A Veterans Day Toast

This Veterans Day I offer a toast to my Uncle Richard. He was a very young soldier in 1943 when he was called upon to invade Sicily and fight the Nazis there.

On average everyone in his unit was killed three times, so 300% casualties. It’s not clear how he survived, although he has a great debt to an older sergeant who looked after him. A lot of things in life have been more difficult than they should have been since then.

Since that time he has maintained a continuous, loyal, and upright middle finger at any kind of authority, without exception. He’s a photographer and painter and retired from teaching. I believe he was something of a thorn in the side of university administrators during his career.

Uncle Dick, I’m sorry for the unholy amount of suffering you had to endure, and I salute you for being a model of rebellion and creative success. Bottoms up!

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