Magazine | April 2, 2012, Issue


A War in Photos

Reading John Derbyshire’s story “O Valiant Hearts” (March 5) on the significance of his father’s picture with Private David Seaton, I was reminded of a picture from 1944 that I didn’t see until just a few years ago. It shows some American soldiers of the 29th Infantry Division at Lizard Point, England, shortly before the D-Day invasion. One of the men in the picture is my uncle, Sergeant Adam Starzyk, who was killed in action a few weeks later in France.

I was unaware of the picture until doing a Web search for U.S. Army units that participated in the invasion. That search led me to the 175th Infantry (assigned to the 29th) website and ultimately to my being contacted by William Hausfeld, a member of the 175th Infantry. Mr. Hausfeld contacted me first by e-mail, and followed with a letter and a copy of the picture. In the letter, he explained that my uncle was his squad leader and did his job well. In the picture, there are crosses stenciled over the men who were killed. There are quite a few crosses visible.

My uncle had previously served in the Army during the 1930s, and I’m sure he was quite aware of the possible results of going into harm’s way. Mr. Hausfeld is alive and well, living near Cincinnati, Ohio, and I can’t thank him enough for this treasure, and Mr. Derbyshire for reminding me of its significance.

John M. Starzyk

Via e-mail


A Frackin’ Spelling Test

Before the word “frack” became a four-letter word figuratively (Kevin D. Williamson, “The Truth about Fracking,” February 20), it was a four-letter word literally. I have worked with frac crews for almost 40 years, and the process of pumping sand in a well at high pressure was long known as “fracing.” We saved our “k” for other four-letter words, such as “work,” which we did 24/7—liter­ally, not figuratively.

Chris Perry

Casper, Wyo.


Worse Than We Realized

I just read through Andrew Roberts’s fine article (“God Save Her,” March 5) about Queen Elizabeth II and her compassionately modest diamond jubilee celebration, which cost £2.3 million, compared with £20 billion for the London Olympics.

One note. Mr. Roberts’s claim that the Olympics will cost “85 times” as much as the jubilee is a bit off. The actual ratio of 20 billion to 2.3 million is close to 8,700.

Ken Clare

Via e-mail

Members of the National Review editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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