Dick had no idea of his parents’ address. At the diner, he saw an old buddy, who told him where his parents were living. With this useful new information, Dick made his way home. He showed up at his parents’ house at 5:00 A.M. and knocked. His half-asleep mother scurried to the door and saw her son for the first time in four years. She cried. He cried.
Dick’s parents then informed him of something he was yearning to know: All of his brothers had survived the war. Yes, all five. He was the last one they were waiting to hear from.
“Pretty lucky,” Dick says.
Unfortunately, all of Dick’s brothers now lived elsewhere, two of them newlyweds. His two sisters had also gotten married. In 1942, he had left a happy home of nine people. The war had emptied the Bailey household.
But now, all Bailey boys were “home” regardless; they were alive.
The war had been “quite an experience,” Dick says today. Asked if he would do it over again, he smiles and says, “as long as I came back alive.”
Dick and all his brothers did just that.
How can we honor them today? We can honor them by not destroying the America they were willing to sacrifice everything for.
Photo credit: Pedro Szekely (Flickr)
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