Shifty Powers Memorial


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CTGunner
July 14, 2009, 07:24 PM
Received this today in an e-mail. I thought it worth sharing.

We're hearing a lot today about big splashy memorial services.
I want a nationwide memorial service for Darrell "Shifty" Powers.

Shifty volunteered for the airborne in WWII and served with Easy Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 101st Airborne Infantry. If you've seen Band of Brothers on HBO or the History Channel, you know Shifty. His character appears in all 10 episodes, and Shifty himself is interviewed in several of them.

I met Shifty in the Philadelphia airport several years ago. I didn't know who he was at the time. I just saw an elderly gentleman having trouble reading his ticket. I offered to help, assured him that he was at the right gate, and noticed the "Screaming Eagle", the symbol of the 101st Airborne, on his hat.

Making conversation, I asked him if he'd been in the 101st Airborne or if his son was serving. He said quietly that he had been in the 101st. I thanked him for his service, then asked him when he served, and how many jumps he made.

Quietly and humbly, he said "Well, I guess I signed up in 1941 or so, and was in until sometime in 1945 . . . " at which point my heart skipped.

At that point, again, very humbly, he said "I made the 5 training jumps at Toccoa, and then jumped into Normandy . . . . do you know where Normandy is?" At this point my heart stopped.

I told him yes, I know exactly where Normandy was, and I know what D-Day was. At that point he said "I also made a second jump into Holland, into Arnhem." I was standing with a genuine war hero . . . . and then I realized that it was June, just after the anniversary of D-Day.

I asked Shifty if he was on his way back from France, and he said "Yes. And it's real sad because these days so few of the guys are left, and those that are, lots of them can't make the trip." My heart was in my throat and I didn't know what to say.

I helped Shifty get onto the plane and then realized he was back in Coach, while I was in First Class. I sent the flight attendant back to get him and said that I wanted to switch seats. When Shifty came forward, I got up out of the seat and told him I wanted him to have it, that I'd take his in coach.

He said "No, son, you enjoy that seat. Just knowing that there are still some who remember what we did and still care is enough to make an old man very happy." His eyes were filling up as he said it. And mine are brimming up now as I write this.

Shifty died on June 17 after fighting cancer.

There was no parade.

No big event in Staples Center.

No wall to wall back to back 24x7 news coverage.

No weeping fans on television.

And that's not right.

Let's give Shifty his own Memorial Service, online, in our own quiet way. Please forward this email to everyone you know. Especially to the veterans.

Rest in peace, Shifty.

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tjj
July 14, 2009, 07:41 PM
Thanks CT

A hearty airborne salute to one of America's finest.

2RCO
July 14, 2009, 08:11 PM
CT-- These guys were heroes and we lose many more each day. Stories like that of Shifty should be a lesson to us all. As a society we focus on the sickening cult of Celebrity and our society seems to worship many people that I would kick off my property if they showed up. The people that really matter seem to fade out of our minds while we get 24 hour coverage after so-called celebrities pass.

Here's to Shifty and all the guys like him that fought for our country so shlubs like us can enjoy our freedom and live in a world that's better than it would have been otherwise.

Every time I see a POW, Purple Heart, or one a very rare occasion Medal of Honor Tag on a car I give them a big thumbs up and if it's in a parking lot I thank them.

Raleigh

hso
July 14, 2009, 08:15 PM
Guys, this is about the second piece on Shifty Powers that we've had posted. Please remember that if you think something is of interest (especially if you've gotten it in an email) check to see whether or not someone has already posted it.

SharpsDressedMan
July 14, 2009, 10:48 PM
If I remember it right, Shifty was the guy they called up to take out a sniper from around a corner in France , recreated in "Band of Brothers" (I have no doubt that they stuck very close to the truth on these events, as the original soldiers were advisors to the movie). An impressive shot, and the depiction in the movie reflects the skill that Shifty obviously had, and the respect his peers had for him. Truly, in the company of heroes. My dad served from 1942 in the Phillipines,through the occupation of Japan. They didn't get the coverage that the D-Day and European theater guys got, but I am just now finding out what an ordeal the Pacific was, thanks to the History Channel. You are right, though. I'm afraid the Michael Jackson thing really pales in comparison to even ONE of the unsung heroes of our fighting men. May God forgive them all for the things they had to do, and keep them as his own.

flipajig
July 14, 2009, 11:09 PM
This is the first ive heard of this so im going to pay my respect for all the vets
Those living and passed so from one vet to the others THANKS....

MikkOwl
July 14, 2009, 11:27 PM
There's a photo of him in his heyday and some biography worth reading. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darrell_Powers

Clifford
July 14, 2009, 11:30 PM
Sad.

Trebor
July 14, 2009, 11:32 PM
Reading through "Band of Brothers" several soldiers commented that Shifty Powers was considered to be one of the best, if not the best, shots in the outfit.

One trooper, I can't recall who, said something like, "You didn't want to be Shifty's enemy if he had a rifle in his hands".

Larry Ashcraft
July 15, 2009, 01:16 AM
One trooper, I can't recall who, said something like, "You didn't want to be Shifty's enemy if he had a rifle in his hands".
Now there is a legacy worth pursuing.

Salute, Shifty. Me and my family thank you for your service.

Sorry we have taken what you fought for and turned it into a little bastion of socialism.

Sorry, man, it wasn't me.

Those bastards...

BikerRN
July 15, 2009, 04:04 AM
R.I.P. Mr. Powers.

Thank you sir for what you, my father, uncles and mom's cousin did. They are all gone now. The world is bettered by there having been here, but lessened by their passing.

BikerRN

Shung
July 15, 2009, 06:43 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XYEIPf7aX98

Salute to a Hero, that we had known over here in the BoB saga !

BobOfTheFuture
July 15, 2009, 09:11 AM
"Don't miss, Shifty"


Rest in peace.
Another Hero passes...

Kind of Blued
July 16, 2009, 07:33 AM
These great men are passing away at an astonishing pace recently, but that's how it goes. I'm grateful for the BoB piece, and I hope he passed away knowing how grateful a huge number of us were for his life and devotion.

We might not have wars like that anymore, but "they" still make soldiers like Shifty. Make sure you thank the next one you see.

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