The Eagles sang that refrain in "Hotel California," and I was there at Fort Benning, Infantry Officer Basic Course, IOBC-10 at that time. We weren't singing much other than Jody songs for cadence during those weeks in the red Georgia clay.
As you can see we had a few Marines in our class, just to add some spice to the mix. I am in the third row, last on the right, alot younger, thinner and not wiser.
About half of those pictured were severly wounded or died in Vietnam.
Never forget, I haven't.
I would hope so. Have you noticed that the people who stand the tallest when the colors are presented are the oldest vets? I know that they are proud Americans, and that they have long memories of fighting to keep us free. I honor them whenever I meet them. As I am sure you all do too.
Years ago I had the privilege of touring the then new Holocaust Museum in DC with members of the 552nd, Field Artillery Bn. the unit that first freed the camp. I envisioned them not as old men but as young soldiers confronting evil and doing good. I had a chance to meet and speak with at least 30 of them. We bowed our heads in remembrance.
Great photos guys.
anadyr you're so correct. When my best friends (both flew KC-135's) and I (U.S. Arny ATC kid) are at events with the National Anthem being played we are usually the guys standing the tallest at attention during the entire anthem and reminding me exactly why we do.
A Blessed Memorial Day to all the Veteran's with special prayers to all injured and fallen Veteran's and their families.
"Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
On the shore dimly seen thro' the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner: O, long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash'd out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
O, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,
Between their lov'd homes and the war's desolation;
Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land
Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust"
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!"
For those wanting to do something for our veterans consider donating to FIsher House, a nonprofit organization that builds lodging for families or wounded veterans near VA Hospitals. As many of you know 95% of thise wounded in war now have survived, albeit with tremendous injuries, amputations and other serious complications. Families are often unable to be present at their bedsides due to the cost of lodging. Fisher house provides that lodging free of charge for all family members.
So, what better way to honor a veteran than to allow him or her to have loved ones nearby during the time of convalescence?
Please consider this as a worthy charitable deduction.