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An Example of Sacrifices Our Soldiers Made in WW2

by James Denison / October 20, 2012 9:14 AM PDT
They cremated this veteran, must have been his wish, since the DOD would have provided a gravesite. What's amazing is what was discovered following the cremation.
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Sorry, James. The story refers to a British soldier from
by Ziks511 / October 21, 2012 2:55 AM PDT

WW2 who was cremated and the shrapnel sifted from his remains. No Arlington plot for him.

"World War II veteran Ronald Brown, of Exeter, England, died last week at 94 and left behind a surprising war memento in his cremated remains: six ounces of metal shrapnel."

I note that the US Government has finally apologized to a late former AP reporter who was caught between Soviet chicanery and a German report of the end of WW2 in Europe. He reported it, and the government pressured AP to fire him.

I do love Nancy Wake, "The White Mouse", a talented killer of Nazi personnel having previously helped the escape of British soldiers and airmen. She's so like my Mother, and my friends' Mothers. Brits and Aussies, New Zealanders and Canadians were so wonderful during the war. And remember that Britain was bombed to pieces from 1940 to late 1944. If you want to know how bad it was, watch the original movie, The Lavender Hill Mob with Alec Guinness, and Stanley Holloway, and many car trips through vast bombed out sections of London. It was filmed about 5 years after the war's end, and there were still large stretches of London, Manchester Liverpool Birmingham Newcastle and Exeter which were utterly bleak stretches of rubble. Only Pearl Harbour, Midway, Wake, and the Aleutians were touched by the Japanese, none of them to the extent that almost anywhere in Britain was.

Rob

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We initially lived in Billericay Essex, north-east of London
by Ziks511 / October 21, 2012 3:15 AM PDT

The churcyard in Stock just 4 miles up the road was bombed by one of the big Nazi Bombs, called the Herrmann after Goering. It blew up a lot of dead people and took the surface off oneside of the roof and blew in all the windows. There were no military targest for 20 miles in any direction, and it was a very small town.

Rob

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What a vet!
by Willy / October 22, 2012 5:09 AM PDT

I consider myself very lucky. When i visit the VA for my appts. i see others and what they have to deal with. Many older like myself but for me surprisingly the "other sex" is well represented. Not only that but those in wheelchairs and other obvious scars of past conflicts. Oh BTW, conversions are just too easy to start. There's always a line...dang. -----Willy Happy

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Thank you, Willy, for your service. I hope your visits to
by Ziks511 / October 23, 2012 12:50 AM PDT
In reply to: What a vet!

the VA are just for regular things that happen to our aging cohort, but if not, I'd salute you if I had the right.

And thank you for your post, which was spot on. I certainly didn't mean to say that the US hasn't sacrificed far more men than perhaps it should in pursuing global goals. Domino Theory my ***.

After leaving Grad School studying US European relations before and during WW1, I began to read voraciously about the conflicts of the 20th Century. It can be tough sledding the older you get, and the easier it is to put yourself in the place of the "squaddies" (British Military slang for "grunts") and the horrors of their position during WW1. Or the savagery of WW2, and "Hitler's Buzz Saw" the MG-42, which US GI's were urged to disregard, because "it's bark was worse than its bite" (quotation from an actual US Army training film) The truth is better shown in Saving Private Ryan. There's no such thing as a trivial bite from a 7.62 machine gun round firing at 900 to 1500 rounds per minute.

The M60 is almost a point for point knock off of the MG-42, which is why it's so good, and so reliable.

Rob.

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Here's a good WWII story and true
by Willy / October 23, 2012 2:16 AM PDT

A i recall from a PBS show?...

It seems a native American(Navajo?) was part of an infantry outfit. His duty was forward position, as in scouting. Upon seeing what was what, it had to return as quickly as possible to warn his outfit. he noticed a horse in the area and the enemy as well. He stole the horse, shot at the enemy and made his get away. He reported his actions and observations. His actions would have been just as well been retold during past US-Indian wars.

