Memorial Day, to me means remembering all of those who died in the war and those who served in the US Military that didn’t die.
What??? Why remember those who didn’t die in the war? I’m thinking about my uncle Dan. He was a Ranger – in the 2nd Battalion. On D-Day in WWII – Company “C” – One of the first troops on ground in Normandy, France. He lived to tell his story but never really did. He came back with a Purple Heart, and shrapnel in his back, but, physically he was fine otherwise. He and his wife and two kids settled down in North Vernon, Indiana to a farmer’s life. My parents, myself and most of my cousins would go on that long drive for an “easy” weekend on the farm. For breakfast he’d grab three eggs from the chicken coup crack them open into a glass and drink them down – ewe. But, I’m sure by then not much phased him. I’m sure he had PTSD. Some nights we’d all be asleep in our sleeping bags in the living room only to be awakened by this horrible screaming. I’ll never forget that sound, it was awful. I never really thought about it at the time, I was only a little girl, who had bad dreams now and again too. Now, though, looking back I can’t imagine what kind of night terrors he had. I can’t imagine the stress of being in a position that was so significant to our nations vitality, and the life of other countries like France, and Germany.
Even though Dan made it back alive and physically well. I’m sure a part of him died during that war. He loved his country and he loved his family. He was a great man and I miss him.
My Dad was in the Navy, although he wasn’t enlisted when there was a war going on but there was still unrest. He was on a Destroyer, a chef working in a tiny little galley kitchen, preparing all kinds of homemade foods and goodies to keep up morale. Everybody’s job was important. He got to travel all through the Mediterranean on his two years on-board.
I have a young cousin who’s been to Afghanistan three times now. Thankfully, he’s back home now and I’m sure his Mom and siblings are happy to see him back.
Memorial Day to me is remembering all of those millions who’ve served our country, in one capacity or another. No one will come back the same – whether the experience was good, bad, beautiful or ugly. They will forever be different.
Thank you to all!!!~Bam