Monday, May 29, 2017



It was a cold January day in 1953. Class was let out for lunch at Our Lady Of Lourdes School in Brooklyn New York, as two friends named Joe went to their respective homes for lunch. We talked as two little grade school children would, and split off.

Joseph Crispino was a gifted storyteller and a good kid. He was also very proud that his Dad was in the army, away in some gosh awful land called Korea. He told of the souvenirs his dad had left him from the army, where he had been stationed, and hoping to see his dad soon.

Mom knew Joseph, she used to call him “A storyteller”, but he always won your heart with his gift. He was an ordinary looking kid, a bit round, no movie star looks, but a lot of appeals. We could play for hours, in an abandoned lot on Somers Street around the corner from my Grandmother’s house on Fulton Street.

When I had finished lunch, it was getting late, and Joseph was supposed to call on me then we would continue onto school for the afternoon session. I waited, and Mom finally told me to go call on him. Off I went down Hull Street, crossed Rockaway Avenue to the other side of Hull Street.

I reached Joseph’s apartment and climbed his stoop, entered his vestibule and rang his doorbell from the bank of mailboxes. His floor was the second one, and the door swung open.

“Joe, are you coming to school? It’s getting late!

I could hear sobbing, a great deal from within Joseph’s apartment. Joseph stepped out, standing on the landing, looking down at me, tears streaming down his face, dressed in a long army coat, too big for him.

“I can’t,” he sobbed. “My Dad was killed in combat.” Was all he said, as he turned and went back into his apartment, quietly closing the door behind himself. It was the last time I ever saw Joseph.

His Dad had made the ultimate sacrifice. In the line of duty for his country, your country, and mine. His blood lies deep within the Korean soil, fighting for the freedom of South Korea, a Korea where they now dislike us until they are invaded again. His blood deposited in the defense of his buddies, as they all fought for survival in those bitter cold winters of -20 degrees Fahrenheit. His blood is a barrier for all of us here in the US, as he gave it to safeguard our freedoms and help defeat communism.

Because Joey grew up without his Dad, never sharing a ballgame or an ice cream soda, a laugh or even a good meal, we are now free to blame everything on this country that goes wrong in the world. We are free to criticize the brave men and women who are giving their lives and time on this earth, away from their families, to protect us from terrorism.

We are now free to coddle the enemy, make sure we give them all their rights, and even facilitate their ability to destroy us in our office buildings, and create more Joseph Crispino’s.

I for one am ashamed that this occurs. I love this country, and will always love those that sacrifice daily, and those that led the way in the ultimate sacrifice.

God bless America. God bless Joseph Crispino.


Post a Comment

<< Home