« The Moth

Veterans Day: Scott Young & Tom Sitter

2021-11-11 | 🔗

This week, two stories honoring Veterans, and a can’t-miss interview with 98-year-old WWII Vet Tom Sitter. This episode is hosted by Jon Goode. To see the extras for this episode, head to our website: themoth.org/extras

Hosted by: Jon Goode

Storytellers: Scott Young & Tom Sitter

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This shows supported by the Schubert Organization, in partnership with the Kimmel Cultural Campus, presenting Rogers and Hammerstein Oklahoma at the forest theatre. This is Ok Homa, as you ve, never seen, or heard it before re imagined for the twenty first century and Tony award winner for best revival of musical this visionary production allows the classic Musical and our country to be seen in a whole new light. Coming to Philadelphia March, eight through twentieth for tickets visit tell a charge dark com. The mouth is brought to you by progressive. Are you thinking more about how to tighten up your budget? These days, drivers who saved by switching to progressive, save over seven hundred dollars on average and customers can qualify for an average of six discounts when they sign up a little off your rate. Each month goes a long way get a quote today. A progressive dotcom, progressive casualty, insurance company in affiliates national annual average insurance savings by new customers surveyed who saved would progressive between June
may twenty and may twenty twenty one potential savings, will very discounts area and are not available in all states in situations are you or do you know a high school student with a story to tell do you want to learn to craft your own story join them off for our all country programme. A free virtual out of school programme with high schoolers from all over the country dig in to the unique wonder of your life, build your confidence and and your story, all country will run every Saturday or Sunday for seven weeks, starting April second, to apply visit them. Dot, org slash all country applications will open February. Twenty eighth: the deadline to apply is March thirteenth. We hope to see their welcome to the more partners on John Good, your For this week, originally coitus Armistice day by President Woodrow Wilson in nineteen nineteen the day we now
Hold is veterans day is a elevates and celebrate those who stood a pole. around the world in defence of freedom every year. Member of the eleventh. We remember and honour their commitments, service and sacrifice our first over this week comes from Scott Young. SK told this story at a grand slam in London with a theme, but the night was lost in fail. You're Skype LAB at the mouth if I'm complemented at all on my physical appearance. It's usually one of two things, my thick full beard or my beefy muscular legs. I get both from my mother she's only I've too, but she is built thick and has a her suit.
This many men would envy. I grew up to the acrid smell of the wax she boiled mornings to remove the whiskers from her chin Yet all you ever heard growing up was just like your father. Now. I knew that wasn't physical, because my dad six four and had a baby smooth face and ass. My mother, like to say, had to run around in the shower to get ready with so skinny. Not the genes I got. So what was it about me that made me like my father, it's hard being compared to a ghost My father died fighting in the Vietnam war. When I was only too he was twenty one and he had a choice. He could get release. from active duty one month early or he could spend a week. leave in Hawaii with my mother, and I he chose to get out of active duty early. He died a war hero,
killed by mortar fire, rescuing injured soldiers on the weak, he would have been in Hawaii with us on my mother's birthday, if you wrote it is fiction, your editor would cut it because it's not believable, but it's My life, my father, was drafted because he quit his job less. My mother and I took off to San Francisco for what we hope will be the second summer of love. I can hardly blame him for that. He came with a draft notice and said he was against the war and he wanted to ditch the draft and for my mom and I to run away to Canada. With my mother, said no, my mom. there said be a man and fight for your country. Her regret is deep. Now, when kids would ask me about my father and I'd say died in the war.
They always say, I'm sorry and I'd say don't be. I never knew him. I was super defence, and I was I presented their pay but I was Zenos angry and they didn't why so just sort of buried those feelings I do now that the Vietnam WAR venture didn't get any parades. Nobody spoke with pride of serving in the one war America lost, and nobody back then honoured my mother and I by car, ass, a gold star family, the Vietnam WAR was a mistake. It was an embarrassment and there was no space for me to be proud of my father, this war hero. So I wasn't. I was twenty four when I decided to go to Bill Clinton, inauguration kind of late last minute idea and this book by his win hopeful for the future, and I wanted to see this monument that they'd bill for the Vietnam WAR veterans I knew my dad's name was on and they didn't want.
