On Veterans Day, I’ll be thinking of my father, First Sgt. Ray Roberts (1920-2004), who enlisted in the Army at the start of WWII, served in the infantry in the European Theater and was wounded twice, earning the Purple Heart. He is pictured above, top.
I am named for his respected friend and company commander, Capt. Philip Ingraham, pictured above, bottom. He was killed in action July 4, 1944. As communications sergeant, my dad had worked at Capt. Ingraham’s side.
In his WWII memoir, which he wrote for his grandchildren, my dad wrote of Capt. Ingraham, “I had seen many guys killed, but when he went down, it really hit me very hard. He was so close that Phil was named after Capt. Ingraham.”
To his dying day, my dad never again celebrated the Fourth of July.
Copyright 2011 by Phil Roberts, Creative Enterprises.