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Does your collection ever depress you?


renfield

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I have been reading quite a bit about the first months of the war in the Pacific and it is starting to bother me. The tragic loss of so many fine men and women who were killed at such a young age. I have been trying to read The Dyess Story but knowing he was killed in a crash just a few months later is sad. He was a fighter pilot at Clark Field on Dec. 8 1941 fought during the Philippine champain, survived the Bataan death march, escaped from a Japanese prison camp. He could have been evacuated but wanted to stay with his men. A true American Hero, now forgotten by most Americans.

I know I am not expressing myself very well but, war is such a waste why are we so fascinated by it? As far as I know the uniforms I collect are all from men who survived the war. The flight gear are just examples of the types that were used. The photos I have collected are another story. I have some that I kow the plane and crew were lost. It can be a bit depressing knowing these men died in combat and I might have the only survining pictures of them. I know I am doing the right thing by protecting and preserving them. My collection is a direct link to the heroics and sorrow of war. It is a reminder of the human cost, these are not just "things" but part of a persons life. Many times that person did not make it home to his home and family.

Your thoughts?

Steve

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Always looking for anything related to the 8th AAF and flight gear of W.W.2.

Also any info on Advisory Team 98 the unit my late father served in.

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I hear what you say. Just be thankful you aren't a dedicated PH collector because each one represents a KIA. Your uniforms and flying gear may or may not have belonged to a casualty. However, if you have 20 PHs, you have 20 confirmations of death in service...with names.

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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The horrors of history cannot be changed, but I am thankful we have the opportunity to preserve some artifacts that keep alive the legacy of those who made sacrifices. What would be depressing is if all of those artifacts, photos, etc. disappeared and those individuals were totally forgotten.

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What would be depressing is if all of those artifacts, photos, etc. disappeared and those individuals were totally forgotten.

Yes...

HONORING FAMILY LtCol Wm Russell (1679-1757) VA Mil; Pvt Zachariah McKay (1714-97) Frederick VA Mil; BrigGen Evan Shelby, Jr (1719-94) VA Mil; Pvt Vincent Hobbs (1722-1808) Wythe VA Mil; Pvt Hugh Alexander (1724-77); Lt John R. Litton (1726-1804); Bvt BrigGen/Col Wm W. Russell (1735-93) 5th VA Rgmt; Lt James Scott (1736-1817); Capt John Murray, Sr (1747-1833); Capt John Sehorn, Sr (1748-1831) VA Mil; Pvt Corbin Lane (1750-1816) Franklin/TN Mil; Cpl Jesse D. Reynolds (1750-1836) 5th VA Rgmt; Capt. Solomon C. Litton (1751-1844); 1Lt Christopher Casey (1754-1840) SC Mil; Pvt Mark Adams (1755-1828); Pvt Randolph White (1755-1831) Bailey's Co. VA Rgmt; Capt. John R. Russell (1758-1838); Pvt Joseph T. Cooley (1767-1826) Fort Hempstead Mil; Pvt Thomas Barron (1776-1863) 1812; Capt. John Baumgardner (1787-1853) VA Mil; Pvt Joel Estep (1828-1864) Co B 5th KY Inf CSA & US; Pvt George B. Bell (1833-1910) Co C 47th IL Inf US; Cpl Daniel H. Barron (1838-1910) Co B 19th TN Rgmt Inf CSA; Capt Richard K. Kaufman (1908-1946) 7th PRG/3rd AF CCU; T-5 Vernon L. Bell (1926-95) 1802nd Spec Rgmt; PO2 Murray J. Heichman (1932-2019) HQSB/MCRD; PFC Jess Long (1934-2017) US Army; PFC Donald W. Johnson (1931-) 43rd ID HQ; A1C Keith W. Bell (1931-2011) 314th TCW; A3C Michael S. Bell (1946-) 3346th CMS; A1C Sam W. Lee (1954-2017) 2d BW; AW3 Keith J. Price (1975-) VP-10; 1Lt Matthew Wm Bell (1985-) 82nd Abn/SOC








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The only time I ever become thoughtful about my collection is when I dwell on the sacrifices these people made for our freedom, and then I think about them being forgotten by our countrymen who have no knowledge of them or their sacrifice!!

**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER HAS SADLY PASSED AWAY**

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/301020-robin-ray/

 

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I hear what you say. Just be thankful you aren't a dedicated PH collector because each one represents a KIA. Your uniforms and flying gear may or may not have belonged to a casualty. However, if you have 20 PHs, you have 20 confirmations of death in service...with names.

 

 

sorry Ian, and maybe I'm reading this wrong, but weren't Purple Hearts issued for being wounded in combat? I'm sure being KIA entitled you to one as well, and I'm not a PH collector but I didn't think you needed to be KIA to get one....

