Jack the Ripper – A Love Story ( Excerpt 126 )
After we had eaten our fill, we left the table and stood chatting. Jimmy had introduced me to some of his fellow Officers, and we were all sharing our opinions on the conflict that we were on our way to join.
A steward came to me and said, ‘The Adjutant would like a few minutes of your time?’ he gestured across the room to where the Adjutant stood with a red-faced Officer with a very military bearing, I guessed at once that this was the Colonel.
I walked across the room to where they stood, ‘You wanted me, Sir!’ I said, ‘Yes, Doctor this is the Colonel, he is very interested in what you are proposing’ replied the Adjutant.
The Colonel, appraising me, asked, ‘Could you explain briefly what it is you propose and how it will effect my unit both in the short and long term?’ he had me, so now I had to prove my credentials or lose his attention and possible support.
‘As I am sure that you are aware, there are very few trained Doctors in this area for the treatment of the wounded, basically what I am proposing is that I teach your men to care for each other under battlefield conditions in order to prolong a life as long as possible.’
‘And how, may I ask, do you propose to do this.’ queried the Colonel.
‘First, and I mean no offence, we must work on the men’s personal hygiene. The majority of men that we have lost in this war, have not been to Boer bullets, but to typhoid. I would suggest that all water, whether it be for washing, cooking or whatever reason, should be boiled before use. I realise this will be inconvenient, but in the long run it will save lives, we will only win this war with healthy men.’ I stated.
(C) Damian Grange 2018