Pete Gets Caught in the Middle

July 10, 2021

Fairport’s own Pete DuPré is a 98-year-old veteran of World War II.  He worked in a hospital treating those injured in the Battle of the Bulge.  Essentially the last stand for Hitler in 1945.  DuPré graduated from Edison Tech in 1942.  Likes Johann Strauss waltzes.  Lives by the words, “Don’t let the old man in.”  And plays the harmonica like nobody’s business. 

World War II veteran Peter DuPré, age 96, played the national anthem on his harmonica to kick off a soccer game between the US Women’s National Team and Mexico from May 2019. At the age of 18, DuPré, enlisted in the Army (shown at right in uniform around that time) to serve as a medic with the 114th General Hospital Unit in Kidderminster, England

So why does ‘Harmonica Pete’, as he is known, find himself in the middle of a controversy?  Because he deals in the business of playing the national anthem.  Which is often a no-win situation these days.

98-year-old World War II veteran Pete DuPré played the national anthem on a harmonica before the @USWNT ’s Olympic send-off match via Twitter @ESPN

It certainly was in East Hartford, CN on Monday.   Pete played the anthem prior to the US National women’s soccer game with Mexico.  The team’s final Olympic tune-up.  The United States players lined up and faced either the American flag flying on one side of the stadium.  Or faced Pete as he performed.  Granted, the optics weren’t great.
Well… out came the conservatives to take on one of their favorite targets.  The women were accused of either disrespecting the flag.  Or disrespecting Pete.  Depending on which way they turned.

Members of the @USWNT standing facing different directions during the National Anthem from their Olympic send-off match via Twitter @ESPN

One of the former president’s cabinet members even got into the act… calling the Olympians self-obsessed children.
Here’s the thing guys.  Get your story straight.  Agree on a tactic.  It’ll make it a little easier for you to try to get us to believe that COVID-19 was created by Big Pharma and that model Chrissy Teigen actually does eat children. 

Catch Bill Pucko every weekend on The Press Box, airing on 13-WHAM ABC and FOX Rochester

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