He was wearing a hat that said WOUNDED COMBAT VETERAN.

I met John today, an 89-year-old man. He was wearing a hat that said WOUNDED COMBAT VETERAN. His wife was in the dementia unit and he visits her every day for two or three hours each day. He sometimes goes back at night to make sure that she has eaten something. He feeds her. He plays music for her.

“Does she know you?”

“No, but sometimes she smiles at me. She is a good gal. And a pretty red-head Irish girl. We met back in the neighborhood when we were 15. This dementia is the worst thing I have ever been through. But being in WW II was hell too. I never let myself get close to too many guys because they could be dead the next day. I was supposed to be on the cruiser that went down with 795 men, the one with the five O’Sulivan brothers but I was shot and in the hospital for four months and then back in the war for eight months. You laid in the mud and the snow with those guys. You didn’t shave or wash much. You were just worried about staying alive. Can you say a prayer for my wife? Her name is Jacqueline.”

Coincidence or Providence that I met this man on Memorial Day weekend?

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