We sat enjoying our picnic on the beach, soaking in the French sunshine and watching our little boy play in the sand. Nicholas turned to me and said, “You know, it’s probably because of your ancestors fighting right here that those schoolchildren are free. And speaking French today.”
“Wow,” I said, the implications sinking in more deeply.
It was the earlyish 2000s and we were at Omaha Beach, enjoying the outdoors after exploring the museum with its slightly dusty artifacts and big fighting machines. I find these outing to military museums important but draining, not only for all the information to be read and digested, but for the bigger issues of loss of life, fighting, and just plain old evil. But sitting on the beach, thinking about my Uncle Donny who fought in WW2, I simply gave thanks.
Thank you, veterans, for risking or giving your lives that we might be free.