He was only 18 when he enlisted in the Army during WWII. He wanted to make a difference and help his fellow Americans. He had no idea that this experience would be the most life changing event in his life. He met the men with whom he would develop lifetime friendships. The war was long and the stories he would have to tell would define a generation.
Dad never really has told us much about his time in the service. Now he is suffering from memory loss and these stories need to be recorded for not only his children and grandchildren, but for generations to come. These are important events in his life that would help to define him.
Helping Veterans share their stories can be a rewarding experience. To hear about what they saw, heard, who they met, how they survived, and what they learned is crucial.
Here are some questions to begin the conversation.
- Why did you pick the (branch of service)?
- Were you scared? Excited? Determined? Proud?
- Tell me about your first days in the service.
- Did you have a particular job in your unit?
- How did you feel or what thoughts crossed your mind when you were sent to combat?
- Were there casualties in your unit?
- Tell me about your most memorable experiences with your unit during both peace time and war time.
- Did you keep in touch with friends and family back home? How did you keep in touch with them?
- What did you do to pass the time?
- Did you keep a journal?
- What was it like when the war ended?
- What did you do after the war?
- Are you still in touch with some guys from the unit?