Thursday, November 11, 2010

Defending Freedom

I was fortunate to serve twenty-two years in the United States Armed Forces and while prepared to do so, was never called on to serve in combat. So while proud of my service and the many valuable experiences I had and training I received, on Veterans Day my attention typically turns to my many ancestors and family members who did answer the call during times of war.

John Britten - my 4th great grandfather who served in the Revolutionary War first with New Jersey in 1779 with the Virginia 4th Regiment and again in 1782 with the New Jersey 2nd Regiment.

Abraham Britten - oldest son of John and my 3rd great granduncle who served in the War of 1812.

Jacob A. Britten - great-great grandfather who served in the American Civil War with the 1st Michigan Infantry; wounded in the arm at Gaines Mill, Virginia where he was captured by Confederate forces and confined at Richmond, Virginia; he was paroled a month later and discharged that next winter for disability resulting from his wound.

Joel P. Hudson - great grandfather who served in the American Civil War with the 13th Michigan Infantry and was wounded in the face at Chicamauga Creek, Georgia September 1863; continued to serve beyond the end of the war and was promoted to corporal.

Howard Hudson - grandfather who served in World War I as a member of the United States Marine Corp with rank of corporal.

Glen Hudson - great granduncle who served in the United States Army as a member of Troop C, 7th Cavalry, during the Mexican Expedition Campaign of 1916-17.

Gale H. Britten - father and disabled American veteran who served in the United States Navy during World War II.

Joel L. Hudson - uncle who served as a "frogman" on an underwater demolitions team, forerunner of today's Navy Seals, during World War II and continued to serve until his retirement during the Vietnam War.

Gordon Britten - uncle who served in submarine duty during World War II.

I have two nephews currently serving (Jeremy Britten - US Air Force and Mitchell Britten - US Marine Corps and Afghanistan War veteran) and also two younger brothers (Thomas and Steven Britten) who wore the United States Army uniform during the height of the Cold War.  I'm proud of each of them as well as my many cousins who have served their country in preserving freedom.