LearnA little reminder from my Great Grandfather


writes on June 6, 2011

Oscar Sears' World War I draft card

I was researching my family tree and I found my great-grandfather’s World War I draft card. He was drafted when he was 33 years old, which is how old I am.

If it was 1918 instead of 2011, I would’ve been kissing my wife and kids goodbye, grabbing a rifle, and suiting up to go in the trenches towards almost certain death. Instead, I’m tapping on my MacBook Pro, sipping a latte and opining about the web.



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18 Responses to “A little reminder from my Great Grandfather”

  1. Interesting! Your Grandfather’s Grandfather was doing something completely different – signing the treaty of 1818 between US and UK, most likely sipping moonshine in Oregon 🙂 I wonder what was your grandfather wrote in his blog (i.e. analog diary) about him 🙂

  2. yup, puts it into perspective for you… everybody whining and complaining about little insignificant crap… as the hashtag on twitter goes… #FirstWorldProblems.
    Respect to your great-grandfather and those like him. Tallyho

  3. I have both my great grandfather’s enlistment card and his discharge – he fought in Cuba during the Spanish American War. http://www.geni.com/people/Robert-Quiggle/6000000010798949623

    There are still plenty of soliders packing up and kissing their families good bye and going off to war in 2011. So much has changed and so much has stayed the same.

  4. Ben Barber on June 6, 2011 at 6:58 pm said:

    In what ways has this changed your perspective? Have your personal or professional goals changed? Which feeling is stronger: the pull to have beliefs and ambitions worth dying for, or the resolve to never again take time with your family for granted?

  5. Awesome reminder. My grandfather was the “baby” of his family, but still wanted to enlist. He did so and served his tour in Italy, and thankfully came back. People back then were of a different stripe, for sure. Thank God for ’em.

  6. Keven on June 6, 2011 at 2:56 pm said:

    Though it looks like he joined up in the middle of September 1918, so he probably hadn’t even left the US before it all ended a few weeks later.

  7. Paul Saunders on June 6, 2011 at 2:49 pm said:

    sobering indeed… even more so considering (being a British subject) I’d have been called up 4 years ago and likely to have died along with every one of my mates on the Somme two years back. Its really chilling when you wander around some of the small towns and villages of Britain and see memorials to the dead from the Great War. Even the tiniest villages have a roll of honour sometimes dozens long. Back then the lads from a town, a village or a factory would have signed up and fought in the same unit together and when they were wiped out the whole community back home was dessimated.
    That’s a great find Ryan – please treasure it

  8. Simon on June 6, 2011 at 2:24 pm said:

    How lucky we are !

  9. “The world has moved on since then.” – Stephen King, The Dark Tower

  10. Mammakerri on June 6, 2011 at 12:55 pm said:

    Wow.  Talk about some perspective.  We definitely live in a different world, don’t we now then he did then?  I am so grateful and thankful for all they he did to serve before us so we can be doing what we do now.  Love you, Ry.

  11. Anonymous on June 6, 2011 at 12:10 pm said:

    On a similar note – http://m.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jun/06/spotify-problem-getting-people-to-pay?cat=commentisfree&type=article

  12. Anonymous on June 6, 2011 at 12:03 pm said:

    So very true.

    It’s so easy to forget just how easy many of us have it.

  13. Anonymous on June 6, 2011 at 11:57 am said:

    Really makes you put things in perspective; and also question what our loved ones who have passed make of the world that is now unfolding. Could the web exist in the next life?

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