It all started with my father…I was a daddy’s girl…
By PFC Leon C. Gay
45th Infantry Division, U.S. Army
Published in the 45th Division newspaper
You say he can’t stand the army
that the life is too rough for him
Do you think he is any better
than some other Tom or Jim?
You raised him up like a girl
he didn’t smoke, he didn’t drink so you brag
If all the rest of our boys were like him
what would become of our flag?
You say let the rough class do the fighting
they are used to beans and stew
I’m glad I’m classed with the roughnecks
who fight for the red, white and blue.
You say his girlfriend couldn’t stand it
to see him off with the rest
Don’t you think she’d be glad he enlisted
when she feels the Jap’s hot breath.
You think of the women of Belgium
of the cruelties they had to bear
Do you want the same thing to happen
to our innocent daughters so fair?
You can thank God that the stars in Old Glory
are not blurred by that kind of strain
because here’s to a million and more roughnecks
who have real red blood in their veins.
They go out and drill in bad weather
they come in with a smile on their face
while your darling sits in the parlor
and lets another man fight in his place.
Well, maybe we do fight and gamble
but we will fight as our forefathers did
So warm the milk for his bottle
Thank God we don’t need your kid!
There was a war going on. People were being killed. People were being maimed, rumors of people being exterminated. People were being controlled. People hurt. People thought about things like freedom. It was still far away…but who knew what was going to happen next? Maybe it would be here next…and it would be OUR fields being blown up, OUR children going through that misery, OUR wives being raped. So my father decided to to the only thing he knew to do. There was an army for for him to join. There was a gun to hold in his hand. He went out to meet his enemy face to face….He was killed in the Huertgen Forest in Germany on October 10, 1944.
A white cross marked his first grave in…Belgium…
I see misery, suffering, control of
people’s minds and emotions, human
beings turned into robots, and it’s
NOT far away. It’s already at home.
My mother, me, my sister; my
children may be next. But
there is no army for me to join.
There is no basic training to prepare
me for battle. There is no gun I can
hold in my hand to kill the enemy.
There are no comrades to share the
loneliness, fear and doubt..
I can’t quite decide if my enemy is
or the mental health profession. ….
One has to read that poem and
remember the spirit of the early
40’s..the patriotic spirit. .
It was a different era…a different war.
I don’t agree with what he had to say (He did not smoke or drink!)
…or did…in particular but I have to agree with one thing.
He did what he felt was the right thing for him to do. He tried.
It’s in the same spirit I write my book. I may find out when it’s too late it wasn’t the right thing to do.
But I will know I tried….