He was 16. It was June 6, 1944. The day American troops landed in Normandy. He was 16. Parachuting behind the lines. A medic. Unarmed. He was 16. He was the first medic into Buchenwald Prison Camp. He stayed with his unit through fire fights. He bandaged the wounded. He was brave. He served. He was 16.
My husband's father died five and a half years ago. He was a veteran of WWII and the Korean War. Today we went to the national cemetery in Kansas City to lay flowers on his grave. What a humbling experience that really is.
I read newspapers. I read a lot of blogs. I know that American sentiment isn't high these days. Some of that sentiment is well deserved. Some is downright embarrassing. But spending a day at a cemetery like this reminds me of an awful lot. Reminds me of why a waving flag will make my heart jump. Reminds me of what these brave men and women have given. Without these soldiers we would never have been a free nation. We saw markers from the Civil War. We saw paper markers from 2008. All the same. Not one soldier greater or bigger than another. Some dying in he line of duty. Some dying as old men. Some having served at 16.