Upon graduating high school, I snuck to Yuma, Ariz., to marry my sweetheart, Wilma, on June 6, 1943. I was only 19. But the next few years would be very different for me, as I was drafted into the Armed Forces in October that year.
Gen. George S. Patton's 3rd Army liberated the city of Pilzen, Czech Republic, in the spring of 1945. During the 60th-anniversary commemoration, the city elected to remember Patton with a foundation stone. But the statue of Patton was canceled by the city of Pilzen because the builder, Jaroslav Bocker, had collaborated with Communist secret police during the Cold War.