Houston Matters

Thank You For Your Service: Encounter With A D-Day Survivor Changes Vet’s Perspective

Houston comedian and storyteller Ty Mahany — himself a veteran — tells the story of how an encounter with a survivor of the D-Day invasion changed how he feels about the practice of thanking veterans for their service.

Comedian and storyteller Ty Mahany onstage during the 2016 Houston Matters Road Show.

The new film Thank You For Your Service offers a sobering look at how soldiers contend with the horrors of war after they return home. The title of the film refers to what many of us say to veterans when we don’t know what else to say.

When Houston comedian and storyteller Ty Mahany was in the military, he had an encounter with a survivor of the D-Day invasion. Like many of us would, he shook the veteran’s hand and thanked him for his service.

But, while most encounters would end there, Mahany tells us what happened next and how it shaped his thoughts about people (including himself) thanking vets for their service.

Mahany is a frequent contributor to Houston Matters. While he stands out in his appearances on this show for his sometimes acerbic wit and unique perspective on the world, he’s also known around town as a well-respected storyteller. In 2014, he won the grand slam competition at the Houston edition of The Moth StorySLAM, and his true-life, first-person accounts have also been presented at Bootown’s Grown-up Storytime events.

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