Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:15 pm

Dear Butch,

I know you remember that day well, 44 summers ago standing in the rice patty with my father as you heard the thud of a bullet hitting a body. Nanoseconds later you heard the rifle report and for a split second you and my father knew one of you had been hit, but was not sure which one. Unfortunately it was you.

You never returned to the United States again, even though you made it through boot camp, became best friends with my Dad and did two tours of duty in Vietnam. To die three days before your return home hardly seems fair.

The Survivor Guilt is deep within my dad, even now, but he picked himself up by his boot laces and did well these past 44 years. He has used his medic training to save two lives, doing tracheotomy’s on the side of the road to save car accident victims. He also opened his home to hundreds of foster children, had three children of his own and adopted six more. He’s done some good despite the memories of Vietnam.

The sad thing is, I will never know your real name. Dad never talks about Vietnam and it is too painful to ask what your real name is. Butch is all I will ever know.

I have touched your name once though, on the wall in Washington, DC. I was too small to remember the name, but small enough so that I could be put on my Uncles shoulders and rub your name with chalk onto a piece of paper as Dad cried…really cried. I had never seen my Dad cry before, but of all the names…one name…your name…touched him the most.

Despite 44 years of silence, one thing needs to be said. Not from my Dad, but from me Butch. Thanks for taking that bullet for my Dad.

(Written by me, NoSmoke, the son of a combat disabled Vietnam Veteran).
NoSmoke
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: New Yoker WC90
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vogelzang Pot Bellied Stove
Coal Size/Type: Stove/Nut/Pea Anthracite
Other Heating: Munchkin LP Boiler (Back-up)

Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: NoSmoke On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:16 pm

By the way: We are not a family with out sacrifice to our freedom. We are proud of the four family members that gave the most sacrifice; their lives, for this great country...

Timothy Johnson, Jr: Killed in Action-French and Indian War 1746
Joesph Warren: Killed in Action-American Revolution (Bunker Hill) 1775
Frank Flannery: Killed in Action, American Civil War 1865
Frank Washburn: Missing in Action, World War Two 1943 (B-27 over Germany)

We are especially proud of my brother, Brian...who as I type this is flying back from his first deployment to Afghanistan as a Sniper for the US Army. We are thankful to God for his safe return in his service to this country...
NoSmoke
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: New Yoker WC90
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vogelzang Pot Bellied Stove
Coal Size/Type: Stove/Nut/Pea Anthracite
Other Heating: Munchkin LP Boiler (Back-up)

Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: SMITTY On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:22 pm

GREAT post No Smoke. Many thanks to your family, and to all veterans out there who have lived that story from the very beginning of our country, right up to this minute. God bless you guys!
SMITTY
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Patriot Coal - custom built by Jim Dorsey
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Mark III (not currently in use)
Coal Size/Type: Rice / Blaschak anthracite
Other Heating: Oil fired Burnham boiler


Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: samhill On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:24 pm

Very touching & well written Smoke, there are many Friends that we tend to forget names (maybe to protect ourselves) Your Day did well, your right to be proud of your ancestors, good bless them one & all.
samhill
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: keystoker 160
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 75 in garage
Stove/Furnace Make: keystoker/hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: koker 160/ hitzer 75

Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: KLook On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:37 pm

Superbly written. Very proud heritage.

Just heard of another old WW II vet I grew up around passing today. Another real quality guy all his life, came back with a wooden leg and you'd never know it. Worked on the lobster boats and in the woods in the winter. Kept wearing out the wooden legs.

Kevin
KLook
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF 3000
Coal Size/Type: rice, bagged, Blaschak
Stove/Furnace Make: Harman (Back In Maine)
Stove/Furnace Model: VF 3000

Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: freetown fred On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:02 pm

Nice NS, a lot of outstanding people have given thier all for this great Country of ours. Having been a Navy Hospital Corpsman FMT attached to 3rd Marines and doing 2 tours in the Nam,46 yrs ago myself. My regards to your Dad.
freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

Re: Dear Butch...but to all veterans really...

PostBy: buffalo bob On: Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:20 pm

nicest, kindest post of the day no smoke it took me back some 45 plus years....THANK YOU for sharing with us...
buffalo bob
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 354
Coal Size/Type: anthracite nut