Friday, July 04, 2008

A Tale of Two WWII Vets

This Sunday will be our very special Patriotic Celebration here at Grace Church. This is a Sunday in which we will be honoring America and recognizing the many heroes among us. This will include anyone who is a veteran or active member of any of our Armed Forces as well as families of any American Service man or woman who is currently serving overseas. We will also recognize past and present members of our local police, fire and emergency medical personnel.

A special tribute will be given to all WWII Vets. Do you realize that 16 million Americans answered the call to arms in WWII? Of these, 400,000 made the ultimate sacrifice. There are only approximately 3 million remaining alive today and WWII Veterans are dying at a rate of 1,200 to 1,500 daily. The minimum age of a WWII Veteran is now 79. On this Sunday we desire to give special recognition to any WWII Veterans in attendance. If you are a WWII vet or know of a WWII vet who will be in attendance, please be sure to contact the church office (626-2155) and let us know in advance.

I will be sharing the stories of two WWII Veterans that morning as I use the Bible that my Grandpa Distler had with him on the USS Greely at the time of the announcement of the Allied victory. The attached picture is of my Grandpa, Grandma and my dad back in 1945, It was taken in New York City after my Grandpa returned from the war. That is his writing on the picture as he labels my Grandma as "my love" and my dad as "my boy." Please remember that on this Sunday only, July 6, we will change our service times. We will have two identical celebrations, each lasting one hour in length. The first will be from 9:30-10:30 and the second from 11:00-Noon. Following each service the celebration will move outside for a free lunch with an army camp set up including mess tent and military vehicles. There will also be games for all ages including dunk tanks and bouncies. Everything is free and will happen rain or shine here at Grace Church, 501 W Lincoln Ave in Lititz. For more information, visit our website at

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