boomerang betsy was shot out of the bulgarian sky on the way to the ploesti oil fields in romania. it was 79 years ago today. i’m grateful for the tenacity of my sweet poppo, taken prisoner-of-war and missing-in-action to everyone back home for months. he survived and came back home to – one day – tell the harrowing story and combat the unnamed ptsd that became part of his strong fabric as a man, a husband, a father.
without our knowing it, the veterans administration named my dad #VeteranOfTheDay on july 19, 2019. i stumbled across this a couple days ago and wondered how it was we did not know this. he was – and is – our hero every day, but it was a thrill to see a day devoted to him and his dedicated service, celebrating him, seven years after he moved on from this plane.
today we arrive in iowa. david’s family is gathering to celebrate columbus/aka chuck/aka charles/aka his dad. a time put aside to inurn his ashes in his little hometown in the farmlands. we are in a farmhouse – one with a back porch, a working silo, green grass on which to play bocce ball. the family will come here for dinners, to reminisce, to play and laugh and, likely, weep a bit. i know it will be a time rich with moments.
these dads of ours were like great white trillium. somehow – despite everything – growing easily in the world, faithful, not-too-picky, gently spreading seeds of wisdom.
the chicago botanic garden says, “in the constellation of singular spring flowers, there are a few stars that shine more brightly than the rest. perhaps the fairest of them all is the great white trillium.”
stars that shine more brightly.
great white trillium.
and our dads.
read DAVID’S thoughts this D.R. THURSDAY
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