So, the reason I was thinking about old soldiers is that Frank W. Buckles, the last American World War I veteran, passed away not long ago on his farm in West Virginia. The last known survivor! Close to 5 million Americans served in World War I, our involvement being from 1917 - 1918, and Mr Buckles outlived them all!
"I knew there'd be only one someday," he said a few years back. "I didn't think it would be me."
"We have lost a living link to an important era in our nation's history," Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki said of Mr. Buckles. "But we have also lost a man of quiet dignity who dedicated his final years to ensuring the sacrifices of his fellow doughboys are appropriately commemorated."
You can read history in books, magazines, encyclopedias, and online. But, just as one picture is worth a thousand words, one original source who saw the original picture is bound to be better than a lot of words written by people who didn't. I wish I could have talked to Mr Buckles, or to those two age-old Confederate soldiers.
Nothing like hearing about how things were from someone who was there!
|Cpl. Buckles 1917|
Or what if you had told them that Americans would have been to the moon, flown through the sky, sent moving pictures through the air and elected an African-American president?
Those of you having babies this year - I hope they all live to be 110 and will see the same phenomenal growth in our nation. I would love to be around in 2121 to hear about it, but go ahead and start without me!