Tuesday, June 26, 2018

World-Renowned Soldiers Who Earned The Purple Heart

The Purple Heart is the oldest award given to United States military personnel. The first was given in 1917. It is an award that symbolizes exemplary sacrifice in the line of duty, and as such is awarded to people who were either wounded or killed in combat.

Image source: Time.com

Let’s take a look at some of the most famous recipients of the Purple Heart.

Charles Bronson: Charles Bronson was not only a bona fide Hollywood tough man for the ages, but he was also a recipient of the Purple Heart. Bronson, who had gone on to star in hits such as “The Magnificent Seven” and the “Death Wish” franchise, started out as part of the Army Air Corps before he became a tail gunner for a B-29 in World War II.

Kurt Vonnegut: Esteemed author Kurt Vonnegut was a prisoner of war in World War II. It was this experience that inspired him to come up with the story of “Slaughterhouse Five.” The book would go on to be his most popular piece of work. He was awarded the Purple Heart from being a frostbite victim.

Rod Serling: Sci-fi fans know the name of Rod Serling only too well. The creator of “The Twilight Zone,” Serling used memories from his experience in the Philippines fighting against the Japanese to come up with stories for his famous series. His group had one of the highest casualty rates in the war, thus earning him the Purple Heart.

Image source: Pinterest.com

My name is John Eilermann, and I am passionate about studying World War II. Go to this Facebook page for similar updates.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

World Cup Dreams: Getting Children Involved

When you look at kids playing sports, you’ll see that many of them are part of soccer teams. Yes. Terms like soccer dads and soccer moms were coined from the great number of children playing the game. And why shouldn’t they play? It’s practically only the greatest sports in the world.

Image Source: isport.com

All the football stars in the upcoming World Cup used to be children who dreamed of becoming great at football. Players like Messi, Ozil, and Ronaldo all played soccer since they were small, and followed through with their dreams.

Now while only a small percentage of kids playing will get the call to suit up for the grandest stage in all of sports, the rest will still have a number of huge benefits to reap for when they grow up. Not only is soccer one of the best ways for kids to stay in shape and make their bodies stronger, but it is also a game that teaches so many important values such as hard work and discipline. Soccer teaches children to stay the course and persevere no matter what. It also imparts to them the importance of fair play and winning and losing graciously. But probably most important of all, children experience being a part of a team.

It’s one of the best exercises in the world. Running around chasing after each other and the ball makes for healthier heart and lungs. Children’s leg muscles are also fortified, much more than kids who don’t play sports.

It teaches kids the meaning of teamwork. If this is the first team sport a child will join, odds are the only team they’ll ever know is their family. Soccer teaches kids the value of working with their peers. This benefit will serve them later in life as well.

It’s fun. There’s nothing boring about soccer. Children will constantly be on the move. And with their boundless energy, this is a great direction for them.

It’s cross-cultural. More than other games, soccer forges new and strong friendships. This extends far beyond local games. FIFA has more than 200 national member associations and high-profile events allow children to interact with, and see other children of different nationalities and cultures. This helps children become more broad-minded and accepting as adults.

Image Source: activeforlife.com

It is especially important that this is done during the developmental stage of the child (around 5 to 13 years old). This period, psychologists say, is what forges the adult personality.

Hi! I’m John Eilermann. I want to share what I know about football, especially with the World Cup just around the corner. Learn more about me and the stuff I love here.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Take The Time To Talk To a War Veteran

Let’s take a break from talking about the events of World War II for a minute, and focus on the people who were there and fought for the freedom of the world. These veterans who have defended the flag and the country they serve deserve everyone’s respect, and they deserve to have their stories told.

Image source: burzynskilaw.com

Many of them come back different people than the ones who were deployed. Many of them were changed by the war and the times. Many of them find that upon return, everything is different. 

Take time to talk to war veterans, and not just from World War II, but from all the other wars. You’ll see how much all of them have in common. You’ll see that they need certain things that they might not have, such as decent healthcare and therapy. These two things are the bare necessities that soldiers deserve for putting their lives on the line. 

Talking to war veterans, you’ll understand how hard it is for them to be living in the now, with minimal pay. Affected by constant inflation, you’ll realize that they need financial help and that many of them are too proud to ask for it. 

You’ll also come to understand after talking to a veteran that they also deserve their own piece of land and a place to call home, after all, they put their lives on the line and fought tooth and nail for that and all the pieces of land in the country. 

Hey guys, John Eilermann here. I’m fascinated about the many aspects of World War II and I want to share them with you. More of the stuff I love can be found here.

Monday, March 12, 2018

One Snappy Salute To War Veterans Everywhere

Image source: usdefensewatch.com 
It feels like on so many levels, we, as a society, have failed our war veterans. Sure, there are days when we remember them, like Memorial Day and Independence Day, but for the rest of the year, we go about our daily lives not giving a second thought to what they’ve done and what we’re able to do because of them.

Today’s generation just seems ambivalent to so many things, including war veterans. Countless of those who’ve served in tours over the decades are now living in hardship with scars, both physically and mentally, sustained from the horrifying experiences of the war. Combine that with the fact that many of these veterans have served in more than a single tour, and you’ll know that they deserve way more respect than what society gives them.

