Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Day 1944 and 2011

     I expected to be in Northern Virginia today, feasting and visiting with my husband’s family.  Instead, my husband and older daughter are there, while my younger daughter and I are home waiting for antibiotics to knock the wind out her strep throat.  Having some unexpected time to myself today, I settled into my computer chair and preceded with cropping and labeling photos from my late father’s World War II photo album.

      It was a robotic task at first.  But then a notation on the back of one photo snapped me out of it.  Taken November 23, 1944.  So close to Thanksgiving, I thought.  I wondered how close, so I googled it.  November 23, 1944, was Thanksgiving Day. 
My dad on the left, sawing wood on Thanksgiving Day 1944

     As I looked at the smiling face of my daddy, so far from home, sawing wood on Thanksgiving Day somewhere in France, I got teary-eyed.  Behind that smile, was he thinking about his grandfather, aunts, uncles and cousins?  Was he wishing for a slice of turkey and a slab of pumpkin pie?  Was he cold?  Was he scared?  Was he just praying the war would end so he could go home?

     Those thoughts fast forwarded me back to today.  So many service men and women around the world are giving of themselves right now to protect home and family, just like my dad and the Greatest Generation were doing on Thanksgiving Day 1944.
     My mom would often ask everyone to say what they were thankful for before diving into our Thanksgiving dinner.  Today, I am thankful for our service men and women, for their willingness to eat their Thanksgiving dinner far away from home, sacrificing so as to protect their families, their fellow countrymen and their way of life. 

Nancy Heiser Vest


Sheila Barber said...

I thought I was done crying for the day until I read this.

Thanks Nancy.

Nancy said...

You're welcome, Sheila. :)

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