Both of my Grandfathers served in World War 2. One was in the Air Corps and another was in the Army. If for no other reason, I know this to be fact because my Army grandfather, Buford, would respond when my grandmother started nagging him with, “Oh Hell Oease, I got 5 battle stars but can’t do what I want to do in my own house. Ok Oease, Ok.” I love it and Oease was Grandma’s name by the way. Now, I know that Buford was at day two of D-Day and I know my Air Corps Grandfather was somewhere flying supply routes over the Atlantic. But here is the part that makes me cry as a Marine war Veteran myself. I don’t know much else. I don’t know whether I was too young or too naïve to appreciate the stories they had to tell, but I stand here now wishing I knew more. However, they are both dead and whatever I might know from firsthand account is lost forever and that saddens me to a degree I cannot express.
Writing is Easy
Now, I have had some moderate success with this blog, but you must know I am only 8 months in to this entire project. You see, writing for the public is complicated. I can’t express how bad I can be at grammar at times as I edit while one of my 3 children are climbing over me or in the waning hours of the night. Yet, sometimes, I just let it go and realize I am writing to other humans and hope they will appreciate the thought behind the words over the technicality.
Consequently, for those who say, I can’t write, or I don’t know what to say, let me ask you simply, what would you say to your grandkids long after you are dead? Do you think your grandkids would critique your grammar or ask you why you failed to address one issue over another? No, your kids, your grandkids, and your great grandkids when they reached an age to fully appreciate it, would cherish every word whether it is misspelled or not.
I cannot tell you what I would give to have letters or writings from my grandfather to pour over and read. I would love it, cherish it, and I would likely cry over it. I am a grown man now and I could empathize with the 20 something year old man sent to a war zone. And if he wrote home about the French or German girl he fell in love with, well, I wouldn’t even tell Grandma. You don’t need to run a blog brothers, but you do need to write. Put it in a shoe box if you want, but write and tell your stories.
You see, Veterans have stories. They are not always the stuff that movies are made of, but stories all the same. I could tell you about the time in Iraq I got sick and hitchhiked back to my unit from Al Nasiriyah to Al Kut. I could tell you about the time I got shot at by my own Marines. I could tell you about the time that I desperately longed for the taste of a chicken nugget only to have a chicken nugget dinner appear my last day in country, but you might not care. Yet, to the very few who would read it, it would be a story the rest of creation would never know. And it would be my story.
You all have them. Korea, Vietnam, Panama, Gulf War, Iraq, and Afghanistan, there are stories that the world will never know unless you tell them. Honestly, that is one of the things that excites me most about running this blog. In the end, when it hits the internet, It’s online forever, right? So my children, my grandchildren will forever be able to read the stories of my war. They will be able to see who I was at a given point in history and what I thought of life, faith, politics, and yes, even War. My grandchildren might know a totally different Granddad, but they will be able to look back on these blogs and know who he was in 2015, and I absolutely love that.
Go Pro Brothers
So, let’s jump to blog stuff. Yes, if you want to write and put it in a shoe box you should. My goodness you should. Again, you have stories to tell that the world will never know.
Now, I literally started this blog after googling, “how to start a blog”. It led me to WordPress and to Bluehost as a hosting option. I am going to include a link to Bluehost here as I recommend anyone who is seriously thinking about starting a blog to check them out. I started this blog thinking 50 people a week reading it would be a great week. Yet, thankfully I chose Bluehost and thus when over 24,000 people viewed my blog in one day, it didn’t crash, I didn’t lose my data, and for an affordable price, it worked. They will charge you upfront, but once you pay that upfront price, you will find yourself all in and strangely committed to telling your story. Check out what Bluehost has to offer here: Bluehost Web Hosting
This is just my personal testimony. Also use WordPress because everyone uses WordPress. So when you are an idiot and you don’t know what to do like me, just google the question and I guarantee you someone has already asked it. After I set up my blog, I literally had to message Bluehost and ask how to get to my blog. I was clueless.
Full disclosure, if you click my links to Bluehost and purchase, I’ll make a few bucks and maybe pay for gas this week. Other than that, don’t start a blog to get rich. Do it because you love it. Do it because you have a story to tell and your children or grandchildren might actually like it. In fact, if you have a domain name in mind, you can actually check it below to see if it is already taken. If you want GruntsKillBadGuys.com well, type in below and find it.
But just write brothers, please just write even if you put it in a shoe box under the bed. I would trash this entire blog to have the letters from my Grandfathers or the firsthand accounts of their lives. Write and put it in a shoe box or write and put it in a blog. If you start a blog, hit me up and email me. I’ll do what I can to help you out. However hear this and hear it loud. Every Veteran has a story to tell. So tell it to the world and even if only your grandchildren read it, their tears will be all the payment you need. Write on Vets, write on. No one knows your war better than you. And your family will be interested in you more than anyone else.
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