I’ve been delinquent in writing about my WWII veteran friends. Very delinquent. Shame on me.
In the past 4 months, I’ve lost 5 of my WWII veteran friends:
Earl Joswick waist gunner, B-17, 8th Air Force, POW, survivor of the Long March
Don Kent, radio operator, B-17, 8th Air Force
Don Geng, ball turret gunner, B-17, 8th Air Force, POW, survivor of the Long March
Ted Murphy, Navy pilot, Wildcat, CVE 70, Taffy 3 , battle of Samar
Dave Dahlberg, flight engineer and top turret gunner, B-17, 8th Air Force.
I’ve written before that when I joined the 8th Air Force Historical Society ten years ago, I knew that I would get closer to these guys, know them better and it would hurt more and more as they passed on. As my brother said , in a reference to combat missions “We knew the mission was dangerous when we took it.” I knew this would be the case when I joined. And the value of knowing these men is worth far, far more than more than my cost in pain and tears. And I watch them go from being old to being frail to missing lunches to passing away.
My Dad once said that you can get used to anything. You may not like it, but you can get used to it.
Dad was right.
I am getting used to my WWII friends dying…but I don’t like it.