My grandfather died today. I hadn’t seen him since May of 2004 and I feel a little guilty. It’s not that I couldn’t go and see him or that the drive was all that long. In fact, now that I think about the short 3 hour drive, compared to the fact that I can no longer drive anywhere and talk to him, it makes me sad.
Grandpa was a Marine in WWII and received a Purple Heart after being shot on March 6, 1945 on the island of Iwo Jima. As a child I was fascinated with this fact and always liked hearing him tell the story. If I remember correctly there was something about his dog-tag deflecting the bullet that helped save his life, along with a man named Norman McMahan. There is a touching article here about Norman saving Cornie.
I always loved grandpa and his sense of humor and how he loved to aggravate grandma. I also loved how he would go to Dairy Queen and bring us home a quart of ice cream. I wish I could tell you more about grandpa, but I did not get to know him as much as I could have.
Thank you Cornie Verwers for your service as a Marine in World War II and for being my grandpa!