HRH The Duke of Kent and Irish President Michael D Higgins unveil memorial cross to Ireland's war dead
31 July 2014
HRH The Duke of Kent, President of the Commonwealth War Graves
Commission (CWGC), and Irish President Michael D Higgins
unveiled a Cross of Sacrifice to honour Ireland's war dead at
Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin today.
The Cross of Sacrifice at Glasnevin is the first to be erected
in the Republic of Ireland. It represents an important addition to
the cemetery's existing memorials, which honour servicemen who died
in the First and Second World Wars, and compliments the work the
CWGC and the Trust recently completed to identify and mark more
than 200 war graves within the cemetery.
Speaking at the event, His Royal Highness said: "The Cross
of Sacrifice we dedicate today, is an important step in the
continuing process of recognising and remembering those Irishmen
and women who died in the two world wars. It represents a lasting
tribute to their sacrifice and it is my hope, in the years to come,
that memorials such as these continue to inspire successive
generations to remember."
Deirdre Mills, the CWGC's Director of UK Operations, said: "In
the year that marks the Centenary of the First World War, the
Commonwealth War Graves Commission is delighted that our joint
initiative to erect a Cross of Sacrifice in Glasnevin Cemetery has
reached fruition. The Cross is an important feature of our work
worldwide, commemorating those from both Ireland and throughout the
Commonwealth who gave their lives during both World Wars. We are
extremely grateful to the Irish Government, public, and the
Glasnevin Trust, all of whom have done so much to support our work
of commemoration and remembrance in Ireland."
Designed for the CWGC after the First World War by renowned
architect Sir Reginald Blomfield, the Cross of Sacrifice represents
the faith of the majority and the human sacrifice of all
Commonwealth war dead. The Cross of Sacrifice can be found in CWGC
cemeteries across the globe, wherever Commonwealth servicemen were
laid to rest during and after the two world wars.
Hundreds of thousands of Irishmen and women served with the
British and Commonwealth armed forces during both world wars and as
many as 60,000 are believed to have died.
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