Several Interviews With WWII Veterans Who Are Struggling Today.

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Military news…

New electronic records system crashes at VA hospitals as lawmakers question officials about earlier system outages

House lawmakers told officials of the Department of Veterans Affairs this week to halt their launch of the agency’s new electronic health records system at any other facilities until the problems that caused outages at the first two medical centers to use the new system are fixed.

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Naval Submarine Base New London honors Gold Star families

The Naval Submarine Base in Groton, Conn., held a flag dedication event Tuesday afternoon in honor of Navy Gold Star Awareness Month.

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US Army in Germany resumes training Ukrainian forces, with focus on Western weaponry

The resumption of the Joint Multinational Training Group Ukraine mission has Ukrainian soldiers working with 155 mm howitzers, radars and other gear.

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Rebuilding US relationship with Russia will require ouster of Putin, senator says
Russian President Vladimir Putin is not fit to serve, said Sen. Thom Tillis of North Carolina, and any opportunity to restore ties with Russia will need to be predicated on the next leader of the country.

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Denmark and prospective NATO member Sweden say Russia flew into their airspace

A Russian spy plane violated NATO airspace in recent days, prompting the Kremlin’s ambassador to Denmark to be summoned over the incident, the top Danish diplomat announced.

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Biden seeks to rob Putin of his top scientists with visa lure

The Biden administration has a plan to rob Russian President Vladimir Putin of some of his best innovators by waiving some visa requirements for highly educated Russians who want to come to the U.S., according to people familiar with the strategy.

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On the battlefield, Ukraine uses Soviet-era weapons against Russia

In a town near the front with Russia in eastern Ukraine, grease-stained Ukrainian soldiers huddled over the engine hatch of a battle-damaged T-64BV battle tank. They had been working for three days straight.

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What follows are several combined interviews for my upcoming book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life. with veterans who are at the Trinka Assisted Living Facility for veterans.

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Interviews with Veterans from The Trinka Assisted Living Facility

The following interviews will not have names. I just used the initials of the men who fought mostly in WWII. Others were in Korea, Vietnam, and Afghanistan. I am honoring their wishes to not name them, but they are still heroes. They are all residents of the Trinka Davis Assisted Living Facility in Carrolton, Georgia. Their stories may make you sad and yet give you hope.

My first interview is with WJ. He passed away recently. He was almost 97.

Tell us why you enlisted since you were married and had a small child?

WJ– I felt it was my duty just like the many other men and women who enlisted. I joined the Navy in 1942. I became a Petty Officer. I served in many navel stations during my career.

Then what happened?

WJ- I became seriously ill in 1945. I was granted total disability, and received an honorable discharge.

What happen in the private sector?

WJ- I worked for a lumber company, and later for a plastic company. I eventually started a lumber company that I operated until I retired.

+WJ and his wife received the coveted, “The Book of Golden Deeds Award,” for consistently serving their fellow man, and for their kindness and compassion for others.

WJ- Had his own garden where he raised tomatoes, and okra. He also fed the local birds with his bird feeder, which he could see right out of his window. The birds really flocked there and he had to reload the feeders several times a day.

WJ- was a heavy supporter of the local Masonic Lodge, which he had been a part of for over 65 years. He also was an avid recruiter for the American Legion Post in Carrollton, Georgia.

+ This kind of interview does not show you the guts and gore that war brings, but it shows you that WWII veterans are just like you and I. They are no different, and deserve equal treatment in all phases of life. I was very honored to write about WJ and his service to his country.

CB- is another member of the same assisted living facility that houses only military veterans. I will be sharing more about this facility here.

CB- At 19 years old CB sat bravely on a halftrack behind a .50 caliber machine gun firing steadily at the attacking German troops. Because of what he did he is almost totally deaf now. He was wounded in the leg with shrapnel and was sent back into the battle again. He was wounded the second time and received two Purple Hearts. (Maybe he should have received some other medals.)

When did you get into the Army?

CB- I was drafted into the Army in June of 1943. I started basic training, but I wasn’t able to finish because of a birth defect in my feet.

So what did they do with you?

CB-They assigned me to a work detail on the base. From there I was transferred to Company A of the 48th infantry Battalion and sent to Europe. I spent my time in Europe manning a .50 caliber machine gun. The noise ruined my hearing, and I have still had a heavy loss today. I am 90 years old. I was discharged and started my own funeral home.

As of this writing CB is still at Trinka Davis Assisted Living in Georgia. He is receiving intensive care for the many wounds and hearing loss he faced while serving our country.

CH- is a young thirty something Army veteran who served in Iraq during the war. He cannot tell you his story personally, because his disability has taken away his capacity to verbalize anything much beyond some grunting sounds.

