The other day, I was talking about my memories of Thanksgiving when I was a kid.
One that I didn’t mention was something I did with my dad for many Thanksgivings – watch The Fighting Sullivans. I used to watch a lot of old movies with my dad and this is one of my favorites. So much so, that I bought the DVD a handful of years ago so that my family could watch it and appreciate this bit of history.
It is a true story about five brothers, Albert, Francis, George, Joseph, and Madison, from Iowa who served together in the United States Navy during World War II. They were all assigned to the USS Juneau – at their request – and all perished when the ship was attacked. Not only is it a piece of history, it is a portrait of family, honor and service that is gut-wrenching, yet heartwarming.
It was this tragedy that resulted in the United States’ change in policy that would no longer allow siblings to serve in the same military unit, or on the same ship.
This is a letter from their mother, Alleta Sullivan, attempting to confirm the deaths of her sons:
This movie was usually on television on Thanksgiving or the days leading up to it, hence my association with the holiday. If you have not seen it, you must.
It is a wonderful story that not only reminds us of the sacrifice made by many who serve our country, but also to be thankful for what we have.
Perfect for Thanksgiving.