World War II veteran recalls battlefield experiences in address to Rotary luncheon

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (DC News Now) — Jack Myers was honored Wednesday by the Hagerstown Rotary Club for his decorated service during the Second World War. At 100 years old, he earned a Bronze Star and Medal of Honor for his battlefield bravery.

His wartime memories are vivid still.

“The toughest thing for me was to lose my friends,” said Myers. “To lose my buddies. But you know, it’s war. It’s bound to happen. And it was tough. But the Lord got me through it.”

Recalling the experience touched some people’s emotions in the Rotary luncheon audience.

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“The thought of these youngsters,” remarked Derek Hamilton. “You’re looking at an old man now, but these were 19-year-olds, 20-year-olds. Fighting. Doing the things that they did is absolutely incredible.”

In Williamsport, Jeff Cline’s father served in the Army with Myers – Jeff is Myers’s neighbor to this day.

“We need to get the message out about how that generation fought and gave us the rights and privileges that we have today,” said Cline.

Myers’s memories of the battlefield experience are vivid and can even evoke a doubletake.

“Christmas came along,” recalled Myers. “We got an order to stop firing. So did the Germans. And don’t you know, we sang. They started to play Christmas carols with their band across the river. We listened to that and we sang with ’em!”

Myers hasn’t totally left the experience behind. He has made 15 trips to World War II battle sites in Hawaii and Europe.

Emotional scars lingered, however. Myers says it took him 40 years before he could even talk about his battlefield experiences.

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