April 1, 2001
Today, Lt. Kelso Horne and Louie are
once again side-by-side. Kelso Horne, 88, died November 25,2000. On March
31,2001, Kelso's widow, Doris, Kelso II, and Kelso III, along with other
family members flew to Normandy, France with the First Kelso Horne's
ashes, to carry out his wishes, "... ashes to be scattered over the 'drop
zone' the 508th made into Normandy."
I understood fully when I reread Fred
Gladstone's letter of March 6,2001 "on 4 July 1944, our Company had 56 men
left of the 130 that jumped on D-Day. But at the end of July 4 there were
only 15 left on the line. Our freedom had been paid with a great price."
Yes, I fully understood Kelso's wish
- his ashes to be scattered where many of his men had spilled their blood.
Men [who] have never been forgotten by their buddies. They were proud of
what they were doing for Freedom! France honored these men by the highest
award possible to be given to an allied soldier. "The French Fourragere
In one letter Louie wrote, "Please
don't worry about me. Now that I've been in battle - have gone through it,
I'll be okay." I now understand why he thought that, as he was one of the
only 15 troopers left.
April 7, 2001
The eight members of Kelso' family
returned to the US a few days later. I had a very emotional phone
conversation with Doris Kelso. She told me that during the services her
thoughts were that I, too, should have been with them, as where Kelso had
been, so had Louis been (Kelso always called him the more formal name of
"Louis" not "Louie" as the others had).
The memorial service was an hour long
High Mass held in the thousand-year old church of St. Mere Eglise (an area
where there had been very heavy fighting). There were ceremonies held at
various locations involving the American flag and homage to Kelso in both
French and English given by Mr. Jutras, also the Mayor of St. Mere Eglise,
as well as by the priest.