It just so happens his native rules/custom when all were checked, he was to become the next Chief of his tribe and so he did.

Another story, I just stumbled across. Only in America it seems can local entities cause grief.

http://www.californiaindianeducation.org/native_american_veterans/van_t_barfoot/

-----Willy Happy

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enjoyed reading that
by James Denison / October 23, 2012 2:42 AM PDT

I hate HOA's and thankfully live in a neighborhood that's always rejected having one.

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Willie,a personal friend of mine that was a WWII POW,.......
by Tony Holmes / October 23, 2012 8:53 AM PDT

Richard Manners,or as I know him,Rick.

Rick is my ex-lady's step father(she was bi polar and I had to end it to keep from going crazy myself).I haven't seen Rick in 5yrs and I hope he's still well.

At 19yrs old,Rick was a Sgt and Tank commander with 3 tanks.He was in England on 5 June 1944 and personally heard Patton's speech to the troops and remembers it as though it were yesterday."Tony,blue flames came out of Patton's mouth,nothing but 4 letter words but he got a standing ovation from the troops,every one of us would have followed him straight to Hell" ! Happy

Rick was transferred to "anti-tank" shortly after that.I consider it a privilege to have sat down with this hero and talked in detail about what happened.What he did is,I think worthy of a movie !

Rick was captured at the Battle of The Bulge and spent time in three Nazi prison camps,escaping from the third one.

Rick gave an interview to a local Jersey paper several years ago.If you have 20min to spare,watch these three videos in sequence and hear it in his own words !!!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ucd-yKtzG0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sai5Ud2Jtn4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-ieLC4QLL4

The 2nd video is riviting where Rick gives details of his capture.He told me details not in that video.He was armed only with his trusty "Thompson SMG",3 Nazis discovered him and he "took care of them".He then rushed an MG42 position,killed the crew and then turned the MG42 onto the Nazis!!.

In the midst of all the gunfire he failed to notice the Nazis that approached him from behind until one of them poked him in the back with a bayonet!!!!

I would like to think that I would have acted like he did but one never does,do one??

He never told me if he got a medal from that but he's not the type that brags.

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I was going to say,Rick Manners has been interviewed several
by Ziks511 / October 23, 2012 10:25 AM PDT

times. I can even recall his face from the various programs. He seems like a great man.

Typically of that generation, I only saw my father's medals outside of photographs after he died in 1990, he knew I was an airplane and a WW2 nut as a teen, but I didn't get a whole lot out of him except short, small stories, and a lot of talk on engine management and shutdown procedures. He did love that the Douglas was a very early tricycle gear aircraft. He hated tail draggers and the lousy vision you had until the tail lifted. I got more out of his squadron friends and crew members.

That's how I found out how much he hated having 4 .50 cal machine guns added in pods on the sides of his Douglas A-20 Havoc right on either side of the cockpit. While they were bolted through to the reinforcement plates fastened to the fuselage interior structure. They were right against the surface aluminum and turned the whole airplane into a snare drum, but deeper. His bomb aimer told me. "I'd have flown with him anywhere anytime, but I did hate being in that little f@#$ing glass bubble in the nose because he dived too Goddamned Low!!" Dad had a Distinguished Flying Cross and a number of Service medals as well as a War Ends Medal or whatever it was called, it meant he was still on active duty when the War in Europe ended. His crew were great guys for an only-child to have as stand-in uncles especially when the other side of the family was in England. He never lost a crew member except once, to a road accident in England.

He was based in Suffolk, and the prime navigating point in that very flat land was The Boston Stump, the tower (without a steeple) of the Norman church atop the small hill which constituted the centre of Boston (originally Saint Botolph's Town). The crew were really glad that the land was so flat and low, because dad in his youth liked to buzz towers, particularly over France and Germany, though he stayed away from the Flak Turmen, or Flak Towers which were armoured and loaded with all the flak the Germans could produce. Nobody except the odd Mosquito messed with them..

Rob

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