Desert Hot Springs, CA
On the anniversary of D-Day, the tears prove it. For 94-year-old Russ Snell, time has not healed all wounds.
"You never forget. It’s unbelievable that I’m still here," Snell said holding back tears.
Seventy three years later and D-Day is still the hardest thing to talk about.
"I was just a kid so to speak," Snell said choking up.
At 20-years-old, Snell was one of the paratroopers behind enemy lines on D-Day. Snell’s wife said his memories of D-Day still haunt him.
"When he jumped in Normandy, he was coming up over a mound, and there was a German officer with his head blown off. He has seen that same image all his life," Marjorie Snell said.
Snell’s wife looks back on her husband’s service to the United States with love and pride. She even wrote a book about him.
"Hearing on the radio about Pearl Harbor, he knew that now that America was involved that we had to do something, and that war was a horrible thing, but he knew that it was worth fighting for, living for and sometimes dying for," she said.
Even though he still has a hard time reliving some of those wartime memories, Snell’s wife says he’s an inspiration.
"He could of become a victim of feeling sorry for himself because of having PTSD, but he didn’t let it keep him back. He decided he made the decision to be positive and thankful for life," she said about her husband.
Snell said he’s no hero, he just did what he had to do to serve his country.
"I was proud to do what I did that’s all I know," Snell exclaimed.