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Friday, November 11, 2011

Veteran's Day open forum

On this Veteran's Day I'd like us all to remember the sacrifices of so many in all branches of the United States military, and supporting organizations; sacrifices big and small.  Patriots come in many different forms.  Remember especially that those who wore the uniform wrote a blank check to the people of this country, a check payable up to and including their lives.  It is because of that unselfish sacrifice that we have this great country and the freedoms it holds.

Today I'd like to open this blog up to the readers to say in their own words how appreciative they are of our veterans.  Leave in the comments of this blog a little anecdote, a remembrance of someone close to you, what it means to you to live in this country because of the sacrifice of our veterans, or just the names of veterans that are important to you, whether they be serving currently or in the past, whether they be your ancestors, friends or just someone you look up to.

I'll start it off by remembering my Great Grandfather Stanley Basford Sr, who served during WWI in the Army, and my stepson Timothy, who served on active duty in the Army and is still in the National Guard.


Zebster said...

Also, my Great Uncle Hershel, who spent a career in the Navy, and my cousin Aaron. I was obviously hurrying this morning.

Anonymous said...

I have several cousins that have or are serving in the military but I have to give thanks to Dad. He was a peace keeper at the end of WWII (Navy) and then joined the Marines. He was in Korea as well as the beginning of the Vietnam War and retired just after I was born.

And thanks to you too, Zeb!

littlecuz said...

On the anecdotal side of things and my rational/logical side puts this on the major coincidence file but then there is that small percentage of "the universe at work" side that wonders if it's more than that.

My Uncle Fred joined the army in the 1960's he was assigned to HHC 547th Combat Engineering Battalion in Darmstadt Germany. He was a supply clerk. I was assigned to HHC 547th Combat Engineering Battalion in Darmstadt Germany in late Jan 1989. It was really cool being able to talk to him when I came home that first Christmas and discovered that we had this commonality. Fred and I were fairly close, as I am with all my aunts and uncles, but this gave us something special. We were no longer Uncle and Nephew, but truly brothers in arms. Especially when I later joined the national guard and we were in the same battalion. He was at the Skowhegan Armory and I at Augusta.

To get a little more spooky, when Fred passed away a few years ago we on vacation in New York City. The morning after we got that call we were on the subway heading into the city. Sitting on the subway was a veteran wearing the 547th Unit patch on a jacket. He several patches so I had to ask if he had actually been assigned, and of course he had. He had been there in the early to mid Eighties. Now to be sure if I hadn't have been thinking of that connection with Fred I may not have noticed the patch at all, to be sure I'd have never started a conversation with a stranger on the subway in NY. Or maybe it was more than that? Who knows, I'm still not sure what to make of it.

Others who served, my Grandfather Rines who was also stationed in Germany in the 1950's, making 3 generations of Rines men to serve in that country. Gramp was there as the wall was being built, Freddy was there after it was finished and I was there to see it fall.

My Grandmother Rines's brothers Jake Morton who served in the Navy and Eugene who was in the Army. Great Uncle Clair Gerry who was in the Army I think. I'm pretty sure that my Grandfather Rines's brother Stanley was in the Army.

Chris G said...

I have many people - family - over history who have served in various forms in the services. The earliest direct connection I have is on my Grandmother's side of the family, a Capt Pomeroy, who served during the Civil War, and is found noteworthy in at least one book I've read of those times.
Closer to me is my great uncle, Carroll, who served with the 8th AF in Europe as a B-17 (co)pilot with the 447th BG. We lost him in peace time (mid-1980's)in Pennsylvania as a flight instructor. Apparently, and unfortunately, he had a heart attack and crashed with a student pilot aboard in a forested area; and it took several days to find/recover the bodies and wreckage.
My Grandfather served with our Government over most of his life in various capacities, most notably with the commerce department; and with his access to high levels of foreign governments, he was in the service of the OSS/CIA in the very early years of each of them. He was actually "commissioned" a BG, uniform and all, at one point while on one of his "tours." He may not have served the military as we know it; but he was in the "full service" of our country through his varying duties that took him to many countries throughout the world. His stories - of what he could tell - would fill volumes; and most of them take place in all the cities and countries of which we read so much of in the papers and see so much of in the news: Afghanistan, Beirut, Iran, Saudi Arabia, etc.
My father was in the Army in the late 50's and early 60's as a reservist and was almost called up during the Cuban Missile Crisis while we lived in Florida. My father's biggest claim to fame was getting back from a training mission early (he was field radio) and bedding down, only to awake in the early morning with an M-60 parked 5 feet away! He never heard it, and they never saw him. Could have been another of those training accidents we hear about and wonder why.
Finally, my brother and I spent 8 and 9 years each, respectively, in the Marine Corps. My brother spent the majority of his time on the East Coast as a field radioman at Camp Lejeune and in Norfolk assigned to the USS Mount Whitney as a communications NCOIC and for ship's security detail. He participated in many NATO exercises throughout northern Europe, along with many Navy exercises throughout the Carribean, Florida, and the Gulf of Mexico (real tough duty sometimes, I understand :)).
Needless to say, our family has been connected to the military throughout its history, and I'm very proud of that and of my personal service to this Country of ours and the Corps. I've had the great pleasure of serving along side many selfless, dedicated, and professional men and women; and in 31 years since I first signed on, I think about them and miss it daily. It's a great part of my life, and I never forget to thank all those who have served before me and those I see who are serving us now.
God Bless all our men and women in the service of our country, and God Bless America!

Shel said...

Thank you to so many men and women I have known through my lifetime that have served... being a 'military brat' I know too many to list, but I would like to recognize my Dad, Ray Merrow who served for 20 years in the Air Force. Thank you is never enough! as well as a thank you to my son, Timothy Chasse and of course you, Zeb.