Make a big deal out of it, so I purposely decided I wouldn't choose what which there would go there. So was the third day I was there, and I found myself standing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial looking down at the black gash of granite and decided. It was time and when you enter you can give them the name of a person and they'll print out a piece of paper that shows you the location, so you can find it. I couldn't believe that the paper said said Ronald L, young boy. January nineteenth. It was January nineteenth. he died when I was too we never celebrated is birthday. The only birthday I thought of with my dad really was my mother's. The day he died, which was always a miserable experience, but still I randomly decided to go that day. I
on my father's name on the wall around my thing over the catching facing the high black glass of the Vietnam WAR. Memorial is like seeing yourself through a mirror darkly all of the complicated, wings around the Vietnam WAR are embodied. In the monument design, but my island, it is a splendid visual metaphor I can see the Washington Monument proud reflected as those who oblique haze, and I reflected for the first time in my life on my own loss. Standing there and this Flowers, amend toes notes, American flags of all sizes burning candles everywhere at my feet I was overwhelmed. I suddenly realized in all.
signs. People said sorry and I said, don't be, I never knew him was exactly why they were sorry. Why I was so sorry. Now I wept Stranger came up to me and put their arm around me. Well, I cried on ice we looked. I was stunned to see it was just a young girl, too young, We, the daughter of anyone on the wall she bit. Witness to my grief, we didn't speak. We didn't have to. I've no live thirty more years and my father did. I never find a war and I don't think I'm anybody's hero, but people still say well honestly Lastly, my mother, here, just like your father now.
now that makes me proud. that was Scott. Young Scott is all been a storyteller from spinning fantastical tales in the playground, publishing article it was about a late night life to creating marketing narratives as a creative director. Scott believes that we face and life's meaning through story to see those of Scots family and other Vietnam Betterments Memorial hit while website the moth dot org slash extras our next storytellers Tom sitter Tomtom This story at historic, Lamb in medicine with a theme of the night, was karma.
Be sure to stick around after the applause to hear a one of a kind conversation that I hate with Tom Veteran, the veteran here's Tom LAB at the mall my name is: tom setter. Ninety three years old and celebrating now during world war. Two I found myself in and in France, Now the battle of the bulge had started unnoticed December of that hearing continue to January. We got there was pretty much over, but we were out on a medical battalion ever cared to clean up pretty much. We carried bodies in parts of bodies and prisoners to to station hospitals in today, eight cents now
over there we ran into are arch enemies. The night armor division. he has her all tankers and they were me and we had to put up both trained and Kansas during Newark Fort Riley during her were too and two we and the cavalry I agenda cavalry at the time we had this great universe, boots and breeches, and really, you really turned of heads, and we know it can any are we going to town and when tankers you Peter, Oh by the way, the report was forty. Two they still had horse, Cavalry Donna, forever in addition to the mechanized cover So when we go to town attackers anchors bar code, we can walk again and nature. A smell horseshit. The twenty ninth must be here, We gave as good as we as reach. Filter a of fights going on eleven March and,
want a mood instigate face for reaching a cavalry song a bear with me parity, the cavalry the cavalry withered behind her ears, the cavalry The cavalry they drink up all the bears, the infantry and tanks, the core of engineers they couldn't whip the cab, Ray and a hundred thousand years, that created I do not create a lot of fun still animation weak get over to Europe, we ran into the night time admission I'll, tell you how we first when we first landed a twentieth, armor division, twelve thousand men, tanks and armoured cars and jeeps and everything else. First, aid ever we landed franchise to break up into segments and they put us with the first. Third and a night army, so we were part of the ninth army and up nearly up near the Rhine,
We are next to the british and canadian troops, and during that time we leave. He did Andy I still region, move up the butter We notice me got up to two closer Rhine, her heart, sank, we knew fresh, while the Germans, when they retreated, acted bother it had. They blew up bridges all the way, and we know that when we got to Ryan. We sought an immense body of water, we knew our heart sank. We know we're gonna have to cross probably and rubber rush hour, tiny boats, so it far did at my rosary, got a pretty good work out during a time anyway. Finally, this is done by now was February of nineteen. Forty five, Now the Rhine River start is a Trickle Swiss Alps, and when it comes with because northeasterly flowing
