NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – On Wednesday, Friday and Saturday afternoons Bert Stolier serves as a volunteer.
“This is my home, I am a New Orleans boy born right there on magazine Street,” says Stolier. He’s now 95 years old. A survivor of the attack on Pearl Harbor his memories of World War II are painful and tragic.
“By the time that day was over we had lost approximately one thousand service people,” he recounts.
Yet, he’d rather spend his time here at the National World War II museum meeting people and speaking to children.
“You can tell them where you were and what you accomplished,” Stolier says. “But the real infighting you don’t talk about, because that is mean, to look into another guy’s eyes and then shoot him. But those days are over and I’m so glad to be alive.”
Stories of courage, adventure, love and brotherhood resonate throughout the museum and captivate anyone willing to listen. Pay attention when you visit, for it won’t be long before the best storytellers of our lifetime go silent.
“We had almost three hundred and some odd World War II veterans here, we’re down to twenty-six. They say that I come from that great generation, that’s what Tom Brokaw said, but you know what, we’re not the great generation we had a job to do, we did it. You young people are the great generation and don’t let us down,” says Stolier.
On this 70th anniversary of D-Day, we pay tribute to all veterans, bonded by their sacrifices, it is from you that we learn how to live graciously.