Image source: rt.com
So many of these men and women who’ve fought for our country could’ve just stayed at home with their families and take up regular jobs. But no. They chose to spend their days in places with imminent danger, patrolling areas with hostile forces around, just so every American, not just their own families, can live in peace.

There are ways to show our appreciation for what war veterans have done, and they won’t even take a lot of time and effort. Spare some time to talk to them, and maybe you’ll learn a thing or two about history.

Hi! I'm John Eilermann. I love reading about World War II since I was young. Follow me on Twitter to learn more about me and the things I’m passionate about.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Why You Should Read 'The Chronicles Of Narnia'

Along with Tolkien’s "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit," C.S. Lewis’ "Chronicles of Narnia" has profoundly influenced how people regard fantasy and children’s literature in the modern age.  It is the author’s best-known work, and its rippling effect on literature and aspects of Christian faith cannot be underestimated.

First published between 1950 and 1956, the books have been adapted many times (complete or in part) for radio, television, the stage, and film.  Starting off with "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe," this series explores a magical world filled with wondrous mythical beasts who can speak.  We follow a group of children who find themselves transported to the land of Narnia, called upon by Aslan the lion to help save the magical realm.  

Image source: wordpress.com

Lewis manages to incorporate in "Narnia" themes of religion and myth that were previously absent from children’s literature (certainly not prominent in Tolkien’s work).  There are distinct traditional Christian allusions here, as well as ideas from Greek, Roman, and Irish mythology.  

Interestingly, C.S. Lewis was a former atheist, and writing this series of books was his way of embracing Christianity.  What’s good for both young and old readers is that there is no heavy-handed and self-righteous approach in the books’ depiction of morality.  We get immersed in a world where the children are empowered and make decisions not because of blind faith nor impositions.  

Image source: movieweb.com

The impact of "Narnia" on the genre can be easily seen in more recent fantasy books and films, including Rowling’s "Harry Potter" series.  

The name’s John Eilermann, comparative literature student from St. Louis, Missouri. The program I’m in follows a multidisciplinary approach that allows students to have minor courses in disciplines such as philosophy, politics and culture, history, arts, and science. More on my hobbies and interests here.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Four Historical Wwii Sites In Europe

World War II is a fascinating subject. And for those glued to WWII documentaries in Netflix or the History channel and have read countless of articles and books about the Allied tactics on the European fronts, a visit to the most prominent sites should be your next step in your historical education.

1. Jewish Historical Museum

Located in Amsterdam, Netherlands, this museum was established in 1932 and shows the culture, history, and religion of the Jewish community during the war.

Image source: chamelledesigns.com

2. The Reichstag

Reichstag in Berlin, Germany was set on fire by the Nazis to allow them to pass appalling laws in order to get rid of communists, among other things. The building was mainly used to put forward propaganda projects.

3. American Cemetery - Colleville-sur-Mer – France

10,000 crosses have been put up in this cemetery to honor the American soldiers who came to fight with the French. The American Cemetery of Colleville-sur-Mer was gifted to the US – a small piece of land in the heart of Normandy.

Image source : theatlantic.com

4. Omaha Beach, France

The famous beach has seen some of the bloodiest skirmishes of the war. It was named by American soldiers to talk about the beaches they would land on to help free the European from the Nazi regime.

Hi there, John Eilermann here. I’m deeply interested in WWII memorabilia since my father joined the US army at the start of the war. Follow me on Twitter for more updates.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Ten Facts About the Bombing of Pearl Harbor

The attack, which drew the U.S into World War II, was executed in the early morning of Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese bombed the U.S naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Japanese thought it would neutralize the American forces, allowing Japan to dominate the Asia Pacific.

Image source : britannica.com
Here are 10 interesting facts to know about the Pearl Harbor bombing.

1.The attack commenced at 7:55 AM.
2.The attack lasted 110 minutes.
3.The Japanese attacked the base in two waves, approximately 45 minutes apart.
4.The Japanese attacked the U.S. without warning.
5.When the Japanese Commander Mitsuo Fuchida called out, “Tora! Tora! Tora!” (“Tiger! Tiger! Tiger!”) upon flying over Pearl Harbor, it was a message saying the Japanese caught the Americans entirely by surprise.
6.The Japanese had to travel 3,400 miles across the Pacific to execute their attack on Pearl Harbor.
7.The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor with a total of 353 planes.
8.The Japanese specifically chose to attack on a Sunday because they believed the Americans would be more relaxed, and thus less alert, on a weekend. Many U.S. service personnel were still in their pajamas or eating breakfast when the attack commenced.
9. There were eight battleships at Pearl Harbor that day, which was the whole US Naval fleet, except for one, the Colorado.
10.All eight battleships either sunk or were damaged. Amazingly, all but two (The Arizona and the Oklahoma) were able to return to active duty.

Image source: historyonthenet.com
My name is John Eilermann. I’m a sports enthusiast from Chicago and a big supporter of the baseball team St. Louis Cardinals. I am also a history buff. Visit my blog for more WWII reads.