To Dad on Veterans Day

In the right drawer of my desk there is a picture of my dad in a U.S. Army uniform. In the picture, he's about 30 years old and he is looking straight at the camera with a clear, steady, unflinching gaze. He reminds me of my youngest son. The same steady gaze, the same full lips; and, as Nathan humorously reminds me, the same hair pattern. "Thanks Grandad," Nathan smiles ruefully, rubbing his balding head. The year the picture of Dad was taken was 1944, the year of the Battle of the Bulge, Hitler's last chance to push back the Allies and to obtain a negotiated peace. 89,000 American casualties were sustained. But the Germans fared worse. My dad, innocently enough, had kept ahead of the draft because of the number of children he and Mom had. But at last even my folks' dedication to the Genesis mandate to replenish the earth was not enough to keep the Army at bay. But Dad wasn't drafted as an Army regular. In fact, he wasn't drafted at all. He was tapped as a civilian advisor....(Read Full Post)