A LITTLE D-DAY AFTERTHOUGHT

(Thoughts for this posting were written down, about 4:00 a.m., and then my sleepy finger bumped something on my phone and it all disappeared.   Maybe I can remember some of what I wanted to say.)

d day 75

Sometime between midnight and 6:00 a.m. on June 6th my radio stations were playing excerpts from President Trump’s D-Day speech.     Even half asleep I was becoming very   impressed with the parts of his speech I was hearing.

During the day I heard more portions of his speech, and finally I downloaded it and heard most of it all in one sitting.    I’ll try again.   (There’s just so much to listen to on the Internet and on the radio!!)

 

trump at d day 2

 

What got my attention was the story of Captain Joe Dawson who was one of the many men who “ran through the fires of hell moved by a force no weapon could destroy.”  Powerful words from the speech.

Captain Dawson ran  across the beach at Normandy under heavy fire,  knowing the men under his command in G Company were following him through almost impossible odds.      Captain Dawson  found a way to get to the top of the steep hill at the end of the beach.

This “way” is called Dawson’s Draw or Dawson’s Ridge.

Under heavy fire, he managed to toss a grenade into the German bunker that was raining down so much “death” onto the Allied troops.

It was a turning point.    Captain Dawson proved it could be done.  The German soldiers could be stopped.

The story is compelling, of course, and inspirational,  but it’s a story that also includes all of us, as individuals.   The story wants not just our applause and admiration,  but also what is so very evident today, the story needs our participation.

So,  how?    Some simple questions . . . some answers.

What made CAptain Dawson do what he did?  Who were all  these young Americans  (other countries, of course)  who attempted to storm   the beaches at Normandy that day?

“More powerful than the strength of American arms was the strength of American hearts.”  (Trump)      Do we have hearts strong for America today?   

How were the men of 1944 , young and old,  raised?      What were they like?   What built their character?    What did they know and what did they believe in?  And what did they think was worth dying for?

Captain Dawson was not remarkable in his upbringing.   He was the son of a Texas preacher,  Baptist.  It might be “unusual”  to be a preacher’s son,  the old “PK” –  Preacher’s Kid –   but it was not unusual to be brought up with (Judeo-) Christian beliefs, lifestyles, and set of values.    That was the majority of America’s “Greatest Generation.”

America’s values had been based in those two great words:  piety and patriotism.  

The sources of those two values were family, church, and schools.     They made men strong and true.   Such men raised this way were, by and large, reliable, trustworthy,  hard-working,  self-reliant, and decent.

Lest you think I’m glorifying this generation, I must tell you, then, that I lived during the same time as this  population of America  and I have witnessed that these qualities I’ve written down here really existed and applied to all Americans – in general.

Of all the things D-Day should remind us of,   the character of Americans (and others)  during this time is one of the most important lessons we can learn.   This is where our participation comes in, because, again,  our admiration for our men on D-Day  is not enough.

d day died

Nations disappear and die.  Republics have a notoriously short life span.   In order for America to endure,  we must, just must,  be the kind of people that these young men thought they were dying for.

Be,  and teach our children to be.

 

 

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