into the North sea. It becomes a huge river hundreds of yards across and we just straightened the thought of crossing it. By early march we had good news, someone had captured abrasion at Remagen, it was a railway trestle bridge and it was captured. All arch enemy, the nighttime division, great guys, so we. Finally, we re united a twentieth. I revision funny went to the point where we went across now site armor division had fuck terribly hard to win. It, the Germans, tried to block the trust, a bridge and what happened in some of the charges for some reason:
only knows that didn't go off, so the dietary had to go into that trestle crawl under fire entered cut, Ire cutwaters remove charges that didn't detonate at any moment. They thought the thing we go up. your face, and then a type of at the bridge no was intact, but it was tilted and very shaky. You couldn't you couldn't get a vehicle across her, so the diary dismounted had crawled under fire when across at each one of time under far and establish a bridgehead on the other side of the river and they held a bridgehead. Those lucky several sources- hell, they're bridge long enough for patent bridges to be built where we were well that the term his armor jewish Funny was united and we ve got across at TAT point now. gardener ambulance, restart, offer us upon two very flimsy pontoon bridge the big bridges, thirty months, wherefore tanks and trucks. But as we got onto this pontoon
I can tell a shaky. We were worst sway, from side to side and dipping and everything else and of which the water was checked. water, which blackened was cold. I was in March and we We made one mistake that ambulance was going to go into the water with Senate, and in doing so we're gonna to pontoon bridge, which means that if we survive the water floating downstream. Our own troops would about shipping shooting at us and others who are waiting across the bridge we want to get across the bridge when, over and on the other side of the bridge, we needed United and a twenty Army division was attached to the second. The seventh army and we swept through Germany have we went through it down along my hi, I'm an outspoken salt and east and finally got to how nice another story about going to have
Munich and finally across the river and got into the various and as we can towards the austrian border. We almost reached it on May seventh, one forty five and the war ended now yesterday was may seventh and I mean talk, but seventy two years and To say I'm here to tell him that story, because I wouldn't be here: had it not been for those incredible bravery of those glorious asteroids, the ninth armor division,
this year. That was Tom. Sitter Tom was born on August, sixteen nineteen, three in Milwaukee Wisconsin, it's a retired building in fire inspector in World war to combat medic. Who served in a European Rhineland and Central Europe Campaigns, This body must army service. He was a motorcycle a simpleton Mckenna has Cavalry and military police a medic, buglers, boxer and bitter bearer. Bitter bear is not what it sounds like. In this instance, litter means stretcher Tom currently resides in Medicine Wisconsin in the
almost eight in about to hear it is my distinct honour and privilege to speak of Tom about his life in service in the army. hello. This is John. Is this Mr Thompson? Yes, fantastic. It is an honour and a pleasure to have this com, station with you first as always I'd like to thank you for your service for all that you have done for this country and for us I myself, I was in the marine corps during the first others stone area guys, like you, definitely like pave the way for guys like me to come along and following you footsteps, you were you are very young man when you joined the army like twenty years, always decorate. I just turned just turn: Nike turned nineteen one thousand nine forty two year, while the way what inspired you to enlist
a Hollywood version of what the war was all about. You know I had no idea what war has really like, but we're all filled with enthusiasm, analyses young guys right so once you got in and got enlisted in did did boot, camping went over that change you as a person like what you saw. What war really was. How did that? I guess, inform these formative years of yours over over a long period of time. It made me a pacifists and abhor, or- There was no girl after the want, after I had been in combat for a while, and then I lost my very best friend of Rice Anders who was killed is heard. His ex infantry I gradually was already was on a sudden thing. Over the years, I just saw thought that war
so so useless and nobody red nobody really. Once in a war with one of your most vivid memories, your combat days, division was one of two dead liberated the cow, the concentration camps camp. That is something I will never never ever forget. It was just mine twisting the sea people treated they were all on on me. Some of nineteen forty five when Germany surrendered with all you had been through, like how did that feeling? do you remember that date, yeah tell you for one thing in the world swine need our we knew the less the weak, I, the war, there was hardly any resistance at all. Germans were coming out of the woods with their hands up hundreds and hundreds of Germans trying to surrender. Had we very careful someone who had come out of the woods it get shot
