Celebration of a Hero’s Too Short Life

July 4, 2017 is an Independence Day we will never forget.  That is why I chose it.  All eleven of the the family were in Cambridge UK at the American Cemetery  to celebrate the life of my oldest brother George, a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division,  who jumped in the early hours of June 6, 1944. He  was  wounded at the battle for La Fiere Bridge in Normandy, and died on the ship back to England.  He was 20 years young.  I was not born until two years after his death.    As the last of my immediate family, I feel a responsibility to pass this story of our family’s hero to my children and their children.  I heard the other day that it takes 3 generations to forget history.  I am doing all I can to insure that my grandchildren will both  know and remember our history.

I have quite a few tales to tell as I share the steps my family took starting in Normandy and then to Cambridge. I hope this will encourage each of my readers to keep their own   heroes   and everyday  family  members and their stories alive by  repeating tales to  family today, recording,  and preserving them  for the generations to come.

Peace

http://www.AParatroopersFaith.org     Visit  to learn more.

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Modi, Texas and Trump

Image result for image of Mr Modi and trump

On a previous trip to  America, the two strong leaders met and appeared quite amicable. My friend Page sent me this article below from the Washington Post this morning. She had visited India during college and also knows my love for Incredible India.  Her question was about my opinion of Mr. Modi and had it changed. My trips to India were 2013, 2015, and 2017. I have not heard specifically from Indian friends about Mr. Modi’s work and accomplishments and struggles since his election in 2014.

I will give my thoughts and then I encourage my Indian readers to agree, disagree, and add to my text.  First I am an unashamedly Modi fan an have been from the months I spent in Ahmedabad when he was state minister of Gujarat. The infrastructure, electricity, traffic and just about everything was more efficient in Gujarat. Traveling through India where all those services were less, it seemed a no brainer for me. Elect Mr. Modi to do his hard work and magic all throughout India.

On each subsequent visit, improvements had been made. An example was public trash barrels had been placed around the city and yes they had been used. . . . . to overflowing onto the ground around. Next job is getting trash trucks to haul it away. Such a small but monumental problem with a huge amount of people. They are trying and working at it and it will get corrected.

Kashmir. . . . has been a challenge between India and Pakistan since 1947 and the division of the countries. I know that division is rarely, it seems, satisfactory for anyone. . . Ireland, Israel, and Palestine. . .  Berlin.  And to the best of my knowledge, Kashmir and the wars over it are rooted in the usual hatred and greed . . . . .money and or power.  Please add to the conversation and correct me if necessary.

Mr. Modi is a devout Hindu and now he is the leader of a country which is 85% Hindu.  There are more Muslim people in India than in Pakistan and all major and many minor religions are there. . . interacting more or less peacefully. I have heard that some Christian churches who have served and ministered for years in India running hospitals and schools are feeling less welcome now.  This is a problem in a democratic country.

Now for a very strong positive for Mr. Modi. He had promised 100%  potty installation by 2020. It seems hard to understand in a huge country with 1.3 billion people that there are many homes and areas without indoor facilities. In the Washington Post article, I read of the Gates Foundation award for progress!  That is amazing as I am sure there were high-performance expectations that were met.  Remember  India launched a rocket and beat the US to an orbit of Mars. . . .

India has a huge gift for problem-solving and an entrepreneurial spirit. Mr. Modi sees the challenges pretty clearly and inspires confidence in the huge middle class. Ironically Mr. Trump voices his base as being middle class in America. Neither is perfect and both have a huge favorable following.   Can they deliver? Can they avoid corruption and love of money and power?

I would not be surprised if, on Sunday, both leaders are filmed in a large white cowboy hats.  Don’t expect a white stallion, though.

https://wapo.st/2I7HqTB

 

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Mahatma Gandhi. . . . The Great Soul of India

illustration of mahatma gandhi for Gandhi jayanti, great Indian freedom fighter who promoted non voilence

Mahatma Gandhi was an Indian lawyer  known worldwide as the leader of Indian Freedom fighters. This goal  for freedom and home rule for Indian people was lead by nonviolent passive marches and  demonstrations in response to the conflict with Britain and her  Colonial Rule.

