Sunday, May 27, 2018

Memorial Day musings

This will be yet another Memorial Day in which I am unable to give my dad-in-law a bear hug, and tell him that I love him and appreciate his service. He passed away nine years ago, and was laid to rest with military honors.

He was one of the unsung heroes who put down what he was working on in 1942 and sailed across the sea on the Queen Mary, the ship that was stripped of her finery in order to put as many fighting men as possible on their way to England. He lived almost three years in Polebrook, England, as part of the Mighty Eighth Air Corps.  

He did a little bit of everything, from serving as navigator in a huge B-17 Flying Fortress, to timing the take-offs of the 351st Bomber Group, from a tiny shack at the end of the runway. Filling in as a mechanic, picking up airmen off the runway when a bomber crashed, riding a bicycle in to town for a welcome respite, and writing, writing, writing love letters to his bride of less than two years, and their little son.....

What a life. What a sacrifice. And I know that his story is only one of so very many. He was blessed to make it home safely and continue building a family, a business, and a life.  Not all come home safely, though.

So, on Memorial Day, I'd like to say that I'm truly grateful to live in this, the greatest country of all, and that I'm grateful so many were willing to give that last measure of devotion. The freedoms I enjoy were purchased by them. 
And to those who serve today -- thank you, too. From the bottom of my heart.

Today, in the midst of festivities and feasts, find a veteran or someone who is serving today. Tell them thanks. Don't be ashamed to wave the flag. 

And have an awesome Memorial Day, y'all!



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