Posted 02 March 2003 - 11:23 AM
One Lung: “We found ourselves in a situation – this generation today are in the same situation. We grew close … I have a feeling for these guys I don’t have for anyone else.”
Guth: “It’s important that we spread the word about FREEDOM.”
Wild Bill: “Something draws us together – I don’t know what it is – ’42 to ’02, still together.”
Bain: “These are my best friends. You have best friends in grade school, or high school, or college. But this is the bunch right here.”
Wild Bill: “You don’t know what freedom is until you lose it. We saw that in Europe.”
Bain: “This is a great country and we’ve got to keep it strong. In fact we’re in a war now, though you wouldn’t know it.
Martin: “Ambrose brought us all together. Ambrose is real sick now and we hope for the best.” We all wondered how he was doing, but no one had any recent information. (That was October 9, 2002.)
I went around the table and took some group shots of two and three and they chattered and teased and played with me the whole time. Susan said she thinks because I was close enough to their age to appreciate the good-natured flirting, but not old enough to take a tumble for them. They just knocked themselves out, like they’ve always been, cocky paratroopers at heart. After that, I felt comfortable to just plunge in, stick out my hand and introduce myself. I told them that I learned about them when I was 8 and that they’d been “my boys” since 1949. I even managed to say that without tears. Well, sort of.
An aside … When I introduced myself to Forrest, I invoked LFOD / Comrade Tonia’s name and he just beamed, as did Harriet later when I met her. You are theirs for life, Tonia, and you’re exactly right – they are really terrific people.