My Dad was a very patriotic man, he was a proud Veteran. There wasn't a Memorial Day, Fourth of July or Veteran's Day that went by that we we weren't reminded to stop, remember and recognize our Freedom and especially those who served and died for this incredible right we have.
During our growing up, he was the leader in the neighborhood Fourth of July Day Parade. He'd walk out front and all the neighborhood kids on their red-white-and-blue decorated bikes would follow closely behind around the block singing "It's a Grand old Flag" and other such patriotic tunes. When the military representatives would sit outside the local grocery store looking for a donation in exchange for the little flower we always stopped...the very small price we paid for our freedom, these men had given so much more.
My son was the first grandchild. He and my Dad were very close. Since my Dad wasn't in the best of health, my son and I spent a lot of time visiting his VA doctors and the VA hospital with him. His last weeks were spent in a VA Hospital. They took very good care of him. We now have another reason to be so thankful to this country. They cared for my Dad and my kids' "Pa".
When he died there were military representatives at the graveyard. It was a very powerful and emotional moment as they folded the flag above the casket and handed it to my brother. I had never experienced this military tradition and it's a moment I will never forget. He would have been standing extra tall that day, bursting with pride.
So I am proud to say that if you ask my children what Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Veteran's Day mean they will not tell you the beginning of Summer, Fireworks or a day off school.
I did not ask him to put his hand on his heart...he did that all on his own...
The Daily Frame : January 9 2015