CharlieMC (charliemc) wrote,

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Memorial Day -- Remembering...

I do want to mention that Memorial Day is special for us, aside from work...

Especially this year!

I spoke to Jim Willis at the Oregon Department of Veteran's Affairs this past Friday. He's working on a project for Marilyn mistressmarilyn and me...

We need the number of the fallen for the state of Oregon for every war, to add to the GFP script. These will be read off when the Riderless Horse entry passes by.

He's also going to get me actual lists of names for each war, too.

Marilyn wants to take these lists and tape them all together to form one really long list -- then roll it into a scroll and put it into the saddlebag of the Riderless Horse. Isn't that cool?

It's all these little details that are making the Centennial year so special. (And it's Marilyn who tends to think of the little details, by the way!)

It was Marilyn's idea to have a Riderless Horse in the parade -- which I think is very cool. The whole 'Greatest Generation' section of the parade should have people going crazy! The military parade and the wartime queens and princesses getting to ride (all parades were cancelled during WWII, so they didn't get to do this before now) and the Riderless Horse and so on. Veterans from tons of different wars will be there. (I'm excited for the Vietnam vets, who didn't get treated well when they came back from war...)

I wasn't born until long after Dad had come back from his stint in WWII. But I used to ask him about it quite a bit. He was in the (Army) Air Force and was a navigator in bombers. He served in the Pacific and Italy. (His stories about Italy during the war were both fascinating and disturbing.)

After 9-11 we had a Tribute Wall at the festival, down near where the ships dock each year. (The military is always a big part of our festival.) I remember Marilyn and I putting up a red, white and blue placards with Dad's name. We were very proud!

In fact, at Dad's funeral, they did the presentation of the flag to mom -- which is very, very moving! I'll never forget that.

By the way, the certificate from 'a grateful nation' that's signed by the President and sent to the family of all veterans when they die is framed and on constant display in our living room.

It may be corny.

It may be old-fashioned.

By I've always been a flag-waver.

I love the people of the entire world -- and I'm not opposed to 'aliens' (!!!) who live in the U.S. Most people here came from somewhere else to start off, after all! I tend to point that out to people who go on and on about the Hispanics who live here. I'm part American Indian, so I can say my people were here from the beginning -- can they? (grin) Don't get me wrong, my pride in being American doesn't mean I'm anti any other nation or those people -- far from it.

But I don't think there's anything wrong with being proud of who I am and where I come from, either...

Memorial Day isn't Veteran's Day, admittedly. But it is a day to 'remember' those who have passed on -- so it's only natural that we think of our servicemen and women today.

God bless them.

I used to get to do the 'go to the cemetery' thing years ago (before working for the festival). We'd spend much of the day doing it.

I'm related to Virgil Earp. We used to always go to his grave.

Have I ever mentioned that we're related to Etienne Lucier?

This might not seem like a big deal, but Lucier built the first cabin on the east bank of what eventually became the city of Portland (back in 1829).

Of course, I'm also related to Sacagawea, believe it or not... Oh! And I'll gladly tell you how to pronounce her name correctly, if you're interested. (smile)

When you're younger you don't always appreciate these things -- who you're related to, I mean. But it's a big deal to me now, I have to admit.

Back to work!

Tags: 2007, centennial, dads-funeral, etienne-lucier, marilyn, may-2007, memorial-day, riderless-horse, sacagawea

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