Monday June 6th marks the 72nd anniversary of the allied invasion of Normandy during World War II, known as D-Day. Ten WWII veterans returned to the battlefields they fought on, enabling closure of their war experiences.
|by Liz Perez Halperin, Lima Charlie News
So many young lives lost.
Ten World War II veterans walk for the first time among the battlegrounds they fought over 70 years earlier to liberate France from German occupation. Today they silently make their way through the Suresnes American Cemetery. Some of them looked for any familiar names on the headstones. One chose not to look.
Harold Angle, of the 112 Regt. 28th Division mumbled, “What a waste of life” as he stared at the graves. The mood was still and quiet. Memories of losing my friend and fellow Navy shipmate on the USS Cole nearly 16 years ago came to mind, as I scanned the sea of headstones. I thought, “Yes, what a waste of young lives”.
Politicians today have no clue what war is. War for a Veteran is not a war of the past. There are no past wars because it stays with you forever.
As I started towards the front entrance of the cemetery, I saw Donald Cobb and Joseph Van Eyzeren. Both had served on the USS Murphy in France. As sailors, we exchanged sea stories, one of which I shared about my friend. The mood abruptly shifted to a heated but passionate conversation about politics. Joe started, “Politicians today have no clue what war is”. Donald jumped in after that comment, “War for a Veteran is not a war of the past. There are no past wars because it stays with you forever”. We all shook our heads in agreement that war sticks with you forever.
In America, less than 1% of our citizens serve in public office. As combat veterans, standing in a cemetery with so many who fought and made that sacrifice, we voiced our concern.
Many politicians did not serve in uniform. Most never send their kids to war. What does that mean for our future generation of Americans? Our country is in need of grunts, the guys and gals that were boots on the ground in the trenches of it all, the worker bees making shit happen. We know the true cost of war.
To not have more veterans serve in office is a tragic waste of talent.
Liz Perez-Halperin, Lima Charlie News
Liz Perez-Halperin (Aviation Logistics Specialist, U.S. Navy) is a Senior Correspondent for Lima Charlie News. Liz served in the Navy for over eight years with several deployments in the 5th and 6th Fleet, before founding GC Green Incorporated, a veteran-owned “Green Build” general contracting and consulting firm.
Follow Liz on Twitter @LizPerezLC
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