82nd Airborne Division Blog

It is good to be brave but better to be smart and less painful to those around you.

“Train thoroughly while you have the opportunity. Remember it is good to be brave but better to be smart and less painful to those around you.”

Colonel Mark Alexander
US 82nd Airborne Division
reflecting on his D-Day experiences

This is probably my favorite of all my grandfather’s quotes. I didn’t even know he said it until I found it on the Wharton University of Pennsylvania website.

Here’s another good one:

“It always pays to thank people. Particularly the ones that have been good to you.

And if a guy has not done well by you, sometimes it’s a good idea just to hit him in the mouth.”

The second half of that was only a joke. Funny though!

Here’s another. He sent this from the European Theater during the war.

“I have seen so much of death over here that I have come to believe one should do everything he can to enjoy life – as he may not be here tomorrow.”

OK, one more. We’ll end with one that kind of cracked me up when I heard him say it. He didn’t usually talk this way, but got colorful once in a while. He probably said a lot worse during the war though. When he came back from overseas, my grandmother said he cussed like a sailor. He had to clean his mouth up because my mother – two years old at the time – started picking up some nasty words.

“I kind of chewed his ass a little bit for lagging so far behind and I don’t think he liked it… That’s okay, I don’t give a god damn.”

If you have a quote that you like, add it in the comments section below. Please give credit to whomever said it.

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