Last night, Susan and I went to Ferndale, her home town of about 1500 people, and viewed a documentary which a schoolmate of hers spent the last six months making for the Ferndale Museum. It is entitled "Letters Home" and basically tells the story of the men and women from Ferndale who went off and served their country during World War II...through the eyes, words, and stories of those few vets still alive, and the sons, daughters, and relatives of a lot of those who have since passed.
Susan is in it, telling a story of how her dad, who was 18 years olds at the time, was about to fly a bombing mission off of an island in the South Pacific. He thought that the new type of bombs they were attaching to his Corsairs were being put on backwards. Against orders, he and a few of his comrades remounted their bombs, and an hour later while flying in formation, three planes exploded in mid air. He broke radio silence, and told the others to immediately drop their bombs. They did, and survived to return to base. He faced disciplinary action; but to his dying day, he regretted the loss of those three fellow pilots. This was just one of many stories woven through this film...it was really well done and very moving, especially if you knew the people involved.
My feelings today are of compassion for not only those who were killed in action, but also for the enormous suffering which their friends and families went through, and to some degree continue to do so today. World War II was the "hell of all hell," the "war to end all wars"; but we as a civilized and informed society continue today, with our Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Millions of people are effected, sacrificing life, love...their future for the security and preservation of freedom for our country. And yet there are those who abhor a 4% increase in their tax rate.
May God bless America.