A big thank you to Libbie at The Middlest Sister for sending in a special story, in her own words of someone who served-her father. If you have a photo or a few lines of someone's story you would like to tell who has served for your country, please send it to me at email@example.com.
Dan Carlson is my Dad. He survived living in a home with his wife Cheri and three girls. He has always made sure all his girls were completely taken care of & spoiled a bit too :) Even today I have four kids (5 in a month) and an amazing husband but wouldn't you know my Dad is still trying to take care of us all. I never leave his house without finding a case of diapers, a few boxes of cereal or even a huge package of toilet paper in the back seat of my car (and I am there all the time!) He is a loving Dad & I couldn't be more proud of him.
One thing I am very proud of him for is his service in the U.S. Army. He served from October '63-October '65. After PostalSchool in Indianahe served overseas in Verona, Italy. Here are some of his stories I really enjoyed:
My Dad worked the Army Postal Service in Italy. He worked the counter and guarded the mail as he picked it up from Milan. "All the military mail was handled by Americans. Even payroll. We would go pick up cash for payroll with no guards and no guns. We were driven around by crazy Italian drivers. I was in three accidents while I was there. I delivered a lot of Dear John letters. Almost every solider got one eventually"
"We could not make the trip from Milan to Verona, in the Deuce& amp; a Half, without filling up so we would stop at this one fruit stand to pour the gas in. We would always buy the cherries during cherry season. But every time we got back to the base we would all have diarrhea because the farmers used human manure. The cherries were so good that we didn't even care and bought them every time."
"On one trip the Italian driver was talking to the fruit stand owner and he told him how I was a good solider, that I never fell asleep like all the other American GIs and took my job to guard the mail seriously. He told them what a hard worker I was. The fruit stand owner rounded up his five daughters and lined them up. He told me to pick one." (My Dad was smiling big as he recalled that. I asked him if he picked one but he said no:)
"During a drill one night they told me to run back to the base for something. It was completely dark outside & I ran smack into a barbed wire fence. Thank goodness I had been holding my rifle up, it took most of the shock but I cut my upper lip badly and had to be sewn up by a plastic surgeon. It is the only time in my life I had to grow a mustache because I couldn't shave until it healed. I looked a lot older with it."
"One night soon after I was walking a girl home from the service club and I asked her, 'Where have you been all my life?'
She said, 'Probably not born for half of it.' I was really only 23 but it was my mustache."
"Vietnam was just starting up when I was getting out. We were each required to give up one uniform because they were recruiting heavily for Vietnamand they needed more uniforms for the incoming soldiers."
"Veronawas beautiful. It is the home of Romeo and Juliet's balcony, has sidewalks made of marble, and boasts the 2nd largest coliseum in Europe." He actually just returned this week from visiting Italy, and even Verona where he served, again with my mom.
My Dad had many more memories that I am so thankful to have written down. I wouldn't have thought to write down his stories without Cheyenne's blog here, and now I am going to make a keepsake for our family! Thanks Cheyenne for letting me share my very special Dad with you!!!