Saturday, November 11, 2006

Veterans

I couldn't quite make up my mind what to write on today. I wrote about my father last year.
I thought about my Uncle Denny, a happy little man (and now an ordained minister) who looks like one of Santa's helpers. Uncle Denny was one of just two Americans stationed in a Vietnamese village by themselves, and the village was their unit. Tough stuff. Apparently this happy friendly man I've known all my life was a bad-ass.
I thought about my ex-father-in-law. Two tours in 'Nam, the second after seeing his entire crew wiped out in a mortar attack at the end of the first tour. Career man who retired with emphazima and massive hearing loss due to his military experiences.
My buddy Doc's dad spent a frightening evening in a bunker in Da Nang Tet '68. (I think I got that right... Doc?)
My pal Sean's dad was was on a ship in the south China Sea. Not really sure what he did, and I think he likes it that way.
My good friend Tom was a Jarhead in the first gulf conflict, as well as Panama and maybe Grenada. (I think)
Both my brothers were Air Force.
I thought about going further back in time. My great grandfather was 4th NC Cavalry in the war between the states.
I think about what the average American thinks about the members of our military. How they get their information from movies and TV. I could expound on John Kerry's recent faux pas, but I won't. I could bring up Murtha, and others who claim to be unimpeachable sources becaused they served, but I won't. I have watched my father's eyes early in the morning as he drank his coffee. The thousand yard stare they call it. A stare held by men who have been "In the shit". I've seen Uncle Denny trail off at the end of a story, with a slightly lost look. I've seen Tom turn red and angry at people who "Just don't know".
We, as average Americans really "Just don't know". I hope most of us never do. After the recent elections, I'm not so sure though. I hope we, as average Americans will continue to support the troops, the ones who serve for us, regardless of how we feel about the current administration. I hope the fighting spirit of The United States of America will carry us through the recent and ongoing dark times like it has in the past.
Unfortunately, like most average americans, I just don't know.

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2 Comments:

At November 12, 2006 4:41 PM, Blogger El-Doctor said...

You are correct about my dad. There's also my great-grandfather, who fought in the War To End All Wars, and my grandfather, who was wounded in the war after that.

All I can ever say is "thanks." Thanks for serving, thanks for laying your life on the line, thanks for going so that I didn't have to.

 
At November 13, 2006 10:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When you mentioned that el-doctor's dad was at Da Nang in '68, it made me want to remind you of one thing---Your cousin,Eddie Teaster was there at the same time. Maybe they met each other. Love, Ma

 

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