During the course of World War One, millions of men and women lost their lives. Poignant among the battles is the Somme; from July to November of 1916, European forces carved their places in history into the fields where over a million people perished. It has been recorded as one of the bloodiest conflicts in human history. To this day, the shell fuses that litter the fields surrounding the Somme river in France are being ploughed to the surface. The Royal British Legion decided to put that metal to good use for the 100th anniversary of the battle, remembering each and every soldier that died there.
Projectiles to Poppies
Every Man Remembered was inspired by a message that the Legion received from a young girl that visited a war cemetery in Belgium. She wrote:
“I know that not everyone can be remembered as individuals, but I felt it was a shame for some people to have dozens of poppies and crosses while others had no one left to remember them.”
Participants that choose to honor a fallen soldier through the Every Man Remembered project receive a brass pin in the shape of the poppy flower, with a red enamel center. The brass comes from repurposed shell fuses found in the Somme fields, and the enamel also contains a small portion of soil from the battlefield. Along with the pin comes a card, containing the name of a soldier who lost his life.