Over the Independence Day holiday, many weren’t only celebrating the summer or having fun with fireworks; many were celebrating the United States of America, thankful for how soldiers fought to preserve American’s freedom, as well as for the individuals throughout history who have been a part of bettering the nation. Carl Spurlin Dekle was one of those people, only he struggled to celebrate what America is today. In an interview with his local television channel, this 100-year-old World War II veteran cries as he thinks of celebrating July 4th and his birthday, considering the state America is currently in.
More About Why the World War II Veteran Cries
Floridian, Dekle was asked by his local Fox 13 news channel for an interview to commemorate his 100th birthday, as well as the 4th of July, earlier this month. Sergeant Dekle, a former Marine showed off his medals and honors in the interview. He served in World War II in the 1st Marine Division and received a silver star for “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity,” according to The Wall of Valor Project.
Dekle was honored with this medal because he “conducted his half-track across a sandpit in the face of intense hostile fire and, keeping his vehicle abreast of the assault troops, directed his crew in delivering accurate fire at point-blank range,” according to The Wall of Valor Project. It continues to explain, “Repeatedly braving sniper, antitank and heavy machine-gun fire throughout the engagement, he inspired his unit to exert maximum effort in assisting to capture and destroy the enemy position.”
Although it’s clear his life wasn’t all roses and butterflies, given his experience in the war, Dekle hasn’t lost his love for life. He said, “I sincerely believe in this whole world–that believe everything is beautiful. I mean if I see…if I wake up in the morning and see these plants, and all of those flowers…, and the green grass in the ground, that’s beautiful.”
Apparently, this positive attitude was common throughout Dekle’s life, as well. Explaining how people him knew him in this way, Dekle said, “If I went into my church and didn’t say everything was beautiful, they’d think I was sick.”
At 100 years of age, Dekle, looks proudly back on his life, “I’ve lived a good life. I’ve had a lot of love and happiness,” he said.
But Dekle isn’t as hopeful about everything. In particular, his outlook on the state of America is sad enough for him that the World War II veteran cries thinking about it.
“We haven’t got the country we had when I was raised, not at all,” he says, speaking of how he believes the United States of America was a better country when he was young.
In fact, it was partly this pride in his nation that motivated him to fight as a Marine.
As Dekle thinks of himself and his friends and fellow Marines, who joined the military and fought in war, the World War II veteran cries because they fought for freedoms and a way of life that he struggles to see as present anymore in America.
“Nowadays, I am so upset,” Dekle explains, “The things we did, and the things we fought for, and the boys that died for it–it’s all gone down the drain.”
Dekle continues, “Our country’s gone to hell in a hand-basket.”
As he lists what he’s said about the World War II veteran cries and his voice trembles. At one point, he has to stop talking because he’s so upset.
Watch all he shared about in this interview by Fox 13:
At the point that Dekle has to pause, a crew member comes to comfort him, and he gently receives her comfort saying, “I’ll get over it. It just takes time.”
However, Dekle is clearly mourning over the loss of his friends in the war and how they had been fighting for a different American than exists today.