When I was growing up in Townsend I always looked forward to the Memorial Day parade. As I grew older, I began to understand what Memorial Day is really all about. So I wrote the following that I hope can make it into the Townsend Times:
On this Memorial Day, while you're watching the parade, waiting for the coals to heat up in the barbecue, or just relaxing, take a pause to remember.
Remember the soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen who gave the ultimate gift to preserve our liberties.
Remember the mothers, fathers, sons and daughters who sacrificed their lives.
Remember they were just farmers, accountants, nurses, carpenters and the kid next door.
Remember their names -- Tom, Henry, Jim, Mary, Walt, and Aunt Sally.
Remember where they gave so much -- Guadalcanal, Antietam, Lexington, the Chosin Reservoir, San Juan Hill, Belleau Wood, Hamburger Hill, Fallujah and a thousand others.
Remember the laughter and happiness when they were with us.
Remember the tears when they left. So many tears.