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Sunday, November 11, 2018

This Veteran's Day - Remember the Cost of War

Thank You to my father, Harry Simms, my father-in-law, Kenny Vaughn, and my Uncle Bill Lee, for your brave service in WWII. Thank you to my brother, Mike, for your service during the Vietnam War. And to all the military servicemen and women who have crossed my path in life, and who have served proudly, I cherish your service for our freedoms and our country. To all those who continue to serve our country -- Thank You!!



Image #1 is of my Dad, Harry Simms. He served in the Army. His friend and comrad had his head blown off right next to my father in the Battle of the Bulge. Every time my father got a fever, he would have vivid nightmares about that day and would scream "Juba! Juba!" That was his army buddy's name. My father suffered greatly from PTSD.



Image #2 is of my Uncle Bill, great-great grandson of General Robert E. Lee. My uncle Bill was a fighter pilot during WWII.



Image #3 is of an award honoring my maternal grandfather, Mason VanFossen, for his service in WWI. He served in the Army during WWI.



Image #4 is of my brother, Mike Simms, who served in the Air Force during the Vietnam War.



Image #5 is of the Japanese Bayonet Rifle that my father-in-law Kenny Vaughn retrieved from a Japanese soldier he killed in the battle of Iwo Jima. Kenny served in the Navy during WWII.



Image #6 is the same Japanese rifle's bayonet inside the German Helmet that my father, Harry Simms, brought home from the Battle of the Bulge. The helmet was from a German soldier my father killed. Sadly, the soldier's blood stains are still inside this Nazi Army helmet.



Image #7 is the blood stained interior of the WWII Nazi German Helmet retrieved from the German Soldier my father killed in WWII at the Battle of the Bulge.



Image #8 are the mementos from my Father-in-law, Kenny Vaughn's, service in WWII.

I am very proud of my family history, maternal and paternal, as every generation served in every war since the Revolutionary War, with the exception of the Iraq War. With that pride comes great sacrifice, personal and moral, but we must remember that these wars were fought for our continued freedom, our country, our countrymen, every military serviceman and woman who served before and after. Young men and women have died the world over for their country. The Japanese Rifle and German Helmet are humble reminders of the cost of war.

Share your family history with me as we recognize, proudly, the men and women who have made our freedom possible!!!


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