D-Day - RIP John Blacker

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by TGS91, Jun 7, 2010.

  1. TGS91

    TGS91 New Member

    May 8, 2009
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    Been thinking lately after the passing of my wifes grandfather a couple weeks back.

    John Blacker among other activities in WWII was part of the Guadalcanal assault and was involved in some of the fiercest fighting. To his dying day he could not bring himself to share some of the horrors he witnessed.

    John served his country and came back to central illinois and raised a family of which my wife was his grandaughter. He also welcomed me with open arms into his family.

    The anniversary of D-Day passed yesterday with hardly a blip. I saw a story about how they are trying to save the french coastline and some of the Nazi fortifications that the allied troops stormed.

    I see movies such as 'Saving Private Ryan' and speculate on the courage these men exhibited stepping up to the plate

    If it wasn't for the brave men that assaulted the beaches of Normandy much less the actions of John Blacker and his comrades in the Pacific this world would be a much different place I suspect.

    RIP John Blacker, you done good
     
  2. Johngo

    Johngo New Member
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    Thank you for sharing that. My 98 year old grandfather died a year and a half ago and they were definitely a breed apart.

    My thoughts and prayers go out to you and yours.
     
  3. bee1000

    bee1000 New Member

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    They reran a classic Peanuts cartoon with Snoopy standing tall with the soldiers yesterday.

    The D-Day invasion was an amazing accomplishment. A few years ago National Geographic had a piece about the preparations and logistics required, from every soldier and sailor memorizing the coastline--and each other's duties--in case they didn't end up where they were planned to, to the flotilla of supply ships set up a mile offshore to keep the invasion running. It was extraordinary.

    I'd definitely recommend Band of Brothers over Saving Private Ryan for those looking for a dramatic interpretation of WWII. It deals with the Airborne, so you can watch the beginning of SPR to get an idea of the beach, but from there on BoB is great. I haven't seen Clint Eastwood's Flags of Our Fathers movies yet, but the one focusing on the Japanese is in my Netflix queue.

    The Ken Burns documentary The War is really long, so I've only seen parts of it. The main thing I came away with was that the victory went to the Allies because the Americans and the Soviets had the most young men to throw into battle.

    This chart on Wikipedia estimates the military deaths of all countries at 22,000,000 - 25,000,000, and civilian deaths at another 38,000,000 - 55,000,000 including Holocaust victims. Amazingly, 24,000,000 of all those deaths were from the Soviet Union.

    Stalin said one death is a tragedy, but a million deaths is a statistic. We need to remember that there is an individual story to go with every one of those represented in the numbers.
     
  4. TGS91

    TGS91 New Member

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    Both are brilliant. The second "Letters from Iwo Jima" is the first WWII movie that humanized the Japanese that I know of. Most all knew they were going to die, pretty tough pill to swallow
     
  5. Jason Montague

    Jason Montague New Member
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    Recounting Combat Experiences To Noncombatants

    :frown2: As a four time combat veteran and the 5th generation of 6 unbroken generations of combat veterans, I can tell you the reason why I don't talk about' It' unless it's a very mature person doing the asking or it is another combat veteran 'checking my story'(there are soooo many liers,story enhancers ,and wanna be/never weres out there. FINALLY people are being prosecuted for it,thank God). I once told of my experience, in assisting 2 snipers in Panama, to a group of people not knowing that one of them was an attorney.The 'Experience' was during 'Operation Just Cause' 1989-90 and I ,as the Medical Officer, got to spot(spotting scope) for them thereby 'showering with the big boys' as it were. I told the story of us purposely only wounding an enemy sniper thereby luring 2 other enemy soldiers out to rescue him. Then we took out all 3 enemy soldiers and were not fired upon again from that quarter. Well, the atty turns livid and tells me that I'm a Cold, Calculating, Unconscionable,Sociopath:eek6:(he had never been in combat).
    People who haven't been there often(but not always) don't understand. They also oft times don't understand the morbid gallows humor.We laughed for a long time recounting that episode to our buddies later that day, but people who weren't there, see No Humor and walk away. They don't understand that we all risked our lives(Americans and Panamanians) trying to 'take each other out'(we never 'killed' anyone.We took them out). The remaining Panamanians learned a valuable lesson about survival in combat, never trying that again and perhaps a good way of 'taking out' American snipers.:devil::lol: Well, better stop here and climb down off of the soap box.:Thumbsup: Jason
     
  6. Justa Jim

    Justa Jim Well-Known Member
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    Jason tends to ramble on a bit, but he is correct in saying that you can not undersand combat unless you have lived it and there is no reason why you should. I watched part of those Eastwood movies about the Japs and had to walk away. It is another world and your thought process completly changes, which is why coming home, even though you what to, is very hard.

    Jim
     
  7. Jason Montague

    Jason Montague New Member
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    jbewley

    :Thumbsup:Thankyou. Boy you sure are correct about the 'Rambling'. Sorry about that. I guess from your response though,I did get some sort of understanding across. Thankyou for telling me that. It helps,a lot.:Thumbsup:

    :cornut: Jason :cornut:
     
  8. TGS91

    TGS91 New Member

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    Jason and JBewley

    I did "get" that it was a horrific experience that my grandfather had and that was the touching part to me.

    Thank you both for your service to our country
     
  9. Jason Montague

    Jason Montague New Member
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    :cornut:Sir, I was not speaking of you. By the way you talk I can tell that you loved and honored him.I can tell that you definately 'get it.':Thumbsup:

    Jason
     
  10. PGT

    PGT Wheel Whore

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    Amen, but, don't forget what happened on the 5th of June. Everybody does. My grandfather won a Bronze Star for that action. :Thumbsup:
     

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