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Would You Like Us To Know About Someone Today?

by Keith Koffler on May 28, 2012, 10:04 am

How can we repay the gift they have given us?

We can’t, because they are not here to receive their due.

All we can do is remember them, and honor them, and wish we had their courage and selflessness.

Maybe you want to remember someone. Maybe you would like others to know of their sacrifice. If you would like to tell someone’s story, or even just share a name, I would be honored to have you do it here.

I know there are many who read this website who would like to hear about it. I know I would.

To all those who have given their one and only life to save the country we love, rest in peace, and God bless you.

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{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

Lizzy May 28, 2012 at 10:15 am

Well my Grandfather survived WW1 and the Spanish Flu so he was a very
lucky Doughboy. Also my 3 Uncles in WW2 sadly one stepped on a landmine
in France after only a month. My other two Uncles made it home one was a
tank commander in the Battle of the Bulge and got blown out of his tank but
made a speedy recovery. Last my Uncle was a B-17 pilot he flew out of
England always sat on two flak vest. He was out of the formation of 12 the only
plane hit by flak the plane crashed into the sea and sank in less than a minute.
The entire crew survived and were picked up by a Danish fisherman.
The name of his plane was Calamity Jane II.

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gracepmc May 28, 2012 at 10:34 am

My father Lt.Col. Paul M. Rosol. Born Kosice, Slovakia. Served WWII, Korea, Vietnam. Yesterday, after Mass Taps was played to honor the brave men and women who served and serve and protect this country. God Bless America. Thank you Keith.

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A.J. May 28, 2012 at 10:35 am

My Dad, all 5 feet 2 inches of him, was one of the original Darby’s Rangers in WWII. He was the Demolitions Officer for the 1st Battalion. The Rangers told him he was too small but he told them if they could find something the other men could do that he couldn’t, he’d quit immediately. They never found anything he couldn’t do. He was captured at the Battle of Cisterna and spent the rest of the war in prison camps. He weighed 99 pounds when he was liberated. Most of the war stories he told were about his adventures as the Mess Officer for his battalion but I’ve learned from other sources that if you were a German Soldier, you DIDN’T want to run into my dad. He survived the war, went to dental school on the G.I. Bill and taught me many things, not the least of which was love for my country.

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Lizzy May 28, 2012 at 10:42 am

Great things come in small packages my one Uncle was only 5ft 4 in
a tank.

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srdem65 May 28, 2012 at 10:36 am

As we were cleaning out our parent’s home after my dear Father’s death, we found a treasure trove of letters written during WWII from a soldier fighting a far-away war to his young bride. My dear Mother saved every letter and postcard, every V-mail, every thing, that her husband sent from overseas.
My brothers and I got to know our parents when they were young adults during a war that seemed to be everywhere and threatened to destroy everything.
Some of the letters were personally candid, as you would expect from newlyweds, some were sad compaints of a GI grunt and others were a hazy picture of how military life affected a young couple just starting their lives.

My dear Father was one of the lucky ones who returned home safe and sound. He never talked about his service, or what he saw when his unit was in liberated Germany. After his honorable service to all of us, he returned to his job at the local steel mill, bricking up the blast furnaces and retired after 43 years. He was a dedicated family man who, along with millions of his peers, served honorably without fanfare.

Salute! to all the GI grunts that nobody remembers but their families..

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csinnm May 28, 2012 at 10:37 am

Marine PFC Robert Lopez, killed in Vietnam in 1968 and his remains finally identified in 2005. thank you to all those who died for this country, rest in peace.

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A.J. May 28, 2012 at 11:17 am

I enlisted in the Air Force in 1968 and was lucky enough to spend my entire 20 year career in places where nobody was shooting at me. I’m sending my salute to PFC Lopez!!!

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csinnm May 28, 2012 at 5:30 pm

thank you, too, A.J. glad you were safe. my daddy was army air corps in WWII – part of the photo squadron that took pics of Nagasaki and Hiroshima. I greatly admired him and those of the greatest generation (and those before and after him, of course), but being a baby boomer, you Vietnam era heroes stole my heart. so sorry we didn’t treat you well when you came home, like you deserved.