 

Rick

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Collector of WWII M-1helmets and WWII Airborne items

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...and to answer Steves question, it doesn't depress me as much as it gives me moments of sombre thoughts of the waste of so many young lives, but knowing we honour their memory and service through our preservation of uniforms, helmets, medals etc makes me glad there are collections like ours and that is indeed a bright part of collecting!

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Collector of WWII M-1helmets and WWII Airborne items

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Here in the United Kingdom many collectors actively collect "Death Plaques". These are like rather large bronze coins which bear the name of the deceased. After WW1, the British government presented them to the next of kin of the fallen. With over 886,000 fatalities that equates to an awful lot of death plaques! Why they don't remain with the families I do not know! However, like an American KIA PH, they are a stark symbol of the human cost of war. Some might find it "depressing"...others not so.

 

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"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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Maybe I have just been "down in the dumps" latley, but I do think Americans are forgetting the debt of honor we owe these men and women and that is what is bothering me. I am glad that serious collectors, young and old, will preserve their memories. Like I said I am not good at expressing myself but its not the items in my collection but the reminder of what all those people in all the wars went through.

Steve

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Always looking for anything related to the 8th AAF and flight gear of W.W.2.

Also any info on Advisory Team 98 the unit my late father served in.

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sorry Ian, and maybe I'm reading this wrong, but weren't Purple Hearts issued for being wounded in combat? I'm sure being KIA entitled you to one as well, and I'm not a PH collector but I didn't think you needed to be KIA to get one....

 

Rick

 

I thought both? Oh well..you can tell I'm not a medals man! :w00t:

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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Only when I think of how much I have spent

Looking for for 37th Division

VietNam and earlier Special Forces &

USS Hemminger DE 746 items

"Political correctness is a doctrine, fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rapidly promoted by mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

See my FB sales page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1928884587130681/pending/

 

 

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"Let me not mourn for the men who have died fighting,

 

But rather let me be glad that such heroes have lived."

 

I feel that my collection is a tribute to the heroism and sacrifice of all those who served, and the best way for me to honor those who passed is by remembering them.

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The horrors of history cannot be changed, but I am thankful we have the opportunity to preserve some artifacts that keep alive the legacy of those who made sacrifices. What would be depressing is if all of those artifacts, photos, etc. disappeared and those individuals were totally forgotten.

Very well put, FS.

Always looking for US and foreign militaria from the Central American wars circa 1970-1990

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My collection depresses my wife only! :lol:

Always looking for 29th & 36th infantry divisions items (uniforms, medals, groupings, papers, maps, books...)

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As a retired Soldier who spent half his life to this point being one, I don't find the artifacts depressing at all. Quite the opposite actually, and I find it heartwarming that there are folks out there who cherish material aspects of a mans history and sacrifice. Those that served before were the reason I did it, their service and sacrifice beckoned to me, and it felt like they were always watching. Letting us know that they understood what we were doing, and offering support while keeping their own collective existence alive. Not very many men who leave everything behind to serve, especially in time of conflict, would want their efforts to be forgotten. Death comes to us all, but to those who step forward to face it in an absolute way will want there to be someone down the road who will remember them, to appreciate what they gave for those next to them, and future generations. Plus, most of it is just plain cool ;)

 

What I do find depressing, is how much "stuff" I do have laying about the casa, and think of all the money spent on it. :lol:

Learn to ride hard, shoot straight, dance well and so live that you can, if necessary, look any man in the eye and tell him to go to Hell! US Cavalry Manual, 1923

 

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I dont collect items from areas or era were I engaged in combat its to much to deal with classified ops are the worst, no uniform no markings because officaly never happened yet the facts are those who were there know what happened if they are alive yet will never speak about it and uncle sam makes sure no one will ever go public because we all signed documents. I have found that the gov takes care of those that have done this service it just takes time now they want to give me 20k raise. I see there is a navy seal that has written a book I am sure he will be remanded to a jail in short order.

 

I enjoy WWII AAF it has been a study of a great generation. I have been to many battle fields even Wake Island I will post a pic of the last large japaness gun.

Interested in military buttons and insignia

 

Always remember our Girls and Boys in Uniform - Past and Present..

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With the overwhelming majority of my collection being related to the veterans in my family (either actual pieces, assembled tributes, NARA documentation, etc.) or items that I just had to have because they were extremely interesting to me, there is nothing I find depressing about it. No one (that I know of) in my family was KIA so from that angle, I (we) have no direct connection to those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom.

 

As a veteran, I think that if I had discovered someone who was KIA, I'd be somewhat immune from the depressing aspects of that reality.

 

I do understand the OP's perspective and I know that we all see things through our life experiences. I find that these sorts of sensitivities are very real and come with the territory of handling anything related to people who serve in wars.