Gandhi was a very spiritual man who studied the world’s great faith systems and incorporated their teachings into his Hindu faith.  This gentle , devout, and kind man has left his impression on the world even today , 71 years  after his assassination by a deranged follower. Here is a quote of Gandhi’s under the title of God.

” He is a personal God to those who need His personal presence. He is embodied to those     who need His personal touch. He is the purest essence. He simply is to those who have     faith.”                Mahatma Gandhi

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9/11/19. . . . .

, 9/11 Pictures Of Rubble And First Responders

America’s darkest day was 9/11/01. I have heard stories over and over of people, where they were when they heard the news and how the images are  seared in their mind’s eye forever. Eighteen years have come and gone  in a flash as years do seemingly do. Have you noticed that years fly by and children have children of their own?Have you wondered who  old person  is staring back at  you  from  the mirror?

But have you also noticed that as fast as years come and go minutes and days can seem an eternity.?  Waiting for a diagnoses, waiting for a loved one to leave surgery,thinking you may never have a restful and complete night’s sleep after babies are born?

One of my 9 year old students asked me once why vacations go so fast and school goes so slowly. I told her as far as I could tell, it is a mystery of the universe!

But the purpose of this blog on this memorial  of our country’s  darkest day is to ask all who read my words to  NEVER FORGET  September 11,01. . . . 911. . . . . .

 

https://talesalongtheway.com/2018/09/11/remembering-9-11-01/

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Is there a Grand Canyon of the Eastern United States?

log Image result for images of grand canyon of the east

Image result for images of grand canyon of the east

As a teacher I often  taught connections by discussing how different places, people , things were alike and different. Many people are association learners as I am. The first image is of Letchworth State Park in Wyoming County NY south of Rochester. And the second the Grand Canyon. Both  have large holes with rock formation and water flowing through the beautiful formations,

Many people who grew up in central New York have happy memories of camping at Letchworth as a child.  There are many camping sites and simple cabins for inside campers. In this natural wonderland is made up of 14000 acres and 66 miles of gorgeous hiking, biking, horse and cross country skiing trails.

Image result for images of balloon rides in letchworth state park

To get a different view as you travel wherever the wind blows are Balloons Over Letchworth. This balloon is getting up close and personal at the brink of the middle falls.

Letchworth has been voted  #1 State Park 2015 with its 14,000 acres and 66 miles  for hiking, biking, horse and cross-country skiing trails. The Genesee River Gorge splints the park in two and can be up to 600 feet deep with three major waterfalls including the 110 foot drop of the  Middle Falls.  In my opinion both are amazing and worth the trip, but there is a reason why The Grand Canyon is called GRAND!

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THE FAREWELL. . . . A Comedy of Death?

Image result for images of THE Farewell

From the image above of the cast  you can see that the story was culturally specific to Chinese people…..death and how it is met as each of us must do. During the film the Chinese culturally accepted approach of keeping the prognoses from the dying person is contrasted with the western way of sharing each and every detail of the upcoming event and approaching suffering.

The film is advertised as a comedy and there are lots of smiles and even polite chuckles .  I got the feeling the serious , reserved Chinese don’t belly laugh often or at all but doesn’t mean they are humorless.

For me, thinking of our government negotiating over tariffs  with China, it would be fine to learn from them about the celebration of life which is the family’s last gift to their loved one.  In this case the matriarch. The eldest son tries to explain the Chinese culture to his daughter who is thoroughly westernized;

“She (your grandma) carried all of us through joy and sorrow. Now it is our turn to carry her through  her time of  death by shielding her from the truth.

As stated at the beginning of the credits, “This Film Is Based Upon A Lie”.   A lie yes, forbidden in all the world’s religions, but a lie told in celebration  and love for which forgiveness is given, I hope!

https://www.google.com/search?q=trailer+the+farewell&rlz=1C1CHBD_enUS744US744&oq=trailer+The+Fa&aqs=chrome.0.0j69i57j0l3j69i61.18222j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

 

 

Posted in blog f, cinema, family, film, food, health, Religions of the World, Travel, Uncategorized, USA | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Order of the Day-June 6, 1944

Here it is in black and white, the order of the day given to each heroic warier in the wee hours of June 6, 1944.

