Blogging made me think about veterans in my family. I'm riddled with them and most of the year I barely think of these long gone men of honor.
My Dionne Uncles: Norman, Vernon, and Marvin Dionne. Marvin got home leave before he shipped out. Posing me like a statue on the front lawn, he took a flying leap over my head to show his mother how fit he was, much to her horror. Marvin gifted his uniform to my mom-remember the song? " Bell Bottom Trousers, Suit Of Navy Blue". I still have his sailor hat.
My Moore Uncles: Ward, John, Leonard, and Dan. John was a submariner and much respected. Ward never went to war. A Confederate Uniform was in my grandmother's attic. I don't remember anyone asking who it belonged too? It burned with the house in 1963.
My Brother William Moore and Sister Dawn both served. Dawn met her husband, Tom McManus, while Stationed at Lackland Air Force Base. He was from Oakland, California and my parents and siblings followed them to California. They each served one enlistment.
My Husband, George Matzek was running a Caterpillar Ditch Digger with a bucket at age 17. The minute he turned 18, he tried to enlist. He had an injury and was turned down. With a middle name of "impatience", with his two stepbrothers, Sherman and Lawrence Melvin already gone, he was afraid he would miss the war, so, he enlisted in the Merchant Marines. He sailed on two ships, the Berea Victory and the Daniel S. Lamont. During a convoy, carrying ammunition, the ship was attacked by Kamikazes. At one point he was a gunner, but in his own words, he cursed and yelled and fired without aiming well enough and they took him off the gun. A second attack was a Japanese Suicide Squad that tried to crash land their planes into the ship. Some of them made contact but did not blow up their payload. All of the men from that horrific attack received meritorious service awards.
George also had a great Uncle who served during WWI as a Donkey Handler.
I salute them all for keeping the enemy at bay and our country safe. I keep his flag folded on my dresser as an ever present reminder of him and of the many vets whose graves line the fields of Verdune and other foreign shores. Amen!