I do not profess to be a militaria expert, but I conduct as much research as I am capable of and then write about my findings.
Check out my blogs, The Veteran's Collection (general militaria) and Chevrons and Diamonds (military baseball)

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I think maybe the reference to PHs and KIAs was meant for the advanced PH collectors that focus on the KIA variety.

 

I have only one KIA uniform that I know of. Got it by accident, researched it over the last year, and although I can tell Singer liked to see movies from the dozen or so in the pockets of his coat, and that he smoked from the tobacco still in the bottom of his shirt pocket, and that I see a lot of Vincent E. Singer in the faces of the high school students I teach, having even that makes me happy. His uniform, to me, means he's remembered, and will be as long as I do a few public displays. Without that, he would merely be a picture in our local county book. I will admit that I felt some pretty sharp pangs of grief when I found his obituary thanks to www.newspaperarchive.com, but I a lot of happiness out of preserving their stories for as much posterity as I can manage.

Looking for the following:

452nd and 447th Bomb Group items

Anything 12th Armored- especially uniforms

155th Assault Helicopter Company, Camp Coryell, or Ban Me Thuot Vietnam items[/center]


WWII US Navy Uniforms from the Battle Off Samar: USS Johnston DD-557, USS Hoel DD-553, USS Samuel B. Roberts DE-413, USS Heermann DD-532, USS Dennis DE-405, USS John C. Butler DE-339, USS Raymond DE-341, USS Fanshaw Bay St. Lo, White Plains, Kalinin Bay, Kitkun Bay and Gambier Bay...


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teufelhunde.ret
My collection depresses my wife only! :lol:

Ditto, I am perfectly content, sometimes the brightest moment of my day!


The bended knee is not a tradition of our Corps. (General A. A. Vandegrift, USMC, 5 May 1946)

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Tell you what...it can have the opposite effect on me! If I ever feel "ticked-off" at all (which is not that often) I retreat to my man-cave. Being surrounded by my collection definitely helps me to chill-out! ;)

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"

 

Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon

 

 

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......never speak about it and uncle sam makes sure no one will ever go public because we all signed documents.

Does that include never even speaking or writing about having signed such documents?!?!

 

The collecting remains fun. Even the connections these uniforms bring to the past I find to be uplifting. To hold in my hands awards, badges and wings that represent the accomplishments of men & women who gave thought to only what they were doing in that moment and not necessarily how momentous their involvement is truly inspirational.

It is only proper to feel strong emotion for the hundreds of thousands who were lost to military conflict in the past decades but it is far better to acknowledge those deeds by continuing to collect, if that is your passion and gathering items that help tell the stories of these very common people who viewed themselves quite different than we do.

Whenever you become overwhelmed pause and go back to a memorable event such as meeting one of these veterans. The times they went through may seem daunting to us today but try to remember the perspective they gave to you of their own experiences.

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While I don't chill out, I do find the peace and quiet of the setting to be exhilarating. I have had many nice moments holding a medal and sharing the history of the man who received it. Kind of a communion.

**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER HAS SADLY PASSED AWAY**

http://www.usmilitariaforum.com/forums/index.php?/topic/301020-robin-ray/

 

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This is a very good question and I have enjoyed reading people's thoughts. I know what you are saying about it being depressing, I have had that feeling from time to time. It doesn't bring me down per se, but sometimes when holding a particular item, I have a somber type feeling. What depresses me is that so few seem to care about these items and what some of them represent. I don't expect every one to understand our hobby, and do keep in mind these aren't stamps or baseball cards. A great deal of these items, especially named ones, sometimes can bring a very intense feeling if you think about them, but just be glad we're the people trusted in their safe keeping, and they didn't just get thrown away like so many other things did.

Always interested in purchasing items pertaining to the 505 Parachute Infantry Regiment in WWII (82nd Airborne Div.). Please send me a PM if you have something.

 

 

 

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Does that include never even speaking or writing about having signed such documents?!?!

 

The collecting remains fun. Even the connections these uniforms bring to the past I find to be uplifting. To hold in my hands awards, badges and wings that represent the accomplishments of men & women who gave thought to only what they were doing in that moment and not necessarily how momentous their involvement is truly inspirational.

It is only proper to feel strong emotion for the hundreds of thousands who were lost to military conflict in the past decades but it is far better to acknowledge those deeds by continuing to collect, if that is your passion and gathering items that help tell the stories of these very common people who viewed themselves quite different than we do.

Whenever you become overwhelmed pause and go back to a memorable event such as meeting one of these veterans. The times they went through may seem daunting to us today but try to remember the perspective they gave to you of their own experiences.

Thank you. I have found fellowship with other veterans more so than the VA system. Veterans 4 veterans groups are by far the best experience I have had and continue to connect with them. Also they have been a good source for my military interest. Only by collecting, displaying and story telling do we honor and give voice to the service of others.

Interested in military buttons and insignia

 

Always remember our Girls and Boys in Uniform - Past and Present..

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