I Have Choices

With D day memorials just around the corner in June and the world situation as such — this story gives us things to ponder.

My son said something years ago that made me think.  I especially remembered his words as we stood peering over the grave markers of thousands of troops buried in Normandy, France.  His statement was this…

”My generation is very lucky because we have choices.  There is no draft, no government requiring us to serve in the military or required ROTC training in our schools. We have choices to make. They are our choices… not someone else’s.”


Yes, he was right.  On June 6th, 1944, I am sure these young people would rather have been riding their motorcycles, eating pizza or kissing their girls.  But instead, the door opened on their water landing vehicles and they stepped out into… their futures. They were what would be infamously called “D Day”warriors.

As we know from wars in the past, especially WW2, the draft was huge. Hopefully the training was adequate because all I know is what my husband John said about Basic training for Vietnam.  He thought his assigned bed was not even cold from the previous GI who had left for war.  The turnover was that fast.  Wow!

Now, many years later with the only sound in my ears… a whispering wind, I gazed over a huge plain of white.  Yet, I felt spirits, I felt life and I saw dreams.  They came as energy from this holy place… like a promise.  I believe the destiny of all these people, almost a whole generation, is the fact that our country is still free — that Europe is for the most part still free.  They kept this promise and we must always remember their sacrifice.

FROM SEA TO SHINING SEA… that is America the beautiful.


About the Author

Maryann Hartzell-Curran, a retired educator and counselor, has written a personal account of her journey through the first year of grieving the loss of her husband in her book, “From We to Me,” to help support those who have suffered the loss of a loved one.
Maryann founded a successful family therapy practice and taught in the public and private sectors. She also founded and directed a church-based preschool in Lombard, Ill., and gained experience working with the elderly as director of a senior dining center. She has a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in counseling from Illinois Benedictine University.

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