C’est La Vie

Feb 27, 2024

Dana Casadei, Media Relations Specialist

Throughout the 11 days Carl Misch was in the Angela Hospice Care Center, he and his family shared many special memories together, one standing out from the rest: his We Honor Veterans ceremony.

In a quiet room where Carl was sleeping, they were able to honor the soldier he had been during World War II with the Third Infantry, and the proud veteran he was every day after his service ended.

“It meant everything to us, that he would be able to have that honor,” said Claudia Crane, one of Carl’s four children. “I know they said he could hear it… I wish he had been able to see it. I guess he was watching from the rearview mirror.”

Claudia and her siblings watched as Margot Parr – a fellow veteran and Angela Hospice volunteer, who Claudia called “a gift to Angela Hospice” – performed the ceremony, taking the time to weave in personal details about his time in the army, and his fellow soldiers who had fought in WWII.

Like many veterans, Carl didn’t actually talk about his time in the army until much later in life, about 15 years ago according to Paul, Carl’s son. And even then, it was only bits here and there, slowly revealing stories that had stuck with Carl after all these years.

Carl at his 90th birthday.

As Carl began to reveal more about his time as a sergeant in the army, his family learned he was highly decorated, with eight medals, including the Bronze Star Medal; had been a part of the first platoon to place a flag on Eagles Nest; and received a rosary from Pope Pius XII, which he sent back home to his mother.

“I think, by him bringing it out, it kind of led him to let go of a lot of those things that he kept inside,” Paul said. “I think it humanized him in the sense that we never really knew that these things happened during that two-and-a-half years that really formed the rest of his life.”

While telling these stories, Carl mentioned that a leader in the Army had once told him “c’est la vie,” after a particularly harrowing day. That phrase – meaning, “that’s life” – would become something that helped him get through the rest of his time in the service, and how he would often end his war stories. His time in the service made him appreciate life more.

Carl felt his life was a gift, and Paul and Claudia felt finding Angela Hospice for their dad was a gift as well.

“They treated us like we were family,” Paul said. “Like they would treat their family.”

“Bottom line, it’s heaven on Earth,” Claudia said. “When it comes to your loved one at the end of life, that’s what you want, you want them to make that transition from Earth to heaven.”

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