George, my brother, was to parachute at 1:30 AM.

The waves of men storming the beach hit the water at first light. The largest amphibious attack  in history had begun.

The young American, British, and Canadian  men gladly gave their lives for freedom.

As the first wave of soldiers hit the beaches, 90% gave their lives.

The second wave were killed at a rate of 80%. . . . .

The third wave. . . .

The fourth wave. . .

The fifth wave. . .

Finally after entering the bloody water and stepping over their beached comrades, the sixth wave broke  through to the German line.

The beginning of the end of Hitler’s wicked wish thanks to our warrior heroes!

 

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This is the Real Thing. . . . .D-Day -1

Image result for images of paratroopers jumping at D-day

photo from Wikipedia

All the days, weeks, and months of training are over. . . . The waiting and training are over. . . the warriors knew for certain as they received live ammunition for the first time.

And President Roosevelt  wrote and delivered a special prayer asking God’s blessing on their endeavor.

 

Franklin D. Roosevelt’s D-Day Prayer

On the night of June 6, 1944, President Roosevelt went on national radio to address the nation for the first time about the Normandy invasion. His speech took the form of a prayer.

The date and timing of the Normandy invasion had been top secret. During a national radio broadcast on June 5 about the Allied liberation of Rome, President Roosevelt made no mention of the Normandy operation, already underway at that time.

When he spoke to the country on June 6, the President felt the need to explain his earlier silence. Shortly before he went on the air, he added several handwritten lines to the opening of his speech that addressed that point. They read: “Last night, when I spoke to you about the fall of Rome, I knew at that moment that troops of the United States and our allies were crossing the Channel in another and greater operation. It has come to pass with success thus far.”

Text of Radio Address – Prayer on D-Day, June 6, 1944:

“My fellow Americans: Last night, when I spoke with you about the fall of Rome, I knew at that moment that troops of the United States and our allies were crossing the Channel in another and greater operation. It has come to pass with success thus far.

And so, in this poignant hour, I ask you to join with me in prayer:

Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity.

Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith.

They will need Thy blessings. Their road will be long and hard. For the enemy is strong. He may hurl back our forces. Success may not come with rushing speed, but we shall return again and again; and we know that by Thy grace, and by the righteousness of our cause, our sons will triumph.

They will be sore tried, by night and by day, without rest-until the victory is won. The darkness will be rent by noise and flame. Men’s souls will be shaken with the violences of war.

For these men are lately drawn from the ways of peace. They fight not for the lust of conquest. They fight to end conquest. They fight to liberate. They fight to let justice arise, and tolerance and good will among all Thy people. They yearn but for the end of battle, for their return to the haven of home.

Some will never return. Embrace these, Father, and receive them, Thy heroic servants, into Thy kingdom.

And for us at home — fathers, mothers, children, wives, sisters, and brothers of brave men overseas — whose thoughts and prayers are ever with them–help us, Almighty God, to rededicate ourselves in renewed faith in Thee in this hour of great sacrifice.

Many people have urged that I call the Nation into a single day of special prayer. But because the road is long and the desire is great, I ask that our people devote themselves in a continuance of prayer. As we rise to each new day, and again when each day is spent, let words of prayer be on our lips, invoking Thy help to our efforts.

Give us strength, too — strength in our daily tasks, to redouble the contributions we make in the physical and the material support of our armed forces.

And let our hearts be stout, to wait out the long travail, to bear sorrows that may come, to impart our courage unto our sons wheresoever they may be.

And, O Lord, give us Faith. Give us Faith in Thee; Faith in our sons; Faith in each other; Faith in our united crusade. Let not the keenness of our spirit ever be dulled. Let not the impacts of temporary events, of temporal matters of but fleeting moment let not these deter us in our unconquerable purpose.

With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogancies. Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister Nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.

Thy will be done, Almighty God.

Amen.”

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