My generation had the distinct honor of sitting at the feet of the men who faced the worst dragons of recent history on battle fronts around the world in WWII. My dad and six uncles fought in those battles. Some on land, some in the sea, some in the air. Some against Germans; some against Japanese. Dad and every one of my uncles came home.
Last week we observed the 75th anniversary of first day (D-Day) of the invasion to liberate France. Of the battles fought in that war, the beaches of Normandy were to the war in Europe, what the atomic bomb was in the Pacific war. It was beginning of the end of Axis rule.
My best friend’s dad was there on the beach, June 6th, 1944. He was a Landing Craft pilot. 20 years later he cried as he told me, a haughty High-School kid with hair down to my shoulders and a souped-up truck with glasspacks, of hearing shells bouncing off the front gate as it was being lowered, then yelling and cussing at men to get off his boat as they scrambled over the vomit, blood, wounded and dead of those in front of them.
Lawrence Danley made many such trips that day, then took his turn on land with a rifle. Mr. Danley was one of the finest, soft-spoken gentlemen I ever knew. He came back from that experience; then, like thousands of others, did what was needed to rebuild America by raising a fine family, paying his taxes and carrying his own weight. He never asked for anything in return except what he earned from his blue-collar job. Mr. Danley’s story was told over and over again in homes all across America. The battles, names and places were different, but they were the warriors who faced the fiercest evil of recent history.
They cleared a path so rebellious kids like me could have our souped-up trucks with glasspacks.
Think About it
I will remain forever grateful for those who, like that obedient young lady in Esther 4:14, were “called for such a time as this.”
I’ve no doubt you are men and women who’ve answered a call. Like so many who served then, you may have no idea of the difference you have made and continue to make.