Christmas is a time of joy and worship in the Lucas family. But there’s a certain sadness on Christmas Eve. My mother’s first husband was killed in the battle of St Vith, Belgium, Christmas Eve, 1944. The Nazis had broken through American lines and surrounded troops in Bastogne and St Vith. Our guys were fighting hard, but the Germans had superior fire power and better tanks. Thousands of men died in the Battle of the Bulge.
So I intend, each year, to honor the thousands who were killed, wounded and taken POW on this night 71 years ago through the story of Mathew Whalen, the father of my older half brother. I never met him. But I loved and respected my brother and mother. Through them, I got to know the character and the meaning of this man.