November 11th, Remembrance Day.
Please take the time to remember fallen and current soldiers. If you can, go to a memorial celebration at your local legion hall. Take the time to stop for a moment of silence, remember those that have given their lives, so we can live as we do today.
War is devastating, it causes life threatening injuries, it creates shortages of supplies. During the Indochina war that ran from 1948-1959 the circumstances were no different. Jean Valnet, a Parisian medical doctor and army surgeon, found himself without antiseptics for treating wounds.
Jean Valnet, was a colleague of Rene-Maurice Gattefosse who was a French perfumer chemist. This is important to know as it gave Valnet a base to start. Gattefosse burned his hands when his lab accidentally exploded. He thought to extinguish the flames in a nearby vat of water. The "water" was actually Lavender essential oil. He found that it only took one application of Lavender essential oil to aid the healing process. After this experience he was lead to a lifetime of studying the effect of essential oils.
Rene-Maurice Gattefosse is the person who coined the word "Aromatherapy". His first book was published in 1937. Gattefosse continued to study essential oils in healing. He even treated soldiers in military hospitals during World War I with essential oils to help them and further his studies.
So you can understand how the actions of Jean Valnet would be affected. He found himself short on supplies but not on wounded. He was in China treating the wounded when he ran out of antibiotics. Out of desperation he began to use essential oils. The result he had left him amazed. He credited many lives saved, infections fought, due to the use of essential oils.
After the war, he continued using essential oils in his practice. He published the comprehensive text "The Practice of Aromatherapy" in 1964. This gave him global recognition and his works are still used as a study and are still quoted today.
Let us also think about the men and women that have worked side-by-side with our soldiers today. They too gave up much.
Lest we Forget.