Friday, May 27, 2016

Memorial Day

Memorial Day 2016

It's Memorial Day again, the official beginning of summer. But before we rush out to start the grill or head out on a camping trip we need to remember the defenders of our freedom. 

My father was a B-26 pilot during World War II. He flew 65 missions over France and Germany. And he told stories of the hell he experienced. One in particular was heartbreaking. He would sob as he tried to tell me about being the only man in his dorm after a mission to bomb the railroad bridge at Nogent-sur-Seine in France. The notation he made in his copy of Bridge Busters says it all. "Me-alone in dorm." I think the reason this particular mission weighed so heavily on him was that he was on "lucky two weeks leave" at the time and didn't fly. The guilt of surviving must have been crushing.

Fifteen men from three crews were killed, five more were either taken prisoner or managed to return to England. These are the men who died. Each is linked to a memorial page at the Find A Grave website. Please consider visiting and leaving a virtual flower. We need to remember. I'm sure Dad did until the day he died.