Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Once a Screaming Eagle: A Veterans Day Post.

Herman L Eisenberg died in Chicago on October 16th, age 90. According to family legend, he served with the 101st Airborne in Bastogne, Belgium, in the winter of ’44-’45.

Perhaps the specifics are wrong but the generality is correct: Uncle Herman was, with my daddy and Uncle Manny and Sam Slavik, part of that particular generation of American soldiers who fought in – and lived through – World War II.

When people’s lives extend for so many years, they become celebrated for their longevity but not often for their long-ago service in World War II. Uncle Herman’s passing reminds me of a line by Canadian poet Archibald Lampman, “They know no season but the end of time.”


Today is Veterans Day. Join me in celebrating those you know who have served and are serving throughout the world, defending our freedoms. As long as we remember the names, they’ll never know the end of time.

In addition to Uncle Herman: Paul Hirsch Baron, Emmanuel Katz and Sam Slavik. Phil Slavik. Norman Sabel and Sherman Sabel. Joel Hirsch Goldberg. Thomas Biddulph, Richard Dailey, Richard Fox, Bill Gay and Richard Sutter. David Starr. Frank B Foulk. Chris Hrabe. AJ Smith and Paul Hoven. John Naumann. George A Schuler, Jr. Alan Vera. Nathanael Charles Yonka, Jr. Hoi Nguyen and Ellis Alexander. And the names from the Gunroom (you know who you are): Paul Johnson, KCMO, and “Charlezzzzz” Muñoz. And me.

This list grows year by year. You’re welcome to add names of your own.

*Thanks to Margie Eisenberg and Miriam Eisenberg for the photograph taken “somewhere in England in ’44.” You can see the caduceus of the US Army Medical Corps on Herman’s lapels. His jump wings are just visible under his left lapel; the division patch on his left shoulder is the “Screaming Eagle” of the 101st Airborne Division.

4 comments:

Leigh Lerner said...

Today is Remembrance Day in Canada. It is taken very seriously. Nearly everyone wears a Red Poppy for a week beforehand -- young and old. I've attended two services, one last Sunday at the local cenotaph, another today at a senior's residence. 1 out of 10 (60,000) Canadian soldiers died in WWI. Vimy Ridge is not forgotten. Canucks were in WWII two years before the USA and lost many a life. Lately we've been counting bodies from Afghanistan. So thanks for this, Richard, as I remember those who fought from my "new" neighbourhood.

karenblanchard said...

Please add Sgt. John Naumann to your list. My brother served in Iraq. And,I thank God daily he is back.

Chris Hrabe said...

Just a quick note to thank you for the mention on your blog, and to thank you for your service as well. I'm honored to be grouped with such heroes...With best regards...

Mary Jo Martin said...

Add to the list:

Clarence Everett Latham, USN
Irene Helen Phillippe, USMCWR (US Marine Corps Women's Reserve)