An aging WW2 veterans is escorted onto the Hermione, July 3, 2015

Here and below aging WW2 veterans are escorted onto the Hermione, July 3, 2015. Note the cameraman in the bottom image.

Some readers know of my fascination with aging soldiers. On Friday another volunteer and I conducted an oral history at Governors Island with a former trumpeter in the First Army Band. He told us that in the mid-1950s he and the band gigged in Vermont at a ceremony for a handful of aging Civil War veterans. This was on my mind a few hours later when I was at the South Street Seaport to see the Hermione. There were many things going on for the July 4th weekend, including something for World War II veterans. There is still a ways to go before the WW2 soldiers are finally no more. Generationally they are at the point where Civil War veterans were in the 1920s-30s. There were then still many thousands, which got down to the hundreds, and then finally just a handful over the next 15-20 years. I am too young to remember that, but I do remember a time when soldiers of the Great War were not that uncommon. Seeing these two being escorted onto the Hermione I could not help but wonder who will be the Frank Buckles of the Greatest Generation.