Thirteen Reasons I celebrate Veteran’s Day

1. My Grandpa North
Served in the Navy in WWII. Passed away 1986.
2. My Grandpa Jeffrey
Lifer in the Army. Served in Super Secret stuff connected to the Manhattan Project. Passed away 1959
3. Grandpa Patton
Parachuted in several actions during WWII. Shot in both legs, recovered and was slated to parachute in the invasion of Japan, but the Enola Gay dropped the bomb and saved him from probable death. Passed away 2006.
4. My Dad
Just missed WWII, signed up before he was of age and went to Korea. Blown up in a jeep and still had shrapnel in his leg when he died in 2002.
5. Jason
Oldest son of my best friend. Served in the Marine Corps four years.
6. My friend, Ingrid’s, hubby.
Marine. Lifer. Served a tour in Iraq and is in Afghanistan now.
7. Loribelle
Served in the Army as an MP where she met her husband…
8. Army Guy
Loribelle’s husband has done a couple of tours and does the National Guard too. He’s an amazing guy and their family has been through a lot.
9. My cousin Carl Moen
Navy man. He presented my mother the American Flag at my Dad’s funeral. It broke me like nothing had before.
10. The Redneck’s cousin, Frankie
He was in The Big Red One in the first Gulf War and suffered horribly from it. He committed suicide in 1999.
11. Cousin Doug
The Redneck’s father’s cousin, Doug went to Vietnam when it was unpopular to go and more popular to burn your draft card. While over there, he became addicted to drugs and alcohol. Eventually, his addictions led to a head injury and his death earlier this year. Unfortunately, he was estranged from his only surviving immediate family, his brother Bill, who denied him a military funeral. We who loved him in spite of what he’d become honor him for his service.
12. The Cowboy
My best friend Michelle’s husband served in Vietnam. Also suffered from addiction but found recovery. He is one of the best men I know.
13. Sarge
Joined the Navy when his brother was killed and his parents blamed him. He decided the best thing he could do was die fighting for his country. He was one of the few pitiful survivors of Pork Chop Hill in Korea. He survived, found recovery and died a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous two years ago. We named our first child after him, since he had no children of his own.

May all our men and women who have served or serve now be honored and respected for what they’ve give our country.

By the way, this version of Amazing Grace was one of my father’s favorites on a record with bagpipe songs. I grew up with it. I miss you, Dad.

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12 Comments

Filed under Holidays, Thursday Thirteen

12 responses to “Thirteen Reasons I celebrate Veteran’s Day

  1. Every single reason a good one…. It is very important….Just like Rememberance Day here….

  2. Wow. Very powerful. Thank you for an inspiring list.

  3. All wonderful reasons to celebrate. đŸ™‚ God bless our soldiers. Happy Veteran’s Day!

  4. My family hasn’t served nearly as much, but we tend to be so thin on the vine we get exempted out a lot.

  5. I want to go buy a flag, now. Your list is very moving. Thank you for this.

  6. What a beautiful tribute, Jennifer!

  7. Jen

    I don’t know why our family has such a rich military tradition, but we do.
    I was seconds away from joining the Marines when I was in High School, but changed my mind.
    The Redneck took the boys to a Veteran’s Day celebration at the Veteran’s hall in Fortuna. I hope it was awesome.

  8. I’m lifting a glass in memory of and honor of those who have served.

  9. I have military on my side of the family, but my husband’s side has more. Our nephew is currently serving with the Air Force. It’s funny that such a sweet-natured boy knew there was a warrior inside of him, even when his dad tried to discourage him from joining up.

    I really enjoyed reading about the veterans in your life. Each one a compelling story, all on his own.

  10. This is from a veteran in family of veterans who have served, fought, and sometimes died for our country in almost every war our nation called us to:
    Thank you for posting this, and thank you to all the members of your family.

  11. Jen

    Julia, I know it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea to serve in the military. We have a long history of honoring our country’s patriotic holidays and practices. I think that rubs off.

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