• Visiting Vets

    Date: 2010.07.04 | Category: Family, Life, Life List | Tags:

    One of the things on my Life List has been to interview my great, great uncle Mix about his experiences in World War II and as a fireman in subsequent years.

    I put it off for a number of reasons. I was worried he wouldn’t want to talk about it, gathering the right equipment, setting up times, traveling…

    But Mix is on dialysis now and I began to worry that I would lose the opportunity. So, last time he was in town, I asked him if he would be willing. He smiled and said, “Oh sister! Have I got some stories for you!”

    I ran the idea by my grandmother, and she was thrilled. She immediately began gathering old photos and even called and suggested I include Mix’s brother-in-law, Pat, who was a Lt. Col. and served in WWII and the Korean War.

    I started getting very excited and researched and prepared. I found some great information at the Veterans History Project and set the date for July 3. Is there a better weekend to learn more about those who served our country?

    So I ventured over to Ruston yesterday and sat down with Mix for an hour and a half and then Pat for another hour or two. I was all prepared with my questions, but I quickly tossed them. Mix and Pat both smiled and just started talking about their experiences.

    They traveled a lot, both domestically and internationally. And while neither saw combat, both were on the cusp of entering it when the bombs dropped in Japan. Mix was actually on a boat off the coast of Okinawa, and Pat, who was a bomber pilot, had orders to fly and move in through England.

    They told stories of women and booze, and lost men and disappointment.

    I plan on writing this whole experience up for a local magazine, so once I get that article together, I will share it here. I am also putting together a mini documentary. It’s really for family, but I will share it here as well.

    It was an amazing experience talking to both of them, and it really opened my eyes to who these men were so many years ago.

    So happy Independence Day! Please remember those who faithfully serve our country.

    Thank you Benjamine “Pat” Kincannon.



    Thank you Thomas “Mix” Howell.