Grandpa said "No, but I served in the company of Heroes."

"From this day, to the ending of the world, we in it shall be remembered. We lucky few, we band of brothers. For he who today sheds his blood with me shall be my brother."

Finished it... finally. And yet, as I type those words, I realize how much I miss it. During, you just want it to end... the sadness, the destruction, the death, the fear - you just want it to end. But as the last episode rolls around, you realize how much of yourself is now with them - with Easy Company. I know a part of me is lost knowing that I will never get the chance to meet some of these men...

And I'm pushed to realize that I didn't get to meet my Grandfather, which is enough to make you wish you'd never educated yourself about the war. I realize that a lot of them never spoke about the war... they didn't know what to say, I guess. Didn't know how to explain what they had seen or been through - but to have been able to shake his hand would have been enough.

When I watched it the first time, Band of Brothers really tore open a part of me I didn't know existed. A part of me that was simply fascinated with World War II... a part of me that respected anyone who got in those planes on D day.

Band of Brothers spoke to me in a way Saving Private Ryan couldn't... because with Band of Brothers, you couldn't tell yourself it wasn't happening. You couldn't tell yourself everyone may miraculously be alive, that everyone will come out okay, because that just wasn't always the case. With fiction, you can do what you want... but with Truth, you have to tell it how it is... no matter how strange or heart breaking (lucky for me, I latched onto Lipton... phew).

But despite all of this, it's safe to say that the truth is also inspiring. I can proudly say I've never respected a group of men more... and it's also opened my eyes and showed me what soldiers go through... it's made me appreciate them all a whole lot more.

However - Easy Company will always be there, leading the charge. They'll always have a special place in my heart, because they were honest to God heroes, each and every one. They answered the call of duty, and they marched onward, despite outstanding odds. They risked our lives and were forever changed so that we could sleep at night.

I was talking to Courtney a while back, and I told her that, if I had the chance to meet one person... if I could just pick one person to meet, I'd pick Maj. Winters. But, as I think about it, I don't know what I'd say. I'm sure I'd want to thank him for everything he's done, but how do you thank a man for being a hero? I'm not even sure I'd be able to shake his hand, simply because I don't think I'd be worthy of it... you know?

You know something - and someone - has really touched you when you can pick them out of a crowd, no problem. When I was watching the interviews with the surviving members of E Company, I was absolutely blown away with how many people I knew the names of - how many of them I just recognized right off the bat... how many of them I knew were still alive as of present, and how many had passed away and when.

It's interesting how something like this can change your life... how a simple comment like, "ooo, that looks good," 8 years ago would help kindle an interest... how an innocent night, waiting for the premiere of HBO's new miniseries could completely change who I was and how I looked at things.... and it's amazing how, after 8 years, and multiple viewings, the only thing that HASN'T changed is the fact that I'll always be touched. ALWAYS... I'll always be touched by these brave men, always respect them, always remember them.

"That night, I thanked God for seeing me through that day of days and prayed I would make it through D plus 1. I also promised that if some way I could get home again, I would find a nice peaceful town, and spend the rest of my life in peace." ~ Maj. Winters

I'm gonna let you in on a little secret. Since watching this show in 2000, since hearing this quote and being thoroughly and completely affected by this man, and these men, I have said a prayer every Memorial Day and Veteran's Day. I have prayed for Maj. Winters, prayed that he remains on his peaceful spot of land, and is still able to live on in peace. And I will continue to pray that prayer, and I hope you all join me.

On January 21, 2009, Maj. Winters will turn 91. He is still alive, and I can only hope he remains on his farm, able to live in peace until his days are done... and I pray that when that day comes, he will recieve the most calming peace there is, and be able to go home.

I pray that for all the remainding members of Easy, and pray that those that are already gone made the necessary decisions to do the same.

I pray that each and every one of you may find something that will speak to you, and change your life, like this did mine.

"I treasure my remark to my Grandson who asked, 'Grandpa, were you a hero in the war?' 'No,' I answered, 'but I served in the company of Heroes.'" ~Maj. Winters


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