Last night, my Mom and Dad would have danced at the Legion as they did every year on their anniversary, and then donned their uniform the next day to commemorate their lost friends, comrades in arms and all the lost souls who tragically died in wars. I say prayers, even though agnostic, sending it to the creators of this wild and wonderful universe, that we do not ever have to do it again. Even if it may go nowhere, I am comforted in my memories and hope for the future.
My Mom and Dad, many uncles and Grandfather went to war in both WW1 and 2. My Dad lost a brother and my Mom lost her fiance. I am so proud of their service, but I hope that for my son's sake, world war will just be a distant memory. If you also have family to honour, please, place them in this thread if you wish.
There are some troops I recognize every year on Veteran's Day:
Grand Forks AFB, 1983: A B-52 bomber exploded on the ground due to an overheated fuel transfer valve. The explosion blew out the forward landing gear, which rendered the crew entry hatch unusable. 5 enlisted mechanics died in the fire while trying to escape via the cockpit windows. Their heavy winter clothing was too bulky and trapped them halfway out the windows.
Barksdale AFB, 1987: A KC-10 exploded on the ground during refueling. The fuel manifold operator was killed instantly and two others were injured.
Fairchild AFB, 1987: A KC-135A crashed on base while practicing airshow maneuvers, they were flying very low and in-trail behind a B-52. Jet wash from the B-52 caused two of the tanker's engines to flame out. The pilot's last act was to put that aircraft down in the only open field between the maintenance offices, flying squadron offices, liquid oxygen plant, and base shopping mall. None of the facilities were damaged. Good flying, Captain Johnson.
None of these folks were at war, but they died performing difficult, hazardous work as assigned to them by the nation. They are missed.
I'd like to recognize Mrs. Fish. While she never put on a uniform, she washed a hell of a lot of them. When I got the deployment orders, she got the kids and the bills and the stress. She put up with the long hours, and the promotion study sessions, and me going to college full-time while working grave shift on the flight line. I got the stripes and the awards, she got to hear about what a stellar NCO I was. On the day I retired, she got a bouquet of roses and a poem from a grateful nation, but without her I wouldn't be that NCO. Mahal kita.