A small boy and his friend run through the yards, they are 5 or 6 years old. They slide partially down a hillside and slowly peek over the top, looking for “Charlie”.

The one boy turns to the other and asks, “What are you going to do when you are drafted?”

War comes to them on the TV every night. They know about those that ran to Canada. They know those that stayed. They know of the bodies of what were once vibrant young men arrive day after day from that horrible place, Vietnam.

They talk of their grandfathers. Of those that served in WWII. They speak of the silence of those veterans who returned.

Today, I remember my Great Uncle Joe talking about all the heroes he knew. Some of whom died in the skies over Germany. He was never a hero. He flew in the same plane, he put his pants on the same, he ate with those heroes. According to him, every man aboard his plane was a hero, except him.

He was a hero. He was a bombardier of a B17 Flying Fortress.

Today, Vietnam is ancient history. Desert Storm, V1 in 1991 is ancient history. The war on terror is what is remembered by men older than their years.

“All gave some, some gave all.”

Thank you, I remember you. We remember you.

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By awa

2 thoughts on “Tuesday Tunes”
  1. I can relate. My dad was a B-17 pilot. He flew 35 combat missions over Europe with the 447th.


    He flew his first mission January 2, 1945. He never said it directly, but I know he compared himself to those who went before him in ’43 and ’44. He described his tour with a single word. He said it was a “lark”. He allowed as how they came home on three engines “more than once”.

    When I was a young lad, my dad was a WWII vet. My maternal grandfather was the “old guy” who was a flight instructor during WWI. Ancient history was the Civil War. Now WWI is over 100 years in the past.

    And you can guess where I get my screen name.

    1. Dad was a mortar man in the 222nd Infantry, 42nd “Rainbow Division”, and got wounded in April of 1945. I have picture of him with his group of guys holding up a captured Nazi flag before he got shot.

      He said later that he was actually grateful for getting wounded because he didn’t have to see the horrors of Dachau.

      I will always remember seeing the large scar across his back where the round skidded across the outside surface of the left scapula exiting, about 2 inches from the center of his back. (It entered just under the left armpit, missing all the nerves and tendons, causing mostly superficial damage only.)

Only one rule: Don't be a dick.

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