Both of my grandfathers served in WWII. Both were in the Pacific Theatre. My dad’s dad died at a young age of 69 when I was only 3 years old, so I don’t have too many clear memories of him. My mom’s dad never really liked talking about his time in the war, or at least by the time I came of age he didn’t like to talk about it. He told me one story one time about how he drove a big truck full of supplies and didn’t know he was in enemy territory.
When my mom and dad started dating in the late 1960s, my two grandfathers got to talking. Both were born in 1919 and served in the War at the same time. They grew up not far from each other on rural Sand Mountain, Alabama, but never knew each other until my parents began dating. They were sharing old war stories, and in the course of their conversation, they realized they were talking about the same thing. They soon realized they were stationed on the same island at the same time, talking about the same battle. How cool is it that two poor farm boys who grew up probably 30 miles from each other traveled halfway around the world and were stationed on the same island just a couple of miles apart, then their two kids got together and eventually got married.
Not many WWII veterans left these days. Folks my grandparents age literally saved the world. It was a total war effort. My grandpas served in the Army, and my grandma stayed over here and worked in factories. They were certainly the greatest generation.
June 6, 1944 was a remarkable day. Those men and women who grew up poor during the Depression and either went around the world to fight a just fight or stayed at home and sacrificed the luxaries of the time to support the boys overseas. Truly remarkable people.