Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Female Veteran, 2010

~~Photo Series: Victory Day, May 9th, 2010, Kiev~~

May 9th, 2010 was the celebration of Victory Day, the 65th anniversary of World War 2 in many of the countries of the former Soviet Union.

Within five minutes of my arrival, I saw this veteran. I recognized her immediately as someone I had photographed on this same day, two years ago. See photo here...

Female Veteran 2008 @ Flickr

It's always a pleasant surprise to see some of the World War II veterans again. There were a few that I remember from two years ago that I saw again this year. Others I did not see. Sadly, time stops for no one, not even the heroic.

It is a tradition that whenever you see any veteran on this day, but especially those from the Great Patriotic War (what WWII is called over here), that you stop, say a kind word, say "thank you", and give them a flower. This lady had so many flowers that she continually was dropping some. Three times I picked up some flowers that fell and put it back in her hands.

Ten minutes later, I saw her again at the Memorial to the Unknown soldiers of the war. Here she placed her entire collection of flowers, 100 or more, along with the tens of thousands of other flowers already left in memory. No doubt, ten minutes later, she was already holding another 100 flowers.

Female Veteran, 2010

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