He has to be fed through a tube in his stomach. What ever happened to him also caused a muscular disorder causing him to not be able to use his hands. In order to communicate his needs to others, he has a small letter board letter board and he has to force in his hands to point to one letter at a time.

His condition is irreversible, and the price he paid for his service should never be forgotten.

The “story,” is about HY- He was a highly decorated WWII veteran. He spent eighteen months as a prisoner of war in Germany. He earned the Distinguished Flying Cross, Meritorious Service Medal, and two Purple Hearts.

HY- entered the Air force in 1942. (I was only three years old then.) He was nineteen years old. He attained the rank of Staff Sergeant while serving with the 376th Bomber group, which was a part of the 514th Squadron.

He was a turret gunner on a B-24 Liberator bomber. His plane was shot down over Italy on December 28th 1943. During the war the average life span of a turret gunner was approximately three missions.

HY- was wounded and had to parachute to survive. He was quickly spotted by the Germans and captured. He was taken from Italy to Austria. HY spent eighteen difficult months in Stalag 17 as a prisoner of war.

HY- was tortured, but often treated pretty well. HY went from 160 pounds to 118 pounds. He was liberated three days after the war ended.

HY- was discharged for the Army with 100% disability. He had to live with the memories from Stalag 17.

PA-served in the military from 2008 to 2010. While serving in Iraq PA contracted an airborne virus that went through his nose and into his brain. This caused tremendous irreversible damage. Despite several brain surgeries PA had serious short term memory, and some long term memory problems. This made it extremely hard to function in a normal matter.

PA was a “gentle giant,” to his friends. Because of the many surgeries PA functioned more like a child. He was one of the most gut wrenching cases at Trinka Davis.

+As you can see I didn’t interview many of the veterans at Trinka Davis Assisted Living, but I was able to share their stories of their life in the military, and after. Their privacy is of the utmost importance.

The next veteran is not a WWII veteran, but he served in Korea and Vietnam. He was a Master Sergeant who was in the Air Force. He Enlisted in 1949. He had a top secret clearance as a Flight Engineer on a C-124 Globemaster. He flew out of Warner Robins Air Force Base in Georgia, and several other bases.

Where did you do most of your flying?

FL We did most of our flights over Vietnam. We were exposed to Agent Orange, and we had a few bullets holes in our plane from time to time.

So that is about all I learned personally from FL, but he went on to start his own deli business. He also worked on maintenance for the U.S. Postal Service, and crafted glass. Eventually his health worsened to where he was sent to Trinka Davis Assisted Living along with many other veterans. While there he has become famous for his paintings, and model airplanes that he built. He was 85 years old as of this writing.

JG retired from the Army as a Sergeant First Class on December 21, 1992 after serving twenty-two years.

His training was at Fort Gordon Georgia, where I was trained. He went to the same Signal school I went to. I feel especially close to this hero. He had the usual top secret clearance routine, and even went to the Pentagon to take a polygraph test.

(I didn’t go that far, but my mom was shocked when the FBI came knocking at her door to ask questions.)

JG was then assigned the elite United States Special Security Group. They worked several bases to support the Commanding General, and the Chief of Staff at those bases.

JG Served in many countries like Korea, Germany, South East Asia, Thailand, and Turkey. This was all going on while he was apart from his family. Deployments can be very hard on a family.

Toward the end of his service JG started have some health issues. He was unable to find a job because of it. The VA gave him a 40% disability rating. His condition grew much worse and he was given 100% disability.

+As you can see I didn’t get interviews with many of the veterans at Trinka Davis Assisted Living, but I was able to share their life in the military, and after. Their privacy is of the utmost importance to me.

LB enlisted on the Army at the age of 19 just as the Vietnam war began. He served in the Army for 17 years. Six of those years were in Germany and two years near the dangerous DMZ (Demilitarized Zone,) in Korea. (I was also deployed to Korea. I went to see the DMZ Zone. I was a radio man just like LB. Small world.)

LB Developed high blood pressure and was discharged from the military in 1986. After his discharge he became an eighteen wheeler truck driver. That didn’t last long because of his progressing health problems. He had two strokes, which made it impossible for him to continue working. LB is extremely quiet about his own life. We do know he paid a high price for his dedication to his country.

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Some of the interviews and information was very difficult for me. Keep coming back to see more interviews. Better yet…go to the top of this page and click on Subscribe. When you all future posts will come directly to your inbox.

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Checking in on you. How are you doing? Is everything going OK, or are you struggling?

FEAR NOT!

There are over 14,572 veterans on this site who have your back.

Here is what I am asking you to do…please share this site with as many other veterans as you can. It has helped so many.

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If you are battling mentally, but you are losing, GET HELP!!

Here is a toll free number that you can call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you, and they will not hang up until they know you are OK.

