I am ashamed to say that I forgot it was Veterans Day today. I was driving through McDonalds and KBULL 93 was playing their tribute to our troops. I have to hand it to country radio--they always come through on the patriotic holidays. Anywho, I immediately thought of my own hero, my Grandpa Poole.
He served in World World II, where he was captured by the Japanese and forced on the Bataan Death March. He then spent 3 1/2 years in a prison camp. 3 1/2 years! He was starved, mistreated and nearly died. I have always marveled at how he got through it. He says it was his faith in God, his love of this country and the knowledge that his mother was praying for him.
Today I have been thinking about his mother. For much of that time, she didn't know where he was or if he was even alive. She had five daughters but he was her only son. I can't even bear to think of sending one of my precious son to war.
To this day, my grandpa does not get emotional talking about the war or the way he suffered. He does get emotional talking about seeing his mother for the first time after the war. When he flew home, all of the troops' families were out on the tarmac waiting for the plane to come to a stop. When my grandpa came down the stairs onto the runway, his mother saw him for the first time in 5 1/2 years. She couldn't wait another minute to embrace him. She broke through the crowd control barriers and ran to him. She grabbed him and just clung to him.
Our country is going through some rough times right now. It seems all I ever hear about is how bad the economy is and all of the problems with the United States. But I just want to say how much I love our country and how grateful I am for our freedom--even our freedom to complain. I'm grateful for all the mothers throughout the history of this country who sent children to war, especially for the mothers whose children never returned home. Today is their day too.