Tribute to my Daddy
My Daddy served in WWII. He was among 200,000 other Allied Soldiers, Marines, Navy Corpsmen and Navy Sea Bees with the Marines, who jumped into 40 feet of chilly water with a 40 lb. pack and a rifle. If they managed to keep from drowning and actually got to the beach their work was cut for them there. My Daddy went on into and across France with his rifle in one hand and a construction tool in the other. He never NEVER talked about what he saw nor what he did. But it was enough that he wasn’t the same young man than left his wife and 6 week old baby to go fight Hitler and the Jerries.
There was no PTSD treatment for these guys. (Only the ones who just completely lost it or were very wounded got any help.) These men went home, got jobs, and worked out their nightmares on their own. I can remember being wakened in the night and Mama coming in to tell me it was OK, go back to sleep, but I could hear my Daddy crying. She said, “Daddy just had a bad dream.”
I am sending this to honor and remember all the Daddies and brothers, and nurses and other women in uniform in WW2 and all the other wars since, who came home to bad dreams, who came home wounded both mentally and physically, who struggled to fit back into the life they left to go to war, who tried to find a way to make a living when there was no “hire the vet program going on.”
And especially to honor my Daddy. I am so glad that I came to honor him and understand him ‘in the living years.’ I have forgiven him for not ‘being there’ when I was little. He worked hard and was a damaged man, left to fix himself. I know his faith in God was part of that process. He even taught Sunday School during some of the worst years. He did the best he could, I know.
Charlene Reams Manning