My maternal grandfather—who reportedly also worked as a driver for General Eisenhower—was stationed on a British fishing vessel on D-Day, and he had to commandeer the boat after its captain, trying to cope with his nerves before sunrise, drank too much.
My paternal grandfather spent World War II as a surgeon in England. My father and my uncle hardly knew who he was when he returned home.
My father-in-law did two tours in Vietnam with the 82nd Airborne. On a training jump, his chute didn’t open on time, and he wound up with a hip in his ribcage. He’s still strong as ever today.
For them and everyone who has served in the military, I am grateful. For those currently in service (I’m thinking especially of my athlete friends Jesse Card and Holly Schryer), I am hopeful that your duties continue safely in the service of peace at home and abroad.
Addendum: Wes reports on his grandfather’s service
James was a captain in northern Africa with a division of thirty-nine men who were vaccinated for yellow fever. Unfortunately, they were given live virus and he was the only one that lived.