Comrades-of-Mine was a poem published in the Blind Veterans UK Review magazine in February 1919, just three months after the end of the First World War.
It has been rediscovered in the Blind Veterans UK archive and here, blind veteran beneficiaries and celebrity supporters of the charity read it in tribute to all those who have served and paid the ultimate price for our country.
This poem, Comrades-of-Mine, was written by First World War blind veteran Thomas Henry Dennison. Thomas was born in Staffordshire in 1885.
Thomas enlisted as a Private in the North Staffordshire Regiment on 7 September 1914.
On 7 October 1915, he was wounded by a trench mortar bomb in Givenchy, France, and rendered totally blind.
He came to our then headquarters in Regent’s Park in February 1916, where he learnt typewriting and to read and write braille. He also trained for a future career as a poultry farmer.
Thomas left Regent’s Park in December 1916 and returned to Staffordshire, setting up his own farm there. In 1921 he got married and had a daughter in 1929, Nona. Thomas continued poultry farming for a few years but later moved on to mat-making work. Sadly he died suddenly on 6 October 1933, aged only 48.
Reciting the lines of the poem in our video are blind veterans who've served from World War Two to present day.
Thanks to them for helping us record Thomas' words and also to celebrity readers, David Dimbleby, Angela Rippon and Bernard Cribbins for their support of this project.