Monday, May 11, 2015

Remembering V-E Day

May 8th marked the 70th anniversary of V-E Day (Victory in Europe).  To commemorate this important event the air space over the National Mall was opened and a plethora of World War II planes flew over the city in formation and in order of their appearance during the war.  I really had no choice but to take the boys out of school so we could enjoy the festivities.
The airplanes were amazing and even included the only operating B-29 Superfortress in the world.  This is the same type of plane that dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
 Atley adopted a grandma at the event.  She was very impressed with his knowledge of airplanes. She asked him questions all afternoon and he was in heaven. As the P-51 Mustangs were flying over, Nash said, "It's pretty cool to be an American isn't it mom?"  Yeah, it's way cool buddy.
The following day we went to the Air and Space Museum at Dulles where the same planes involved in the flyover were scheduled to land at the museum.  Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate but there were lots of other activities for the kiddos. They learned so much about life during the war.
They learned all about planting Victory gardens and even planted some seeds of their own.
Harley learned all about Rosie the Riveter. They designed and launched their own aircraft and even made paratroopers that they dropped into a war zone.
They played in restored WWII military jeeps, used the sometimes primitive instruments that were the only things available to the soldiers at the time and also learned how to spell their name in Morse Code.
The most special part of our V-E Day experience was visiting with the WWII veterans.  Nash has always had a tender place in his heart for the elderly.  I feel like it is a spiritual gift for him. At one point in our day I discovered Nash with a man named Ernie Krause.  People were gathered in front of him and Ernie was explaining his role in the war.  He was born in 1921. He and his brother both enlisted in the Navy. However, his brother was shot down somewhere over Europe and never made it home. He told some incredible stories and people asked him questions and shook his hand. He was amazing to listen to and as sharp as a knife. During his story Nash quietly slipped behind him and the rest of the crowd.  I noticed Nash silently standing behind this hero with his chubby, grubby, little boy hand resting gently on the old gentleman's shoulder listening intently.  I was so touched by the image that I failed to snap a picture.  I later had him return to Ernie for a quick picture.  It was such a sweet moment and something I will always cherish.
Of course, we spent the rest of the weekend recreating the Battle of the Bulge on our dining room table and streaming war documentaries on Netflix.

1 comment:

G&G said...

Awesome experience for the kids, you are such a good mom.......