited a war cemetery in Belgium and wrote to the Legion asking why some of the graves had dozens of poppies and crosses next to them, while others had none.

Dr Clarke added: "The support The Royal British Legion provides is just as important for our armed forces today as it was when the charity was founded after the First World War.

"Every Man Remembered will help us make a real connection to those who died 100 years ago and support those who continue to serve."

Visit www.everymanremembered.org for more information.

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