Eastern Utah
EMAIL ME AT: mgypsy97 at aol dot com

Monday, June 14, 2010

Visit with my cousin

I had a very nice visit with my cousin today. She arrived at about 11:30 and we chatted for a while in my cool apartment, then left in the heat of Sacramento summer to eat at a small bistro in Fair Oaks Village. The food was good but I didn't care for the owner at all. And this is all that I have to say about that! I did enjoy talking to my cousin and catching up.

Today the thermometer hit 93F but we are scheduled for temps in the 80's for the rest of the week. I knew this was coming while I was so cold during the past winter.

I talked to the woman at Sioux Falls AAA this afternoon, and we agreed I would email her my tentative plans in an email. She will look them over during the next few days, and will call me with any questions or suggestions she may have. There will be plenty of time for coordination between now and when I will need the map.

I explained some of what I wanted to do, and when I mentioned the route I want to take through Nevada, she commented that she had never known anyone who wanted to travel on the highways of Nevada. It seems they all want to hug the interstate. Well, the interstate is fine, but I explained that I had traveled US 50 through Nevada several times and she was flabbergasted! I wanted to mention that Bruce and Margie just completed the trip in a huge motorhome, but I will definitely get that into the conversation at a later date.

Now I'm just going to try to forget about the trip for a while, at least until I hear from Heather at AAA again. It's still too far in the future to stay pumped up the entire time, but I'll keep my maps handy for when I need to renew my dream.

I've been doing a lot of genealogy the past couple of weeks, and today I came upon an interesting person. One of my cousins from Pennsylvania served in the airborne in World War II, jumped at Omaha Beach, and then at Bastogne. Surprisingly he survived both. Maybe some of you WWII buffs (or old movie buffs) can answer this for me. Wasn't Bastogne where the paratroopers were either dropped off target or were carried by the wind into the middle of town, getting hung up on church spires and tall buildings? They were sitting ducks for the Germans who occupied the town, and I think we were supposed to land away from the town and then try to take it.

It seems like I remember an old movie in which that battle was portrayed. Anyone remember the movie? Was it Bastogne, or someplace else.

So I was very surprised and proud to know a distant relative had taken part in two important drops into German held territory. One of my brothers was in the Airborne; he served in Vietnam during the early days of the war, but as he had been held over in Okinawa way past his time, they had to let him come home for a visit. Nearly his entire unit at Ben Hoa was wiped out shortly after he left.

And we never learn and we keep doing the same things over and over again.

I just looked at the calendar on my computer and realize it is June 14, Flag Day. I have a small flag on my patio all the time.


  1. The D-Day event you refer to involved the 82nd and 101st Airborne units and happened in the town of Sainte-Mère-Église in Normandy. The actual incident you mentioned is this: "A famous incident involved paratrooper John Steele of the 505th PIR, whose parachute caught on the spire of the town church, and could only observe the fighting going on below. He hung there limply for two hours, pretending to be dead, before the Germans took him prisoner." Others weren't so lucky: "Some buildings in town were on fire that night, and they illuminated the sky, making easy targets of the descending men. Some were sucked into the fire. Many hanging from trees and utility poles were shot before they could cut loose."

    The fight for Bastogne occurred during the Battle of The Bulge in Dec. 1944-Jan. 1945 and the 101st Airborne was again heavily involved in the defense of Bastogne. It was also the place where one of the most famous incidents of WWII occurred whhen General Anthony McAuliffe, acting commander of the 101st, was told of the Nazi demand to surrender, a frustrated McAuliffe responded "Nuts!"

  2. To add to Rick's post, John Steele was from Metropolis Il. and there is a beuatiful mural in the town square near the veterans memorial, that shows the scene of his church landing.Donna & I saw it last summer on a visit to see the home of the real man of steel, Superman.
    Have a safe day. Sam & Donna.