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Cymry May 28, 2012 at 10:48 am

My grandfather, who was in Europe in WW2, had many stories about his time there, and I always enjoyed hearing them. He talked about how the little French and Italian children would come up to him and his buddies, looking for a piece of Hershey’s chocolate. He came home from the war and became a Baptist preacher and lived a long life until he died after a resurgence of leukemia which had been in remission. While in the hospital at Emory in Atlanta, GA during his first bout, he became the unofficial chaplain on the cancer floor, and he came to make regular rounds, visiting with the doctors, nurses, other cancer patients and their families and meeting their spiritual needs, even when he himself was ill. His brother died in Belgium during the war, and his wife’s brother, “Uncle Boone,” died in the Pacific theater. “Pop” always had a tractor inner tube ready for me to float down the local river, and many family suppers were spent discussing the Bible and End Times events. I learned a lot from him, not the least of which were my love of Jesus and love of country. Thanks, Keith, for giving me a place to mention him today.

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RAINBEAU May 28, 2012 at 11:05 am

Many members of my family proudly served and all of them returned home safely. I still remember them by visiting their places of rest and leaving a patriotic bouquet, with a pair of miniature flags tucked in each one, having done so this past weekend. Two of our classmates did not fare so well, however, having lost the fight in Vietnam while still in their teens. Remembering all of our soldiers, not just on Memorial Day, but everyday. I also wholeheartedly support our veterans’ organizations.
A PROUD ‘NAM WIDOW.

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WM May 28, 2012 at 11:09 am

My maternal grandfather was a gunner in WWII. They were shot down over Germany, and though he survived the downing, he had shrapnel in his head, neck, and back. His parachute was caught in a tree, and as he hung there, two kids found him. One ran off off to tell their parents, the other stayed behind; he gave that one a letter to send to his mother, which, surprisingly, the kid did. He was taken to a prison camp, where he didn’t receive the medical treatment he needed. Again, he survived the camp and made it back home (when they were being marched out, they weren’t sure if they were being taken to be executed or moved). He married my grandmother, had two daughters (my mother and aunt), but passed away when my mother was only 13 from what the doctor tagged as a brain hemorrhage. Of course, the doctor was fairly certain it had to do with the shrapnel left in his head, pieces of which were still working their way out of his skin to the day he died. The strength of these men and women just never ceases to amaze me.

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A.J. May 28, 2012 at 11:22 am

You’re right about that strength. My mom told me my dad had nightmares ’til the day he died from the things he had to do in WWII, but never once did he ever utter “Oh poor me!”

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Carole May 28, 2012 at 11:11 am
anneinarkansas May 28, 2012 at 11:33 am

My Uncle Buck, Daddy’s brother, was killed at Iwa Jima and buried at sea from his ship. I was in the third grade having lunch in the cafeteria when my great aunt came to get me. I can still see that bowl of tomato soup.
My grandparents never got over it. All of us have treasures of his memory…mine is a beautiful wood carved chest that he made on board his ship. I use it for an end-table and put prized items on it and always my creche at Christmas.

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HumbledAmerican May 28, 2012 at 11:37 am

God ( in whatever form you know him) bless and keep you and yours. God comfort your families who have paid the ultimate price. God comfort and ease your families with wounded members.

All the way back to the American Revolution, the men on both both sides of our family have voluntarily served our country. Today, our family currently has men and women on active duty.

They serve their time quietly, with dignity. Our families serve along with them. To us, America is worth the sacrifice. Not once have any of us ever questioned whether it was or is the right thing to do. It is our way to give back to the country that exemplifies freedom, equality, independence, strength, courage,and ability to realize your dreams.

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HumbledAmerican May 28, 2012 at 11:47 am

Am unable to single out one of them. They all served and are still serving. Some came home, some did not, some came home home injured or traumatized, all of them changing our lives forever.

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Mr. T. May 28, 2012 at 11:57 am

I would like to remember my uncle (my mom’s brother), who was in the Air Force and died in World World II. Sadly, I never knew him, as he died twenty years before I was born – however, my mom has told me many wonderful stories about him over the years, so I do feel like I know him.

God bless my uncle and all the others today.

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Cooper May 28, 2012 at 12:11 pm

My father-in-law, Bob Brunson, who served with the US Army in North Africa, Sicily, and Italy during WWII as a tankerman. He also served in the SC NG for many, many years. I was in awe of this humble and honorable man and still am today, even though he passed away in 2008. God Bless to him and all who have served this country under arms.

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Nancy May 28, 2012 at 12:15 pm

My father – Sgt. Jesse L. Foster. Was a proud member of the 24th Army Victory Division that fought in the Pacific during WWII. He survived the attack on Schofield Barracks at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; was shot twice, had his toes crushed by a landing craft; and survived a direct artillery strike to his tank in the Marshall Islands. He was partially disabled but kept a job for all those years after the war. My mother, Daisy Foster, stood by him during WWII, through his disabilities, until his final days in 2009. Thank you, Dad. You showed us how to stand strong against adversity, and we love you.

