Sunday, November 11, 2007

Veteran's Day 2007

Thank you Tewkes to the inspiration of this post.

I have always been blessed. Despite what my husband says, we live in the land of the free. While I don’t believe in war, I know it sometimes is an evil necessary. I can’t argue the validity of World War II, I can’t argue the need for the world to unite against an evil so vile, it changed the face of society for ever.

Old soldiers and young men suited up, stormed the beaches of Normandy, slogged through the jungles of Asia fighting in blood, mud, monsoon, snow and bitter cold to eradicate the world of this tyrannical hatred. To them my heart rejoices, mourns, and knows the world today is better.

Three of my father in law’s brothers served in World War II. Two of the three were captured, held in POW camps or on work farms until their liberation in 1945. All three returned home, forever changed by the experience, and much of the family has distaste for the Brits due to the circumstances surrounding their captures.

My grandfather was physically unable to serve in World War II, so he worked in the naval ship yards. My grandmother (adopted) worked for years in the plane factories as a Rosie the Riveter. My father’s oldest brother died while enlisted during WWII driving a truck. My father and my uncle both served during the Korean conflict, neither served in battle, and yet my uncle is interned at Arlington (this sits heavy on my soul.)

My father served in Panama, his stories are rich, humorous, and self-deprecating. My father is my hero.

Rabidly against the Vietnam War, my father and I came numerous times to battle in my teen years. He now recognizes that the war was wrong. The parallels between Vietnam and the Iraq Wars are totally lost on him. I mourn the lost of our young men who died in foreign lands for the material wants of impotent old men with power. Young lives lost, potentials never realized, I cry in want of them who are named in the glossy black marble of the Memorial Wall.

Both of my brothers have served. D2 in the Army after high school; D4 (my youngest brother) is an Air Force lifer. I value their lives, their contributions to our country. During Desert Storm I had pen pals who were serving in Saudi, there wonderful letters are stored away in my keep chest. Their friendships are warm memories, and knowing that they are out there walking somewhere safe and free are happy thoughts.

Today, as yesterday, there are those who will never come home. I mourn their loss. I pray no more will be lost. I know my prayers are for naught.

To those who have served, thank you. To those who are serving, I value you and your life. I wish you peace. To those who are reading this please remember those who have and are serving on this Veteran’s Day 2007.



J.M. Tewkesbury said...

Beautiful post, Cele. Thank you.

CV Rick said...

excellent post for veterans. i, for one, appreciate it.