Saturday, November 10, 2012


My school had an assembling yesterday afternoon, giving honor a little early to all the veterans out there. Some relatives of the kids, I suppose, representing each service and both genders, were seated to each side and in front of a movie screen, a small lectern positioned between the rows and facing the entire Elementary population filling the gymnasium bleachers. Little American flags, plainly marked with the claim of having been “made in China”, had been passed out to all grades when they filed in and were now being waved with a loud exuberant chant of “USA! USA! USA!” Mostly, all I got to hear was Lee Greenwood, along with everyone gathered there, sing of one’s love of country just before having to escort one of our Special-Ed children back to our room. My heart was already full, though, those lyrics stirring up something within, memories of my father and uncles bringing a bit of tear to my eyes… Early this morning my mind turned to those women who were also part of that “Great Generation”. Aunt Lois, through the course of those years, while involving herself in a local scout program, became an ambulance paramedic and then went on to graduate as a registered nurse, all while raising a daughter and maintaining her home. Aunt Vi was married to a trucker and learned to operate one of those semis every bit as well as any man, actually giving one poor fellow a lesson once when he had downtown traffic tied up trying to back his rig into an alleyway. She lost her one son in Korea a bit later, but never gave up her grit. My mother, with no education, managed while dad fought in Italy, her brood of three wanting for nothing; and when he died later, at the age of forty, she worked nightshift at the Post Office for three decades while raising two more with her second husband… This nation is in my blood, in the very depths of who I am; but looking around at where we are today, the corruption of politics in general, the morals of people who think “freedom” means getting something for nothing, it’s easy to ponder what others sacrificed. My faith remains my strength, giving sense to that which sometimes seems to make no sense. Tomorrow I intend to drive up to the cemetery and thank a few people……


  1. And you will be one of the ones I think of, Jim. Thank you.

    1. Thank you, Annie. God save America.