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Justavet May 28, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Thank you, Kieth for giving of this space. To all my fallen brothers from Vietnam, in my heart and soul everyday is Memorial Day.

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The Original May 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm

I know 3 who died while serving our country. My Dad’s uncle died in Europe (and is buried there) during WWII. A good friend of mine died on July 4, 1969, in Vietnam on a river patrol boat. The son of a friend died in Iraq due to a roadside bomb.

My father was going to be part of the Japanese invasion force had the armistice not been signed. He ended up spending a year as a part of the occupation forces, stationed between Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He only recently talked about what he experienced. It was a mess over there.

My Dad also had an uncle who returned after flying 52 bombing missions over Germany, departing England and landing wherever they could in Russia to reload with bombs. Never shot down.

One of my Dad’s best friends (now gone) suffered severe frostbite at the Battle of Bulge and spent time in a hospital. He returned back to work, but in the office of Dwight Eisenhower. He was the person who sent out the cable to everyone that Germany had surrendered. When the machine was placed in the Smithsonian, he was brought to the ceremony as their guest and honored. He was a history teacher until he retired.

In my book, all of them were heroes as are every man and woman who now serve or served, whether in combat or not. They all deserve a hearty “thank you”.

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veritaseequitas May 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm

My Dad, George W. D., (don’t remember what his rank was), who served in the US Army in France during WWII, and came home safe and sound to raise a family. A Patriot to his last days.
I would also like to thank the Marines and Sailors (and their families), that I come into contact with on a daily basis through my job, who have deployed or will deploy to places of extreme danger, all in the cause of keeping us safe and free.
God Bless you all.

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Moe May 28, 2012 at 2:20 pm

My Dad’s parents had five sons in WW2, how on earth did they stay sane? Everyone of my uncles made it back home safe and went on to raise theier own families.. Thanks Uncle Eddiie, Uncle Dick, Uncle Frank, Uncle Bobby and Uncle John from the bottom of my heart.

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Janna May 28, 2012 at 2:27 pm

My Grandmother’s baby brother Cal (just a few years older than my Dad) served in the Army, fighting the Japanese in the pacific and to this day I remember him telling stories of how “the rivers ran red with American blood”. He made it home but part of him stayed in the pacific until the day he died.

May all those who fought for our freedom and gave their lives doing so, rest in peace.

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DeniseVB May 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm

My mother and father, both U.S. Marines in WW2, now living their eternal Happy Hour buried together at Quantico, Va.

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Savage Sadie May 28, 2012 at 3:08 pm

A great-uncle (my late grandmother’s brother) is buried in France. He was killed on November 10, 1918.

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desertdweller May 28, 2012 at 3:37 pm

My husband’s father served in WWII and died in Germany at the end of the war, 3 days before my husband was born.

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lynne May 28, 2012 at 3:41 pm

My Uncle John was a paratrooper in Korea. He was captured on his first jump and spent the war in a POW camp. He didn’t die physically, but he is scarred emotionally and spiritually.

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Girly1 May 28, 2012 at 5:12 pm

My Uncle Edward was career military – Lt. Col. in WWII, Received a Purple Heart. Cousin Jack was an ambulance driver during Viet Nam. God bless America and everyone who defends and protects her!

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MarjoJimbo May 28, 2012 at 5:13 pm

My father-in-law served in the Pacific theater during WWII. He returned to the USA a different man, which ultimately led to the break up of his marriage. No PTSD talk in the 40s.

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Tea Party at Perrysburg May 28, 2012 at 5:24 pm

I would like to mention my father, the WW2 vet. He was an awesome guy.

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Whiskey_Joe May 28, 2012 at 5:31 pm

For Sasha –

Please remember this young Russian immigrant who died in the service of his new country – this country. остальные в мире

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=19661563

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csinnm May 28, 2012 at 5:34 pm

Keith – what lovely tributes! thanks for the opportunity to share.

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Chris Berry May 28, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Sonny Myers
My wife’s uncle, was an AF Forward Controller in ‘nam.
Didn’t know him but for a few years but he was a great guy, he had some horror stories but he never regretted what he did.
RIP to every hero, and to the families of the fallen, thank you for your sacrifice too.
May the rest of us not squander the freedoms that others have died for.
Any freedoms you give away now are not your freedoms to give they are those of our children and grandchildren do what you can to ensure they enjoy them.

