United States Army
World War II Veteran
Mr. George Gonzalez is a very old friend of mine, I have known him since I was a young boy in the Barrio. He returned to Visalia, California in 1945 having served in combat for three years in the U.S. Army.He was drafted at the age of 19 years old. Mr. Gonzalez, aka Georgie Boy, had four other brothers that served in the war; they all returned safe to Visalia, today he is the only surviving member of his family. His older sister passed away last year at the age of 104 years of age. George is 98 and will turn 99 in November, his mind is as sharp as a tack. He is currently residing at a rehabilitation home due to having suffered a broken hip from a fall, he hopes to be back home in a few of weeks.
I try to stop by and visit with George as often as I can and as you can see by his attached photograph he is proud of being a World War Two Veteran and displays his combat ribbons on his cap, along with the DD (double D Infantry Division) the outfit he fought inthroughout his many battles against Japanese forces in the Pacific Theater.
Coming home from war George was employed by the Postal Service and worked delivering the mail in Visalia for 30 years until his retirement. He was also a founding member of American Legion Sierra Post 785. In one of the photos are a group of soldiers taken in New Guinea, George is in the front row on the left. George still gets misty eyed as he speaks about the many friends he left buried in those islands. He said that during that time, he also met two of his friends from Visalia in the Pacific. Sadly, both were killed shortly after arriving in the war zone.
There are still thousands of WWII Veterans living at home with their relatives or in rest homes…. They always enjoy a visit, so in your hectic lives, perhaps take the time to stop by and pay a veteran a visit and let them know they are not forgotten. These veterans are dying at an increasing number every month, this Memorial Day, take a second and think about all our veterans, those that gave some and those that gave all.
Happy Memorial Day to all Veterans and those service men and women that today serve throughout the world.