1-800-273-8255…texting 838255.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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The Military Battle for Okinawa Was very Bloody and Dangerous.

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Military news…

Special Forces colonel arrested in 2020 for domestic violence could have his tab revoked

“They’re using tab revocation as a tool to police the profession within the 

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Russian tanks get stuck in mud during training exercise near Ukraine border

It’s a sticky situation.

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There’s an M1 Abrams named ‘Obi-Wan’ Kenobi in Poland keeping an eye on Europe right now

Trust your feelings (and the several tons of kick-ass you’re riding around in
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A Air Force spy plane pilot saved a civilian aviator in distress from 70,000 feet

“As a U-2 pilot, I was flying twice as high than most airliners, so I had a very good line of sight with my radios.”

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Air Force officer gets temporary COVID vaccine reprieve after court upholds religious exemption

The ruling is the first for a member of the Air Force.

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Soldiers are lighting themselves on fire for official training purposes

“The most challenging aspect of the training was overcoming the initial fear.”

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Military service academies received more reports of sexual assault last year than ever recorded

“[W]e recognize this is a troubling problem.”

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‘We’re not doing an Iwo Jima again’ — Marine general describes what ground combat with China would be like

“I’m tired of analyzing,”

(We eventually won the battle, but had very heavy losses of life.)

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In one of my interviews in my upcoming book, Signs of hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of life, Captain Bob Coury had a company of men stationed in Okinawa. Their only job was to unload the ships as they came into the Okinawa harbor. Sounds easy, except for the fact that Japanese pilots were bombing them, and even flying their planes into the ships.

Read the whole story when you get the book.

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Come back for more excerpts from the book, Signs of hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life. Better yet… go to the top of this page and click on “Subscribe.’ when you do all future posts will directly to your inbox.

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Checking in on you…How are you doing? Are you struggling with memories?

FEAR NOT!

There are over 13,890 fellow veterans here who have your back.

If you are battling mentally, because of your love for others, but it isn’t working, GET HELP!!

Here is a toll free number that you can call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you, and they will no hang up until they know you are OK.

1-800-273-8255…texting 838255.

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit from this site, please let them know.

Searching for Gold Star Families to Interview for my Upcoming Book

+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit from this site, please let them know.

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Military news…

Thanks to a U.S. Marine’s GoPro deployment video, we can see what the U.S. evacuation of Afghanistan actually looked like. This isn’t the sanitized version presented by public affairs: this is the confusion, anger and antics that actually marked life on the ground in the war’s final days.

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The Department of Defense needs your help renaming nine Army forts and two Navy ships that were named after people who served the Confederate States of America during the Civil War. . That’s right, the military is crowd-sourcing name ideas for its installations, so it’s up to you to make the dream of Forty McFortface, or perhaps something better like Fort Alwyn Cashe, a reality.

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 The five sailors killed in a recent helicopter crash aboard the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln provide a stark reminder that seemingly routine military operations can turn just as deadly as combat. That is especially the case when it comes to the difficult task of landing a helicopter on an aircraft carrier.
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16 years ago, Army Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn Cashe died after walking through fire three times to save his fellow soldiers from the burning wreckage of their Bradley Fighting Vehicle in Iraq. But despite being endorsed by the Pentagon eight months ago to receive the Medal of Honor for his incredible act of sacrifice, Cashe has still not received it.

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For the past three presidential administrations, top military leaders went out of their way to avoid any conversation with the American public about what was happening in Afghanistan and why. But now that U.S. troops are finally out, military leaders have no excuse to keep their work secret. The war is lost, and the country deserves to know why.

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Ever want to take your boss to court for being a jerk? It’s a tactic that rarely works in the military, but it did for the legendary Army Maj. Richard “Dick” Winters of “Band of Brothers” fame. That’s right, Winters out-foxed the Army’s green weenie just like he did the Nazi’s. in WWII.

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I just finished putting the table of contents together for my upcoming book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life.

All I really have are some follow up interviews. I also want to do another interview with a Gold Star mother, but I seem to have lost her contact information.

If you know Vickie Ziegler, please tell her to connect with me at doug@dougbolton.com.

I have stopped sharing excerpts from the book, because my publisher said SLOW DOWN! Do not give so much away free.

You can find many of them by searching the archives.

Better yet….

You can go to the top of this page and hit “subscribe” to be a part of this site, which has over 12,970 fellow veterans. When you do, all future posts go right straight to your inbox.

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What’s happening in your world soldier? Is the earth spinning too fast for you? Do you fear sleeping at night?

FEAR NOT!

With the 12,970 fellow veterans on this site who have your back, you are in good hands.

But! If it is just too much for you right now, GET HELP!!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until the know you are OK.

1-800-273-8255…texting 838255

____________________________________________

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

_____________________________________________

+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit from this site, please let them know.