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Sadie May 28, 2012 at 7:32 pm

Rather than speak of one, I want to remember the 78,000 MIA in WWII and all the MIAs since, whose names we’ll never know, but whose service is forever remembered and honored.

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LWard May 29, 2012 at 1:19 pm

yes, thank you for the reminder and all other wars before as well.. god bless their souls.

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LWard May 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Keith, you have opened a flood gate… you have my permission to put my comments into a book. More people need to know what these guys (and gals) REALLY went through. We survivors of these war “casualties” have shaped the America we know today. I hope to make my own project for healing in my future psych practice. So many want to share their stories. Thanks for the opportunity.

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Scott May 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm

Amazing stories. My hat is off to all who have served, and especially those who made the supreme sacrifice.

Kind of makes me wonder how this generation (myself included) would handle the same adversities mentioned in these posts. Not as well, I’m sure.

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Snake Plissken May 28, 2012 at 10:19 pm

To my Dad’s younger brother who was killed in France just a couple of months before VE day. He was originally stationed with an artillery unit in Washington state. My dad was in the South Pacific with the Army Air Corps. Earl didn’t want to stay stateside, and requested a transfer to Europe. He got it. He was caught in a firefight in a foxhole with 3 others. He and one other were killed, the other two taken prisoner. Their bodies were left there for weeks, and whatever was left was interred in France. In the mid-fifties, the governement offered to disinter his remains and have them sent back to New York, which they were. There probably wasn’t much left in the coffin.
And to another, younger uncle, still alive, but barely able to walk from the effects of freezing in the mountains of North Korea. He shared stories of his boots freezing to his feet, of soldiers freezing to death overnight because they had nothing but a blanket to cover themselves with. But he never spoke harshly about it, or about the South Koreans who served alongside. He came out of that misery with a cheerful demeanor in spite of the horror he’d seen.
God bless you, Loyd.

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Lindy May 28, 2012 at 11:13 pm

My dad, who was a Master Chief in the Navy, served in England before being sent to the South Pacific in WWII. Dad claimed that JFK was a douche for losing his PT boat–the same type vessel dad served many missions on.

My uncle survived the Bataan Death March.

God Bless our Military.

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Keith Koffler May 29, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Once read about a comment by JFK himself remarking that he was being hailed as a war hero for screwing up command of his boat, though his actions afterward appear to have been heroic.

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The Original May 30, 2012 at 12:47 am

One of the kids I graduated HS with learned in US History about the Bataan Death March. He knew his father was a part of it, but never knew what it meant. His father survived, but spent 2 years in the hospital when he returned home. He spent his time after the Bataan Death March as a POW working in the shipyards in Japan.

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lcsouthern May 29, 2012 at 10:03 am

My husband, Jeff Corley – Viet Nam 67-68, now in Congestive heart failure from confirmed Agent Orange…my cousin Dennis Halcomb 3 tours of Viet Nam, died from throat cancer from Agent Orange…

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LWard May 29, 2012 at 1:16 pm

My dad (still here, 98yrs. old!) served in the south pacific in WWII. He, like many others, does not wish to discuss his time there. He has what we now know as PTSD, as so many do/did. The nightmares, the rage.. all of it. god bless them.. they did what they had to do – it was WAR. No whining about attention, handouts, benefits… (Now, they put soldiers in JAIL for killing the enemy.. defendmichael.com..) My uncle, I never met, died in a tank in WWII N. Africa.. he must have been small, too.. must be why they were in tanks..

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CAR May 29, 2012 at 6:36 pm

We have been honored and humbled by these and many other stories of valor and service. God bless them all.

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AZ Granny May 29, 2012 at 8:02 pm

Keith, thank you for giving others a platform to share their memories. The tributes here are amazing. I know only through a friend how much a family sacrifices when their loved one serves in the military. I also believe the ones who choose to serve are exceptionally courageous.

My thanks to all who have served. God Bless our military!

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AFVET May 30, 2012 at 12:27 pm

My Father served in WWII.
He was a radio operator in the Army and spent some time in Burma.
One of his favorite airplanes was the P-40 Warhawk flown by the Flying Tigers to defend the Chinese against attacks by the Japanese.
He witnessed many flyovers from his camp.
My avatar depicts a P-40 dressed to the nines.
It is a tribute to my Father.

I enlisted in the Air Force in 69 and like A.J. above, I was lucky enough to have duty where no one was shooting at me.

Thanks Keith, the tributes are great.

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