WWII Museum visit triggers family emotions

Recently, our junior class at Mount Carmel Academy had the opportunity to visit the National World War II Museum.  With the help of our grandfather, Steve McMurray, as a tour guide, we were able to experience the museum from a personal point of view.
Our grandfather fought in the 4th Marine Division in the Pacific, including the Battle of Iwo Jima.

Walking through the museum exhibits, we learned personal stories about how fear controlled all of the soldiers, and we also heard about the pain of seeing fellow soldiers and friends being killed and tortured in front of their friends.

Our grandfather’s actual uniform and the drawings he donated to the museum were on display for us to see.

Our class heard about how our grandfather shipped out on the day before his 18th birthday, even though his parents did not want him to go.

They feared losing another son. My grandfather’s older brother died when he was only 3 years old, leaving our grandfather as the eldest.

While watching the “Beyond All Boundaries” movie at the museum with him, we saw our grandfather break down in tears during the retelling of what he actually experienced.

Although this was an emotional experience, our grandfather told us how he is grateful that he survived and remains with us today.

At 91 years old, my grandfather is still doing 100 rows daily on his rowing machine. He is one of the strongest and most inspirational people we know.

We may not always be able to tell him thank you for his service, but today we can say “thank you for serving our country and helping this country become what it is today.”

We will always be thankful for the opportunity we had spending this field trip with someone who was not only special to us, but also special to the world.

Maria and Madelyn Pinero are juniors at Mount Carmel Academy in New Orleans.

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