Sharing Their Stories

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Reno resident Joe O'Brien was a combat medic who served in World War II as part of the 165th infantry in Japan.
Almost half of his regiment died in Okinawa.

He says they don't have the chance to share, and that is why he's here.
"We all have distinct stories. None of them are particularly nice. But, people have to understand, that's the price we pay."

Korean Veteran, Jim Brown, agrees.
"The younger generation needs to know what's going on and we have to school them because they're going to take over this country. We aren't going to be here very long. They're our future generation to run this country, that's why they need to know."

The students at O'Brien Middle School, in Stead, had a living history lesson at school.
But, our World War two veterans are getting older and dying off and even at this assembly... the lack of veterans was obvious and noted by principal Scott Grange.

"If we have 1300 students thinking just once about why we're not in school. And for all these empty chairs here, that when I started this years ago were filled with veterans that can't come anymore... think about that."

O'Brien says these students are thinking.
"It's necessary for them to understand what's going on... and the idea of respect is very important and I think we instill all that when we come out."

Grange is the grandchild of two World War two veterans who aren't alive anymore to share their stories.
But, the words of his grandfather still ring true for him, and he shared those words with his students.

"I want to tell you, so that you don't forget. So, that when you tell your kids, they don't forget."