The Greatest Generation written by Tom Brokaw is a great reminder of the sacrifice of my grandfather’s generation. The greatest generation was born from 1919 to 1929 and they lived through the Great Depression, World War 2, and the Cold War. The book is interspersed with stories of valor, remarkable courage, camaraderie, lessons taken from combat, and how many were scared during combat but did their job. I was reminded of my grandfather Donald Ballast who was a WW2 paratrooper who had some experience in the European theater. There are some great tidbits of history in this book.
The story of Raymond Russell Kelley moved me the most. He was drafted, deployed and he died during his deployment; however, his wife was pregnant. She ended up having a son and she subsequently remarried after the war. When her oldest son wanted to visit his fallen fathers grave some 50 years later, the weight and solemness of an American who gave up everything for my freedom, leaves me wanting to say thank you to all veterans.
While the writing is disjointed and sometimes skips around, it is worth a read.
Also – check out this site for 7 more lessons from “The Greatest Generation”