Ode To My Veteran
My grandfather was a Marine. He fought in Saipan
World War II left a mark on him. When I was five, I asked him he ever killed anyone in the war.
I was a child. I didn't know better.
He hugged me. That's all he did but for some reason I knew this was a significant moment for both of us.
You remember things like that.
He joined the Marines the day he graduated from Dresden High School. As did four of his brothers. Two of his brothers ran into each other in a foxhole in Europe in Germany.
My cousins and I love that story.
They all made it home.
He loved football, and was scouted by the University of Tennessee as a running back but the war side-lined his plans. He was a fine man, and even 26 years after his death, his influence over me is still very deep-seated. And its all good.
He loved his country. Served as a commander for the American Legion for years.
He was politically active. He didn't like Eleanor Roosevelt or Harry Truman.
He headed the Republican Political Party in the seventies in the county where I lived. He didn't like Richard Nixon very much either and respected Jimmy Carter although he voted for Ford and Reagan.
He was a rural postman and would bring treats to dogs on his route. He liked lots of pepper on his bologna sandwiches with lots of mustard.
He was a veteran.
And he was a good man.