RIP Charles Durning. American character actor and WW2 veteran.
In pop culture hes most known for voicing Peter Griffins father Francis from 1999-2009 in Family Guy.
I thought that this story he shared from WW2 is something that should be remembered about the man. Even if you dont recognize him its still something that sticks with you.
“I was crossing a field somewhere in Belgium,” he said. “A German soldier ran toward me carrying a bayonet. He couldn’t have been more than 14 or 15. I didn’t see a soldier. I saw a boy. Even though he was coming at me, I couldn’t shoot.”
They grappled, he recounted later — he was stabbed seven or eight times — until finally he grasped a rock and made it a weapon. After killing the youth, he said, he held him in his arms and wept.
Mr. Durning said the memories never left him, even when performing, even when he became, however briefly, someone else.