REST IN PEACE, SHIFTY

MULEY51

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Don't know if this is the right forum but, I received this in an email this morning and it is so right on..


Shifty volunteered for the airborne in WWII and served with Easy Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 101st Airborne Infantry.
If you've seen Band of Brothers on HBO or the History Channel, you know Shifty. His character appears in all 10 episodes, and Shifty himself is interviewed in several of them.

I met Shifty in the Philadelphia airport several years ago. I didn't know who he was at the time. I just saw an elderly gentleman having trouble reading his ticket.
I offered to help, assured him that he was at the right gate, and noticed the "Screaming Eagle", the symbol of the 101st Airborne, on his hat.

Making conversation, I asked him if he'd been in the 101st Airborne or if his son was serving. He said quietly that he had been in the 101st.
I thanked him for his service, then asked him when he served, and how many jumps he made.

Quietly and humbly, he said ...
"Well, I guess I signed up in 1941 or so, and was in until sometime in 1945 . . . " at which point my heart skipped.

At that point, again, very humbly, he said
"I made the 5 training jumps at Toccoa, and then jumped into Normandy . . . . do you know where Normandy is?"
At this point my heart stopped.

I told him yes, I know exactly where Normandy was, and I know what D-Day was. At that point he said
"I also made a second jump into Holland , into Arnhem ."
I was standing with a genuine war hero . . . . and then I realized that it was June, just after the anniversary of D-Day.

I asked Shifty if he was on his way back from France , and he said
"Yes. And it's real sad because these days so few of the guys are left, and those that are, lots of them can't make the trip."
My heart was in my throat and I didn't know what to say.

I helped Shifty get onto the plane and then realized he was back in Coach, while I was in First Class.
I sent the flight attendant back to get him and said that I wanted to switch seats.
When Shifty came forward, I got up out of the seat and told him I wanted him to have it, that I'd take his in coach.

He said ...
"No, son, you enjoy that seat. Just knowing that there are still some who remember what we did and still care is enough to make an old man very happy."
His eyes were filling up as he said it. And mine are brimming up now as I write this.

Shifty died on June 17 after fighting cancer.

There was no parade.

No big event in Staples Center .

No wall to wall back to back 24x7 news coverage.

No weeping fans on television.

And that's not right.

Let's give Shifty his own Memorial Service, online, in our own quiet way.

Please forward this email to everyone you know. Especially to the veterans.

Rest in peace, Shifty.
 

Common Sense

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I have known a few "Shifty's", and it always amazed me how little they talked of their service. Most of the ones I knew are gone, but there's still a couple; and every now and then I take my grandson to visit them.

Even though he is only 13, my grandson knows Michael Jackson is no hero. But my grandson does know a couple of real heros, and treasures little mementos they have given him.
 

BelchFire

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Thank you for your unselfish service and sacrifice to the cause of freedom, Shifty. You are truly America's Finest.

Just as CS does, I know (and have known) quite a few of the greatest generation. They will always be just that, no matter what the future throws at us. They stood up and gave of themselves en masse in a monumental way that I don't think America could duplicate today. And that's sad. Sad because for the same reasons we couldn't do it again, too many Americans have lost the respect for what was done. And sacrificed. Indeed some may not have ever known.

I was privileged to be able to name both of my sons after members of the greatest generation.

God speed, Shifty. It will be my pleasure to shake your hand when we meet one day.
 

Buckeyeduckhunter

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I just got back from Annapolis and Washington DC. It was an honor for me to once again visit the memorials. They cannot begin to tell the true story of the sacrifice these great patriots gave to protect our country. Muley, it was great what you did. It shows heroes like Shifty, that patriotism is not a fad, and there are those that truly honor and remember those that have given everything.
 

MULEY51

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Thanks Belch, but all I did was to help spread the word.

Thanks for the post. I hadn't seen that interview.

God bless Shifty and all those that allow us the freedoms we still have!
 

RVRKNG

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GOD SPEED, SWIFTY!:patiotic-wavin-flag:patiotic-wavin-flag:patiotic-wavin-flag
 
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