Monday, 6 January 2014

As I walked out - ( D-Day (1944) and a surprisingly delightful conversation.)

Regular readers will remember that I have previously referred to an older couple who walk early each morning.  Our paths often cross as they and I walk. They are snow birds.

I used to think that they were somewhat miserable, so I unkindly pegged them as Mr. and Mrs. Pickle Face. Once I got to know them I discovered that their somewhat stern faces mask very warm hearts,

For the longest time I addressed them as Don and Victoria.....  until I was alerted to the fact that their names are Bob and Virginia.

They are lovely and gracious indeed.  Their year round home is in West Virginia (not far from Bethany College WVA.) Bethany College is rooted in the early 19th C  "revivals" under Alexander Campbell.  (Look it up!).

This morning I got into a  longer conversation with Bob  and Virginia. They were surprised and delighted to discover that I know a bit about Alexander Campbell.

Somehow (I know not how) our conversation moved to World War II and the D-Day Allied Invasion of  Europe.

Bob, with great reluctance, told me that he was in the invasion force into Normandy on 6th June 1944 (eleven days after my birth).

Good Lord above: I have been chatting for about five years with  hero of D-Day and the Normandy invasion and did not know it.

 Like many true heroes,  Bob  is reluctant to talk about the horror of D-Day.  HE WAS THERE.

I am grateful for my chance encounters with Bob and Virginia.

Given the chronology of WWII,  Bob and Virginia are surely in their late Eighties or early Nineties.

They walk at least three miles every morning!


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