March 4th, Monday – Dade Battlefield WW II Commemorative Weekend

This past weekend was a whirlwind of activity.  We put in two 9 hour days each.  Barbara got the worse of it since she by her own choice wanted kitchen duty.  Yours truly was assigned to the field crew meaning whatever needed to be done was ours to do.  We carted trash, made sure the bathrooms were stocked and clean, we saw to it that traffic flowed, and the best duty of all – we provided escort duty for the attending WW II Veterans.  Here we go, the weekend in review.

WW II Weekend Introduction Poster

It began with the reenactors from both sides – American and German–  assembling on the parade field before the raising of the American flag.

Flag Raising Troops Mustered on Square

Then came the raising of the American flag.

Flag Raising 3

A little later in the morning the troops passed in review.

Troops Passing in Review 1

Jeeps of the day with a young admirer hitching a ride.

Troops Passing in Review Jeep 1

Then there was this, a Humber Light Reconnaissance Car- or is it?  More on this later.

Troops Passing in Review Humber

There were encampments around the grounds, this of a typical American camp.

American Encampment Overall View

A closer look at a typical American tent.

American Encampment Typicall Tent

Check out the inside – look closely to the right of the typewriter.  This guy was prepared

American Encampment Typicall Tent Inside

Even more firepower.

American Encampment Typicall Tent Inside Bed

Moving to the German side, their field hospital.

German Field Hospital

Their mess tent.

German Mess Tent

Now, remember that Humber?  The Humber Light Reconnaissance Car, also known as Humberette or Ironside, was a British armoured car produced during the Second World War.

Humber Light Alfred the Great

This, though, is actually a Jeep Cherokee!  The vehicle is a reproduction body made of plywood!  Authentic in every way.

Humber Light Inside

The very best part of the day for me was yet to come.  The opportunity to meet those who truly made this country great.  Not some politician speaking out of both sides of their mouth and twisting the truth to suite their needs.

I’m talking about real men of courage, conviction and integrity.  There was Ted who served from 1943 to 1969.   He fought in WW II, Korea, and Vietnam.

There was Fred who served in Korea.

Then there was George.

George WW II Vet 94 young

George WW II Vet 94 young 1

Today, George is 94 years young (that’s his wife to the right in the picture).  He was a US Army bomber pilot who flew 30 missions over Germany.   Think about that for a moment.  Many never made it past 1 or 2.  The stories he told and the memories he shared about the missions he flew kept us all gathered around him.  He stated there was never any question of not flying a mission.  If you were told to go, you went.  That was it.  Because of him and so many others like him we today are still the land of the free.  In my mind George is a true hero.

Come 4 pm and the park was quite for Saturday.  But the day was not over.  At 7 pm there was a an old fashioned USO show for all the volunteers and reenactors.

73de1-img_0879

We had a packed house for the night’s entertainment.

USO full house

There was the Pascal High School Jazz Band – what a fantastic group!  They played a selection of songs from the Big Band Era.  They were absolutely great!

Jazz Band

The USO radio announcer.

USO Show Announcer

And of course. . . . . .give me your money or its your life

USO Jack Benny

who’s on first, what is on second, and I don’t know on third

USO Abbot and Cos 1

There was a young woman singing songs from Nat King Cole.

USO Singer

And plenty of opportunity to dance if you so desired.

USO Show Dancing

USO Congo Line 2

There you go.  The weekend was an absolute blast.  Would I do it again?  In a minute!

Thanks again for joining us on The Road of Retirement.  We were dead tired when the weekend came to a close but we were also extremely thankful to have been a part of all that went on.

These are the voyages of  Graybeard and it’s occupants, four paws and two humans.  Our continuing mission: to explore as many new states as possible, to seek out new acquaintances and make new friends, to boldly go where we have not been before

See you on down the road

 

One thought on “March 4th, Monday – Dade Battlefield WW II Commemorative Weekend

  1. Looked like an awesome weekend. Tiring but rewarding. Meeting true heroes makes us realize what these men sacrificed for our freedom. Thanks for sharing this wonderful weekend.

    Like

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