My grandfather, Aubrey Bulmer, was a member of the infantry that landed on the coast of Normandy during the D-Day invasion. It was never something that came up in conversation. I knew some veterans didn’t like talking about it. I assumed my grandfather was one of those men.

But I also didn’t want those experiences to be lost. I want my children to remember and to be connected to this history so it wouldn’t be forgotten. So, one day, I brought it up. When I did, the room got quiet. He didn’t say anything. After a moment he just looked out the window and I could see his eyes filling with tears. I didn’t get any words or stories from my grandfather that day, but I’ll never forget the moment.

He passed away a few years ago. Aub gave me something more precious than war stories. For a brief moment, he showed me what it cost him.

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