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But this Memorial Day there is a big hole in my heart where two WW II veteran brothers used to hang out and remind us of the many sacrifices they shared. These two men passed away within a week of each other this winter and were so alike and yet so different. One year apart in age, their deaths remind us of why we celebrate Memorial Day!
One, my dad (James) served in a non combat role (bottle rim glasses) as a heavy equipment operator and truck driver providing transportation for the mega tons of supplies going through Great Britain. He used to regale us with humorous stories of driving narrow, twisted and wrong sided roads of Great Britain with American sized trucks. Wartime rules of engagement and an 18-22 year old behind the wheel. Oh yeah, we laughed a lot.
|Dad's Memorial Service > Dad returning last salute|
A favorite uncle, Wilbur, did not share much about his service. He was so strong, like my dad but had been in combat in Europe and considered himself blessed to have survived. We shared memorial service and funeral service experiences with cousins in February and the powerful memories of both men are frozen in time.
But this weekend it is time for us to remember these men; and those like them who served their country with pride and are no longer with us. We were blessed to have them with us so long so it is hard to think of young men and women killed in combat or died as a result of self inflicted wounds due to PTSD. They will not be with their families this weekend during the fun times. If you know someone in need of a hug, an invitation to a picnic or even a note or card please take that extra step and make it happen.
So enjoy your weekend but do remember those who served and will not be at the barbecue, ball game or picnic. They gave us our freedom and protected us from those who hate America's government, religions or peoples. I wish I could say thank you "Dad" and "Uncle Wilbur" for your service, we miss you every day.
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