I know exactly what you mean. My great grandmother had a husband and five sons overseas, all of them on the front lines or very close to it.
She was left at home with her only surviving daughter, and a boy who was 7 when they all left, he was several years older when the last came home, a POW who was a bit of a late arrival (total of two POW's). That boy was my grandfather, who later went to Korea, and stayed out of the mix as well as he could as a communications guy (don't know what they were called back then).
Every last one survived. My family buried it's last WWII vet on my grandfather's side this past summer, and it's only Korean vet in 2009.
My grandmother's brother is still alive, and served in Korea with my grandfather (he introduced the two, but tried to keep them apart), and later served in Vietnam, also in communications. Other than a larynectomy and several bouts with cancer, he seems to intend to stick around for a while.
Funny, no military history on my Dad's family, but several potters. They've been called, I kid you not, the "rockstars of the pottery world". WTH?
Sorry. The ADD has been kicking my butt today.
Come if you must, but only if you must. For the day you find yourself upon my step, will surely be the night you find peace along Jordan's edge.
I firmly believe that any man's finest hour, the greatest fulfillement of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause, and lies exhausted on the field of battle... Victorious.
"Without the rain, we wouldn't appreciate the sun."~GGC