Posts Tagged ‘summer’

9/11 Flag of Honor hung in the hallway at my daughters school. The names of all those who died are contained within the flag.

As we move on towards Memorial Day this coming Monday, it will be easy to forget the reason we (most of us anyhow) have the day off.  As we get ready to attend or host a BBQ the memorial part of Memorial Day can sometimes slip by the wayside.  It is very understandable, things, especially ideals, get lost in the shuffle.  It is not a crime, it is just something that happens.

Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer with the opening of public pools, the first nicest weather (fingers crossed) to start hosting BBQs and parties, the beaches begin to become a little bit more attractive, hemlines get just a tinsey bit higher and Southern women can again begin to wear white shoes.  All of these things would still be possible even without Memorial Day, it is not like the weather or seasons are going to change just because there is a National holiday.

The Federal government has seen fit however to give us a moment, a day really, on which to reflect before we begin the 100 or so days of summer and all that entails.  That moment of reflection is significant as it is predicated on people taking the time to appreciate the sacrifices made in order for us to remain a free country and give our citizens the ability to enjoy the coming days as they see fit.

For many folks it can be amongst the most painful of times, they are the family survivors of someone who has paid the ultimate price.  They will have constant reminders as they see numerous parades in honor of veterans throughout the country, Old Glory lowered to half-staff, motorcycle poker runs with flags flapping in the breeze behind them, and the loud music and boisterous partying of their friends and neighbors who have probably not felt the loss as they have.

Major League Baseball, each and every Memorial Day stops play at 3:00 PM and holds a moment of remembrance.  The Homeplate Umpire steps forward and removes his mask signifying the moment, regardless of inning.  Baseball has always been one of the most patriotic of sports, the players across the league each year sending messages to the troops deployed downrange and hosting veterans and their families in very special ways.  Satellite radios Octane channel will stop music and play TAPS at noon on Monday.  Various other museums and memorial locations will also host their unique tributes to veterans and their families during the day.

At some point this weekend as the frivolity goes on, take a moment at any time, stop what is going on and call for just a moment of silence in the festivities.  At the end if the environment is conducive, raise a glass and have a shot.  Play the video for TAPS that I am including here:

Whatever your flavor may be it is still possible today thanks to the efforts and sacrifices of veterans and their families.  Here is one I have heard too many times through the years at memorials and funerals for the following.  I happen to like this one as it includes police officers as well as the military.

Enjoy your holiday weekend!



There are many unsung heroes that our country should be proud to acknowledge.  Unfortunately, there are many who go unnoticed, whose burdens will be carried with them far longer than most of our memories can imagine.  The family provides the support and motivation the soldier needs to complete their mission.  They are the reason they do what they do, day in and day out.  As hard as it is on the adults in the family, the further reaching consequences are the burdens of the children, many of whom will have no memories of their own, all they will know will be handed down by story as they were too young to remember the parent they lost.

This was taken from a friend and former comrade in arms Facebook posting.  I do not know who the author is but I can tell from the tone and feel that it is someone who has had the unfortunate experience personally.  Look beyond the words, and feel as this person must surely have, in order to convey such a message.

Daddy’s Poem…

Her hair was up in a ponytail,
Her favorite dress tied with a bow.
Today was Daddy’s Day at school,
And she couldn’t wait to go.

But her mommy tried to tell her,
That she probably should stay home;
Why the kids might not understand,
If she went to school alone.

But she was not afraid;
She knew just what to say.
What to tell her classmates
Of why he wasn’t there today.
But still her mother worried,
For her to face this day alone.
And that was why, once again,
She tried to keep her daughter home.

But the little girl went to school,
Eager to tell them all.
About a dad she never sees, a dad
Who never calls.

There were daddies along the wall in
Back, for everyone to meet.
Children squirming impatiently,
Anxious in their seat.

One by one the teacher called
On a student from the class.
To introduce their daddy,
As seconds slowly passed.

At last the teacher called her name,
Every child turned to stare.
Each of them was searching,
A man who wasn’t there.

“Where’s her daddy at?”
She heard a boy call out.
“She probably doesn’t have one,”
Another student dared to shout.

And from somewhere near the back,
She heard a daddy say,
“Looks like another deadbeat dad,
Too busy to waste his day.”

The words did not offend her,
As she smiled up at her Mom.
And looked back at her teacher, who
Told her to go on.

And with hands behind her back,
Slowly she began to speak.
And out from the mouth of a child,
Came words incredibly unique.

“My Daddy couldn’t be here,
Because he lives so far away.
But I know he wishes he could be,
Since this is such a special day.

And though you cannot meet him,
I wanted you to know
All about my daddy,
And how much he loves me so.

He loved to tell me stories,
He taught me to ride my bike;
He surprised me with pink roses,
And taught me to fly a kite.

We used to share fudge sundaes,
And ice cream in a cone.
And though you cannot see him.
I’m not standing here alone.

‘Cause my daddy’s always with me,
Even though we are apart;
I know because he told me,
He’ll forever be in my heart”

With that, her little hand reached up,
And lay across her chest.
Feeling her own heartbeat,
Beneath her favorite dress.

And from somewhere there in the crowd of dads,her mother stood in tears.
Proudly watching her daughter,
Who was wise beyond her years.

For she stood up for the love
Of a man not in her life.
Doing what was best for her,
Doing what was a right.

And when she dropped her hand back
Down, staring straight into the crowd.
She finished with a voice so soft,
But its message clear and loud.

“I love my daddy very much,
he’s my shining star.
And if he could, he’d be here,
But heaven’s just too far.

You see he is an American Soldier
And he died just this past year,,
When a roadside bomb hit his convoy
And taught Americans to fear.

But sometimes when I close my eyes,
it’s like he never went away.”
And then she closed her eyes,
And saw him there that day.

And to her mother’s amazement,
She witnessed with surprise,
A room full of daddies and children,
All starting to close their eyes.

Who knows what they saw before them;
Who knows what they felt inside.
Perhaps for merely a second,
They saw him at her side.

“I know you’re with me Daddy,”
To the silence she called out.
And what happened next made believers,
Of those once filled with doubt.

Not one in that room could explain it,
For each of their eyes had been closed.
But there on the desk beside her,
Was a fragrant long-stemmed pink rose.

And a child was blessed, if only for
A moment, by the love of her shining star.
And given the gift of believing,
That heaven is never too far.


There must be many children in the same boat as this little girl, thanks to our servicemen and their families for the sacrifice they are making to keep our country Free.
The ULTIMATE sacrifice is being left behind.
Don’t forget them.

As we get closer to the long Memorial Day weekend, please think beyond the first real weekend of the summer months, remember why the day is a holiday and the sacrifices all around that make it so.