Monday, May 25, 2020

May 25, 2020

MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey

Observations on a Special Memorial Day – A New Essay Published by CHRONICLES Magazine


As today is Memorial Day and also seventy-five years since the end of World War II, I’ve written a very personal essay which has been published by CHRONICLES Magazine.

The few surviving veterans of that awful conflict are quickly passing from the scene. So I dedicate this essay to them, and in particular, to my father, PFC Harry S. Cathey, 101st Cavalry, European Theater, who passed away in 1999. I hope you find it meaningful….

Observing a Special Memorial Day

By Boyd D. Cathey   May 25, 2020
My father, Harry S. Cathey, was a World War II veteran. He left behind letters to my mother written from France and Germany in 1944 and 1945. Some of the words and designations are obviously in a code they had between them—he could not identify locations in the combat zone. What comes through above all are two things: his sense of duty to his country and his abiding love for my mother—no real complaints about his conditions, although he does express the wish that he can taste her cooking again and, of course, the hope to see her soon.
A member of the 101st Cavalry, my father was assigned to a Stuart light tank and was involved in reconnaissance operations. On March 15, 1945, near Kaiserslautern in the Rheinland-Pfalz, his tank was hit directly by a German projectile. Dad, then piloting the tank, was seriously wounded, and his best buddy Dale Lackey, the gunner, was killed.
Shortly before the attack, my father and Dale had traded positions: for several days previously, my father had been the gunner and Dale the pilot. They often switched positions—and they had done so only hours before the fatal incident. That trade had saved my father’s life, almost miraculously, just as it had taken Dale’s. This fact has always affected me deeply and impelled me to count my blessings....



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                                                         April 30, 2021   MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey   The Survival of Western Culture...