Roger Waters Unveils Memorial To Late Father in Italy
Roger Waters has unveiled a memorial in Italy to his late father and other soldiers who were killed in an historic battle during World War Two.
The memorial takes the form of a newly-erected white marble obelisk in the town of Aprilia south of Rome.
At 11:30am on 18th February 1944, Royal Fusiller Lieutenant Eric Fletcher Waters was killed by the Germans in a ditch near the Italian town of Aprilla. Eric was fighting with comrades in Z Company which is part of the 8th Battalion force of the British Army.
Roger Waters, who would go on to so-found Pink Floyd, was just a baby at the time and never got to see his father.
“It is 70 years to the day since my father died here and I have finally come to the end of a journey to discover what really happened to him,” the musician and composer said, after placing a wreath of red poppies at the foot of the monument, next to a British steel helmet peppered with shrapnel holes, retrieved from the battle field.
“I feel an enormous attachment to my father today. I’m very happy to be here,” he said, placing his hand over his heart.
Roger Waters only recently found out the true story of what happened to his father after Harry Shindler, an Anzio veteran, conducted research to trace the final hours of the battle, using intelligence reports from the time to shed light on what happened.
He scoured war diaries and military maps held by what is now the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers at the Tower of London, and came upon an intelligence report that described the desperate last few hours of Lt Waters’ unit and the exact spot where he was killed.
The monument, which lies on the edge of a grove of olive trees, is inscribed with words from ‘Two Suns in the Sunset’, the closing track on the Pink Floyd album The Final Cut: “Ashes and diamonds/Foe and friend/We were all equal in the end.”
Source: The Times, England