My grandfather is dying from Parkinson’s Disease this week. It has taken hold of him and prevents him from swallowing at this point. This is his life according to the military:
Army Air Corps (US Air Force Reserves)
9.14.1942 – After passing examinations at Chanute Field, Illinois he was accepted as Army Air Corps Reservist
2.24.1942 – Called to active service and pilot training – European Theatre of War
3.1945 – Left New York City
3.13.1945 – Shipwrecked in the Atlantic Ocean on the way to the Azores
5.5.1945 – Deopham Green AFB, England and 431st Bomb Group
6.25.1945 – Left Deopham Green and weathered in Glasgow, Scotland
1.27.1945 – Left Scotland
10.23.1945 – Inactive Status
1950 – Active Reserves at Atterberry AFB, Indiana. (renamed Bakalar AFB) – Member of the 71st Sq. 434 T.C. Group
10.28.1962 – Active Duty Cuban Missil Crisis
11.28.1962 – Relieved of Active Duty
9.1964 – Applied for 20 year retirement status. Erroneously told he was 23 days short.
2.1966 0 Signed up for 3 years Active Reserve to help pay for college
5.13.1968 – Active Duty Rickenbacker AFB in Columbus, OH
12.12.1968 – Left for Viet Nam via San Francisco, Tacoma, Anchorage, Attu Island, Guam
1.20.1969 – NTrang, Viet Nam
6.8.1969 – Relieved of Active Duty
5.1970 – Inactive Status
6.13.1981 – Retirement from Air Force Reserves at age 60
His life according to me:
Took his grand daughter up in his plane at age 7 and let her fly it as co-pilot. Many more flying lessons would be had in the next years.
Never let me win a foot race. But he made me faster.
Always was there with a camera and video when his grand daughter was skating. Recorded every skating competition he attended.
Put in a swimming pool when I said I wished we had one.
Fixed my cars on several occasions when they broke down due to my driving like a maniac. He never complained and showed me how to change an alternator.
Always wanted to see me and always had a smile and positive attitude.
Loved my grandmother.
There are many more things… it’s just reflection. He was a great man. Served his country for almost his entire life. Served his family even more. I will always look back and smile. I wish I could tell him these things, but I know he knows. He just can’t hear now.
Goodbye Granddad. You were so good to everyone in your life.