Oh well, when you heard they surrendered. Where I mean you know ahead of time, but when you got the official word was, was it just thought? like all. Well, you know we're heading home now tat we were down in Bavaria very close to the austrian border. Burke discarding riches, which was Hitler, is mounting retreat. I had the privilege of danger that place to live with. That was really something. I never forget. We're going through- we got everybody was over she ever. It is shown that Hitler was having done everyone, we won. The war was ending, we were arranged after we left that count. It gets to purchase garden to capture Hitler and Martin Borman. I welcome the French were also heading in that direction and a hundred fruits airborne hundred pursuing their first, so
it took over a virtuous therein, so when we get there, we were farming through the place like a bunch of locusts, she'll trying to get souvenirs. I didn't have the government anyway, that I heard a cup guys, hey sitter, centre commander. I lost in this big bathroom, it was a largest bathroom and we assumed it was Hitler's and they're both taking a leak in the bathroom, and I went with them, I want to be known as somebody that person headfirst best bet this, and I think, if you did, and his cards in that she'd been met. I wonder whether I thought they had shown. Two years ago, I got a secret That should never guess in a million years what I did so after you, you know you're you're, you're, Lisbon was over after you get
out of the army. How is your adjustment back to Civilian life might get back across the heirs of millions. Young guy. Look, I'm per job java, really hard define and you didn't have much choice. But We got on early enough enough in January of nineteen forty five and the bulk of the guys getting discharge were still so in service. So we got a hell of a lot of guys so, but there weren't we're unskilled and all week they undertake what whatever job was offered, but, I was struggling along with a lot of other guys didn't like the skills. Are we learned in service were not helpful. So now, you know at the age of ninety eight years, young having you know, live through world war, two having served and have it. Everything this come since, although the other wars, what advice Do you have four like the younger Jenny creation or or the world at large today avoid
We all the things that my mother told me try. To be honest, though, never never lie to yourself, Sir many of us. I've done that we ve done things ever wrong began. We lied yourselves to do it. She people, like you, a treat themselves and I've learned to hate bigotry. I dont know how much hate for anything, but a lot of disgust for people by bigoted, which is something as Vienna World WAR to a mean out of wood, said the route of that war is bigotry. You know at the root of this. The trees, ignorance and then in a wound around a group of people and you get to know them than you like all, while most of what I ve been told is in true now as you know, in the military, what they would always say you know work were all the same in a foxhole. There is no no black or white we're just where any together trying to push towards the same goal, and speaking of goes. I heard that
years back, you won the story. Slam Madison on fantastic death, That's the domestics bragging about. I was the first one ever to get a chance. Oh, I love it. I love it. You should put that on your business card. I you're nadir in Hitler's tab and the first person to get a ten medicines Doreslaer well Tom. Thank you so much for your time today. We really appreciate it: nice, shark, Andrea, hurried, Bubba, to see some photos of Tom at one website the month dot. Work, slash extremist! That's all for this episode from all of us here at the mouth. Have a story worthy. John good is an Emmy nominated writer raised in Richmond Virginia and currently residing in Atlanta Georgia. Johns work has been done
shared on CNN Black in America, HBO, Deaf poetry jam in tv ones, verses in flow? He has written a collection of poetry in short stories entitled Conduit, novel entitled MIDAS John, is Of AIR Sarah be encouraged host of the moth Atlanta. This episode of the moth podcast was produced by Sir asked engine S. Sarah Jane Johnsing, Julia Personnel and me Davy somewhere, The rest of the MOSS leadership team includes Catherine Burns. Sarah Haber me Jennifer Hickson, MEG Bulls, Kate, hours, Jennifer Birmingham, Marina Cliche, Suzanne, rust, Brandon, Grant Inga Le Dusky, all, the chasm all moth stories. True, has remembered by storytellers for more our broadcast information pitching your own story and everything else. This is our website, the moth doc or the moth podcast.
is presented by Pierre X, the public radio exchange having make public radio more public at pr ex dot. Org meet Dan Dan build a kick ass bite company, but his old software made it impossible to keep up its demand. It took so much time, I'm just make things work. It was sucking the life out of him. Then he found oh, do oh, do automated his business by integrating inventory, manufacturing, accounting and marketing. Now he can meet the demand and grow even faster with the e commerce. App thanks to. Oh, do Dan doubled his revenue and can focus on what matters go to. Oh, do dot com, slash, moth to start a free trial, that's o d, o o dot com, slash math,.
Transcript generated on 2022-02-28.