Every Memorial Day, I visit the North Hadley Cemetery and visit this stone. George Scott lived next to the Kushi Farm in North Hadley, MA and was a friend of my grandfather growing up.
The story I have been told is that he spoke with my grandfather the day before he left to serve – my grandfather was the foreman of the farm under my great-grandfather at the time. Grandpa likely wished him well, to be safe and that he would see him when he returned. George Scott looked at my grandfather and said, “Joe, I’m not coming back.”
On June 14, 1944, 18/19 year old Pvt. George H. Scott, Hadley, MA, was killed in action near Talamone, Italy – part of the 36th Divisions efforts at the end of Anzio and after as they pushed north of Rome, where they were met with fierce resistance. Pvt. Scott did come back to North Hadley, but not to resume a life. Rather, it was to be laid to rest in a small country cemetery that he had walked by hundreds of times in a life cut too short by the guns of war.
That is the price of freedom. This is what Memorial Day is about. I will remember this story always.