Tag Archives: WWII

America’s oldest living WWII vet celebrated his 111th birthday in style!

Last month I told you about Lawrence Brooks, the oldest living American to have survived World War II.

On September 12 The National WWII Museum helped him celebrate his birthday – complete with a flyover of WWII aircraft! Check out the festivities:

Hoorah!

DCG

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Help this WWII vet celebrate his 111th birthday!

Meet Lawrence Brooks, the oldest living American to have survived World War II. Looks pretty good for a man over 100, doesn’t he?!

According to this CNN article from last year, Brooks served as a support worker in the Army’s 91st Engineer Battalion, a majority African-American unit stationed in New Guinea and the Philippines during the war. He reached the rank of private first class.

CNN notes: “In an interview with the museum, Brooks recounted a story of riding in a C-47 cargo plane from Australia to New Guinea. The plane was loaded down with barbed wire but “one of the motors went out on it,” he said.

To lighten the plane, those aboard threw much of the cargo into the ocean. Brooks threw the boxes out of the plane like his life depended on it: there were only enough parachutes on the plane for the pilot and the co-pilot.

Brooks said he joked to the aircraft’s pilot: “If he’s going to jump, I’m going to grab him.”

The National World War II Museum is helping him celebrate his birthday next month. They are asking for people to send him a birthday card!

Here’s the request from their Facebook page:

“This year our birthday celebration of America’s oldest living WWII veteran Lawrence Brooks will look a little different. With the global pandemic, we must forgo our traditional get together in favor of some socially distanced fun. Mr. Brooks, a New Orleans native, will turn 111 this year, and we are asking everyone to send in birthday cards to the Museum so that we can deliver them to his home. Please send your card to the address below by Tuesday, September 1:

The National WWII Museum
c/o Happy 111th Mr. Brooks!
945 Magazine Street
New Orleans, LA 70130

Thank you for your help in making Mr. Brooks’ 111th birthday a special one!”

Happy Birthday, Mr. Brooks and THANK YOU for your service!

DCG

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Socialist Bernie Sanders: “I have seen up close the pain, death, and despair caused by war”

Demorats have their panties in a wad over President Trump ordering the drone killing of Iranian militia terrorist, Qasem Soleimani. As noted by Ben Shapiro, “According to Democrats, giving the Iranian terror regime access to hundreds of billions of dollars with no restrictions on terror use or ballistic missile testing was good, and killing the terrorist responsible for hundreds of American deaths is bad.”

That’s what TDS has done to the demorats.

Bernie Sanders is chiming in by claiming he’s got some “personal experience” into the despair caused by war. From a tweet of his on January 3:

As the former chair of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs, I have seen up close the pain, death, and despair caused by war. And I know that it is rarely the children of the billionaire class who face the agony of reckless foreign policy.”

Well Bernie, sorry to burst your bubble but I’m going to say that YOUR 39 YEARS of bureaucratic experience doesn’t qualify you AT ANY LEVEL to speak about the pain of war.

There are claims on the internet that his parents were Holocaust survivors. They are not. He’s got nothing on the parental experiences of the pain caused by war.

All he’s got is the bureaucratic talking points.

Bernie Sanders has ZERO military experience so he’s got nothing on the individual experience of the pain caused by war.

All he’s got is the bureaucratic talking points.

Bernie Sanders spent his honeymoon in the Soviet Union in 1988

Bernie Sanders has no children so he’s never experienced parental anxiety of the pain caused by war.

All he’s got is the bureaucratic talking points.

I can up you several times, Mr. Sanders:

My father served in the Korean War. His experiences were terrible. I do not care to publicly share the full details I had growing up of his service and the effect it had on him. All I will say is that several childhood events of his “episodes” had a lasting effect on me.

I had three uncles who served in WWII. One of them never came back.

My boyfriend is in the military and has done a tour in the sandbox. Hey Bernie, ever get a text from a loved one in the bunker who is receiving incomings? On Christmas?

These experiences of mine are NOTHING compared to the following U.S. citizens who had NO REQUESTED RESPONSE from the Obama Administration while they were being attacked for a “YouTube video:”

How convenient for Sanders to turn the attack on an U.S. embassy and our much deserved response into an economic warfare card to benefit his clueless sheeple.

