Some very fine songs came out of the crucible of World War II. Some of the best, rendered both uplifting and heartbreaking at the same time, came from Britain’s wartime songbird, Vera Lynn, who died Saturday at her home in East Sussex. She was 103.
Vera Lynn was such an exemplar of what civilization is about at its best — a civilization so many feral Brits are doing their best just now to destroy. I’ve seen Vera and heard her sing in movies and in TV clips. I had no idea she was still alive until Saturday. This YouTube clip is a fine treatment of her long life.
Lynn’s best-known songs are “We’ll Meet Again” and (there’ll be blue birds over the) “White Cliffs of Dover.” They’re beautiful and hopeful and were much needed by wartime Brits, whether they be at home or far away. The troops and civilians both loved her, and there’s no mystery why. I’m sure she holds the NCAA record for lifting spirits.
I challenge anyone with a heart to listen to Vera singing “We’ll Meet Again” with those servicemen and come away with a dry eye. This defines what “We’re all in this together” truly means. Disregard current counterfeits of this sentiment. This is the real thing, and it needs to be remembered. As does Vera Lynn. Songbird. Patriot. A great Brit. A great spirit.
RIP Vera Lynn.