|James wrote:"Me and the boys at work on maneuvers."|
Today is Armistice Day from World War I, and tomorrow is the Veteran's Day holiday here in USA, where we honor people who have served in the Military.
I won't go in to the politics today, but I will say that the fact that there are any veterans lacking access to services, jobs or even homes should be of concern to all of us. I volunteer with a group that helps people experiencing homelessness find work, and many of the our clients are veterans.
James Coburn was a veteran. He was drafted into the Army and spent a almost 2 years in the Service Battery in Germany after WWII. He mostly enjoyed his time in the service, as you may guess from the above picture, and took advantage of the GI Bill to study acting - and we know how well that turned out!
However, Jim was not the first of his family to serve. His uncle Darrell Coburn, the eldest of the four siblings that included Jim's father, had served in World War I. He had been inducted into the army in September of 1918, part of the last big push to wrap the thing up (the Hundred Days Offensive). In the last months the Allies were putting 100,000 men into the field every day.
Darrell was 19 at the time. He was sent to the front lines, and was fortunate to return home when it was all over. But he lived the rest of his life as an invalid, and I suspect that he had been gassed. Darrell rejoined the family business, managing the Coburn Ford car dealership in the next town over - but he and his wife never did have any children.
Very best wishes to all veterans.
Lest We Forget.