I mean really Mr. Sanders, ask yourself this:

DCG

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USS Grayback submarine discovered 75 years later

Read about the history of this submarine here.

Great job by the folks at the Lost 52 Project. About their mission:

“Our mission objective is to provide the fullest possible documentation and accounting of these locations for our missing WWII Navy Sailors, their families and the nation. Our mission goes beyond discovery and exploration and includes site surveys, developing complete database on each submarine, enabling community outreach and build education components that will stand the test of time. This includes collecting and preserving memorabilia, artifacts, scanned correspondence, official documentation, oral histories, films and photos that are shared by family members. A total of 52 U.S. Submarines were lost in WWII with 374 officers and 3131 men of the Submarine Force who gave their lives. Currently there have been seven of these “Lost 52” that have been found. Our team has discovered five of those submarines and we are engaging with several organizations who have also made discoveries.”

Read about their mission of locating WWII submarines here.

DCG

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Friday funnies!

DCG

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A Hero to Remember: Francis Currey, one of three remaining WWII Medal of Honor recipients, dies at 94

The above video is from 2013.

Rest in Peace, brave soldier.

From Fox News: Francis Currey, one of the three living World War II Medal of Honor recipients and whose likeness was used to create Medal of Honor G.I. Joe in 1998, died on Tuesday. He was 94.

Currey, a native of Selkirk, New York, joined the U.S. Army when he was just 17. He was in Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge in 1944 as an automatic rifleman with the 3rd Platoon.

On Dec. 21, 1944, as German tanks approached Currey and his company while they were guarding a bridge crossing, Currey found a bazooka in a nearby factory. He crossed the street to secure rockets during an intense fight from enemy tanks and infantrymen. With the help of a companion, Currey knocked out a tank with one shot.

Moving to another position, Currey killed or wounded three German soldiers standing in the doorway of an enemy-held house. He emerged from cover and alone advanced to within 50 yards of the house. He ended up rescuing five Americas who were trapped and taking fire inside a building.

According to his biography on the Congressional Medal of Honor website, “Sgt. Currey was greatly responsible for inflicting heavy losses in men and material on the enemy, for rescuing 5 comrades, 2 of whom were wounded, and for stemming an attack which threatened to flank his battalion’s position.”

Currey received the Medal of Honor near Reims, France, on July 27, 1945, when he was 20 years old.

After being discharged from the Army in 1946, he served as a counselor in the Veterans Administration. He also owned a landscaping business.

He is survived by his widow and children.

The other two living World War II Medal of Honor recipients still alive are Charles Coolidge in Tennessee and Hershel “Woody” Williams.

DCG

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Statue of kissing VJ Day sailor vandalized a day after his death

How miserable must your life be to vandalize a statue dedicated to a beautiful, iconic moment?

From NY Post: A day after the sailor seen kissing a woman in a nurse’s uniform in an iconic photo snapped in Times Square died at age 95, a statue in Florida commemorating the couple was vandalized with a “#MeToo” painted in red.

Police responded early Tuesday to someone vandalizing the “Unconditional Surrender” statue in Sarasota, where they found the hashtag about sexual assault and harassment painted on the woman’s left leg, according to the Herald-Tribune.

After searching the area, officers did not find other objects that were defaced or any spray paint bottles. There also was no surveillance video of the incident.

“The approximate damage is estimated to be more than $1,000 due to the large area that the graffiti covers, and the resources needed to repair it,” police said.
The city’s Department of Public works washed off the graffiti by 9 a.m., police said.

George Mendonsa, the jubilant sailor shown kissing white-clad dental assistant Greta Zimmer Friedman at the “Crossroads of the World” on Aug. 14, 1945, died Monday at the age of 95. Friedman died in 2016 at age 92.
Known as V-J Day, it was the day Japan surrendered to the US.

The indelible image by Alfred Eisenstaedt became one of the most famous photographs of the 20th century.

“It was the moment that you come back from the Pacific, and finally the war ends,” Mendonsa told CBS News in 2012.
Some view the smooch as a celebration, but others consider the act a sexual assault by modern standards.

“Unconditional Surrender” was created by Seward Johnson, who was inspired by a lesser-known photograph by Navy photographer Victor Jorgensen, of the same scene captured by Eisenstaedt.

