The American citizen soldiers of of D-Day were the children of the Great Depression. Childhood for most was poverty, most living in humble Depression conditions of deprivation from which would be deemed appalling by contemporary standards of poverty. Their late teen and young adult years were spent in war. Most who fought in WWII were between the ages of 18 and 28. In that war, there were not one-year tours of duty. They served for the duration. Period. Many entered service at after the Pearl Harbor Attack by Japan on December 7, 1941, and did come home until five years later after victory in WWII. Their”college years,” so to speak, were spent in the horror of war. Hundreds of thousands never came home. Those who did come home, went to work; raised families; built the most prosperous nation in the world by their work ethic; almost never talked about their service in war except to other veterans; and never complained about the sacrifices they made in service to the nation, and to our freedom.
The citizen soldiers of D-Day and WWII taught a great lesson about patriotism, service, sacrifice, and freedom, by what they did in the D-Day Invasion and the combat which followed until totalitarianism was defeated
Unfortunately, one place in which there will be little or nothing taught about D-Day and its meaning, is in many if not most of the public progressive liberal government-run schools.
This generation of American children is being taught less and less about America’s Founding Fathers and traditional American values, and the fact that military service and valor is what has made and kept America free from the time of the Revolutionary War to D-Day to this day in the current ongoing war against Muslim jihadist terrorism
The citizen-soldiers of D-Day and WWII are owed a great debt for preserving the freedom not only for their own generation but for succeeding generations, including our generation of Americans. We pay that debt by preserving freedom for the generations of Americans who will come after us.
Regarding that debt, General Eisenhower spoke of the service of the D-Day WWII generation as showing “what free men will do rather than be slaves.” The question on this 70th Anniversary of D-Day is: Has America, and have Americans, been so “transformed” in the progressive liberal modern era from the values of the Founding Fathers and those who served on D-Day and in WWII, that we no longer have the same “will” as they did to do what must be done to preserve freedom, including to fight and die if need be, “rather than be slaves” of modern totalitarian enemies of American freedom?
May the God the citizen-soldiers of D-Day served bless and keep them; and may the nation they served always remember them, in an attitude of heartfelt gratitude, and with the courage to do what they did to preserve American freedom.
(Rees Lloyd, a longtime California civil rights attorney and veterans activist, is a member of the Victoria Taft Blogforce.)