For Veterans Day…

November 9, 2015
By

Ladies and Gentlemen –

This story was published some time ago, it’s worth another look

In Honor of Veterans Day and the United States Marine Corps Birthday

This past week the last Squadron Commander of the British Royal Air Force who fought during the Battle of Britain passed away in London England.

The pictures in the British newspaper didn’t show the 93 year old gentleman, they showed a number of pictures of a dashing young aviator with a pencil thin mustache with his Royal Air Force hat cocked to the side of his head.

They also had a picture of Former Marine George Smith who passed away at the age of 90.

I don’t know if you have ever heard of George Smith

But Mr. Smith was the last of the Marine Navaho Indian Code Talkers who broke the Japanese in World War II.

The pictures of Mr. Smith showed a lean dirty rugged warrior with the eyes of a Hawk.

The pictures in the newspaper were in black and white and it got me to thinking

My favorite television programs and most of my favorite movies are all in black and white

The Andy Griffith Show

The Longest Day

Sgt York

Casablanca

It’s a Wonderful Life

Mr. Smith goes to Washington

The Man who Shot Liberty Valance

It seems the movie reel of my life is seen through my eyes in Black and White

Because my favorite memories of life are all in black and white

I remember riding my bicycle where I lived once as a little boy to Freidman’s Hardware store and setting on the floor while Mr. Freidman and other World War II veterans would set around a pot belly stove and talk about a variety of different things about the war.

I soaked up those black and white memories of listening to those men, who weren’t any older than I am now, but had the time and patience for a young wide eyed boy and his questions.

I grew up for a time in a house with a veteran of World War I…

“The Great War” is what they called it….

The “War” to end all wars is what “they” said

I used to talk to him all the time about his time in the muddy fields of France
From those men

I listened to stories about the trenches of World War I…

I learned about the Battle of the Bulge and Midway

I heard about the Bataan Death March and life in a Japanese Prison Camp

They told me about Guadalcanal

Pearl Harbor

North Africa

The Invasion of Italy

D-Day

Most of those boys who fought in World War II are all but gone now….

The Korean War veterans are leaving us now too

Along with too many veterans of the Vietnam War

I remember them all in Black and White

And as I get older…

I look back at my own memories and they too are fading in color to Black and White

This Veteran’s Day and Marine Corps Birthday

I want to thank all the Veterans past and present and certainly my Marines and Sailors that I have had the Honor and Privilege to serve with through peace, war and even contracting.

You have all made my life richer for the experience

Thank you

RTR
MEB

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One Response to For Veterans Day…

  1. Brother Bob on November 9, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    I never get tired of this account. Thank you & Happy Birthday, Brother.

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