DCG

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Give us a break, plead Seattle’s maligned millennials

millenials vs other generations

Don’t blame millennials…they have it much tougher


From Seattle Times: Give it a rest, boomers and Xers. Millennials have heard plenty by now about how they’re just the worst generation ever.
If their detractors are to be believed, they’re entitled, narcissistic, selfie-taking, self-absorbed, “everyone gets a trophy” brats, and they’re to blame for the demise of everything from cereal, paper napkins and bar soap to chain restaurants, the diamond industry and even democracy.
So stop, please, say some Seattleites who were born between 1977 and 2004 — that’s the Millennial Generation, depending on which definition you’re using.
“It’s completely unfair,” said Ashley Krzeszowski, 24, of West Seattle. “We’ve been handed a broken system and we’re just doing the best we can.”
Krzeszowski just graduated from the University of Washington with degrees in cellular, molecular and developmental biology and applied mathematics. She has a job at the same lab she’s been working at for the last few years and yet she is still living with her parents.
No need to judge, she said; it makes “prudent financial sense” for her to do so at this time and with the cost of housing in Seattle as high as it is. “As a group, we work hard and try hard,” she said. “But when my parents bought their house, it was two times their annual income and now houses are 10 times most people’s annual salaries.”
“Give us a break,” she said. “All we’re really asking for is enough pay for our phones, treat ourselves to a cup of coffee every once in a while and buy a dress off the sale rack. Is that really too much?”
Cheryl Kaiser, a professor of psychology at the University of Washington, admires the Millennial Generation and finds her recent crops of students a “joy to teach.”
They’re creative, unrestrained by convention and willing to take risks, she said. In addition they’ve grown up in tough times and have had to be a little more scrappy than their parents. They ought not take the criticism to heart. “Each generation tends to see the new generation as not as good as their own,” she said. “You see it all the time.”
The generation we belong to is part of who we are; we share norms, values and ideologies with our age mates, she explained. “If our generation does something in a specific way or holds specific values, we come to think of those as the right way, the good way and if one generation sees another doing something different, it can feel threatening, as if there’s something wrong with their way.”
“It’s easier to blame the other group and say they’re doing it wrong than it is to question how we’re doing it,” Kaiser said.
Tim Miller, a 52-year-old musician who plays music at Westlake Park with his friend, Paul Vegors, 24, said he knows that tendency well. “It’s silly, but it’s human nature really,” Miller said. “When you are threatened or in pain, you’re going to look around for someone to blame because someone else has to be responsible.”
In a piece written for The Center for Generational Kinetics, Curt Steinhorst writes that people in his generation do not like the phrase “millennial” as it brings with it connotations of laziness and entitlement. In downtown Seattle, a dozen or so young adults who were asked about their generation seemed to confirm that.
Many flinched when asked if they were millennials and then explained why they felt they were really a bit on the young side to be held accountable for such a litany of woes: the death of golf, vacations, the 9-5 workweek and the lowly cork.
“We’re just growing up, and it’s not all our fault,” said Sandra Quiroz, 19, who works near Westlake Center.
“Don’t they know that a lot of things that are going on are not really under our control?” said Pinkeo Phongsa, a 15-year-old visitor from California who believes she is in the much-maligned generation.
“I really think that everyone is just kind of looking for a scapegoat for a lot of things,” said Angela Olson, 24. “There are things about the way society is going that seem wrong, but it’s not all millennials’ fault. We can’t really take the blame as we were made this way.”
“They don’t want to blame themselves, so they blame us,” said 25-year-old William Co, who works at a tech firm near downtown Seattle. “Every generation blames the next one,” said Rian Ellis, 27. “Given enough time we’ll be complaining about the next generation as well.”
But maybe not. Perhaps age really does bring with it a little chance for wisdom, or at least a little charity.
“You can’t really blame them,” said 69-year-old Tim Micek. “They’ve got it much tougher than we did. They get nothing but my sympathy.”


