Letters From Men Killed In The War

Extracts from Lord Dowding's Book "Many Mansions"

Starting on page 29. Most of the messages are contained in the book "The Triumph of Life Eternal"
 by Colonel Gascoigne, but some are published here for the first time.

From a sailor, the son of an old friend.

I was in an oil tanker and we were all drowned when she was hit. It was very quick and I did not suffer any pain but tremendous surprise at finding myself possessed of the most wonderful strength and able to heave away all kinds of wreckage. I was making my way through the debris when I realised that we were moving through deep water. It was so still that it was just like a dream. I remember feeling it was quite easy to move and there was no difficulty in breathing (if we were breathing), but now I come to think of it, it was a different sort of breath. Anyhow I got free and so did some of my friends and we moved away without quite knowing what we were doing. We found a stranger had joined us, his clothes were quite dry and he walked through the water without it seeming to touch him. I noticed this and after a time I said something to him about it.

It all seemed so queer, and as we walked I saw that we were going towards what looked like a sunrise, the best I've ever seen, and I turned to look back over the way we had come, and the stranger put his hand on my shoulder and said "Not yet, you must go on out of the Valley of the Shadow of Death and then you can return if you want to." I said "Oh, I don't care" and I went on in a dazed sort of way until we came to a kind of garden, but it wasn't enclosed. It was on the hillside with lots and lots of flowers; oh, they were lovely! By this time I had realised that we were not walking in the water any more and I felt so tired and sleepy, and my feet refused to go any further The stranger suggested that we should rest so I sat down on the grass and was soon asleep.

You cannot imagine my astonishment on waking to find myself in a strange place, and I couldn't at first remember how I got there; but it came back after a time and I found some of the others and they let me piece it together with their help. But all the time the stranger stayed with us, and he listened and said nothing, so at last I asked him where he come from, and why he'd brought us here, and he said: "Oh, I'm just a seaman like you, but I've been ashore for some time now so I thought I might be able to help you. Then, very slowly, we all knew that we were what we used to call "dead," but it was so different that I couldn't believe it.

It's grand, just GRAND! I wish my Mother could know about it. We are in a far better land than the one we left, and it's all O.K. I'd love her to see it. Dad came to me soon after I realised this and we had a great time together. It seems queer to call him Dad, he's younger than I am now, at least he looks it. We are to have a job together soon, but I am not to be in a hurry.

This is the start of the extract; there are many more. To read the rest download the PDF file.

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