Shortly after I scheduled this post, I came across this on the Daily Mail:
Millennials aren’t ready for the ‘reality of life’ and suffer from panic attacks and anxiety problems, research finds: Millennials aren’t ready for the ‘reality of life’ and suffer from panic attacks and anxiety problems, new research has revealed.
A study of 2,000 young people preparing to start university found that many aren’t ready for the challenges of living independently. 
The research found that more than half of prospective students don’t know how to pay a bill and that many believe that nights out cost more than paying rent. Researchers said that many would-be students have been left worried and confused by the prospect of leaving home to start higher education.
The study found 61 per cent of millennials are anxious about the prospect of starting university, while 58 per cent are having trouble sleeping and 27 per cent are having panic attacks.
Millennials…just doing the best they can.
DCG

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Historic 48-star US flag that was first on Utah Beach on D-Day is up for auction

I really hope whoever ends up with this flag will donate it to a museum. What a great piece of history!

AFP/Getty Image

AFP/Getty Image


From Daily Mail: A rare American flag that was carried by US troops on the historic D-Day invasion During World War II is set to be auctioned off.  The 48-star flag has been kept by the captain of the boat for decades that led the first troops on to Utah Beach on June 6, 1944.
‘This flag is easily one of the most significant artifact of the D-Day invasion that exists in private hands,’ said Marsha Dixey, a Historical expert and Consignment Director at Heritage Auctions.
‘We all know the harrowing story of those chaotic dawn hours as America made its push onto the beaches of Normandy.  The fact of its survival is nothing less than a testament to the irresistible force of the American will.
The torn and tattered flag that is replete with a bullet hole from a German machine gun is expected to fetch as much as $100,000 in the auction.
According to Heritage Auctions, the 30 feet by 57 feet banner is the ‘sole war souvenir of US Navy Lieutenant Howard Van Der Beek’ when it was flown from the stern of Landing Craft Control 60.
After the war, he went on to become an English professor and wrote about the moments before they charged the beach in his memoir of his war experiences titled Aboard the LCC 60: Normandy and Southern France, 1944. ‘At some point I looked astern and saw what lay at sea behind us: the greatest armada the world had ever known, the greatest it would ever know,’ he wrote in the book.
Getty Image

AFP/Getty Image


‘I must have been overwhelmed by the sight as I clung to the rail for a moment to take in the magnitude of that assembled fleet, many great, gray ships majestically poised in their positions; larger numbers of unwieldy landing vessels heaved by the heavy sea; and countless numbers of smaller amphibious craft tossed mercilessly by the waves.’
According to Heritage Auctions, American flags that have been involved in battles have long occupied the ‘upper strata of military collectibles.’  Nearly a decade ago, flags that belonged to JEB Stuart and George Armstrong Custer fetched $956,000 and $896,000 respectively.
The 48-star US flag is set to go on auction Jun 12 in Dallas, Texas.
DCG

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World War II Lovebirds Celebrate 70th Wedding Anniversary: 'They've Stuck Together Through Thick and Thin'

Conway's wedding portrait/Photo courtesy of Eileen Kotarski

Conway’s wedding portrait/Photo courtesy of Eileen Kotarski


From People Magazine: Their love story spans decades. Seventy years ago, Francis Conway, then 24, proposed to Marcella McAllister, then 23, in a letter from overseas – the Army soldier was stationed in Japan during World War II and “couldn’t wait” until he got home. The couple, who married on January 5, 1946, celebrated their 70th anniversary in Batavia, New York, on January 2 in a ceremony put on by their children.
“They are as in love as they were when they first got married,” Francis, 94, and Marcella’s eldest daughter, Eileen Kotarski, 69, tells PEOPLE. “You can tell by the way they look at each other and the way she smiles at him.”
Kotarski says there were 80 family members in attendance for the heartwarming anniversary celebration, including seven of Marcella, 93, and Francis’s nine children, 20 grandchildren, 36 great-grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.
Kotarski says her mother and father, both in wheelchairs, still love teasing each other.
Photo courtesy of Eileen Kortaski

Photo courtesy of Eileen Kortaski


“We asked mom and dad if they knew why we were celebrating and my mom said, ‘An anniversary!’ and then dad winked at her and goes ‘Whose?’ ” Kotarski says with a laugh. “It’s adorable, you can tell they are still so happy with each other.”
The longtime lovebirds reside in the New York State Veterans Home in Batavia and are “completely happy and content with each other.” “They’ve stuck together through thick and thin,” their daughter says. “And they always will.”
DCG

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