The Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions." --American Statesman Daniel Webster (1782-1852)

Saturday, December 14, 2019

Did a good thing today.

Well I am doing this post and watching the Army/Navy Game, looks like Navy will win...Dang....Oh Well.

    Today My son and I participated again with "Wreaths Across America".  Normally I would have rode with the "Patriots Guard Riders", but with the weather being iffy and my motorcycle being surrounded by Christmas stuff, We just took my sons Truck.

Before we hit the road, we stopped by our favorite place,  The great Krasnovian Franchise.  We left and headed down the road.  It took a couple of hours but we got here..

The Main Marker at the Gate.

It was cold, dreary and cloudy when we got there, but when the service started the Sun came out and the sky cleared up.
The Service started, and after the National Anthem followed by "Taps" and several speeches by various VFW and Patriot Guard leaders, they had a person representing each branch present a wreath.
My Dad representing the Army laying the Wreath at the Memorial.
After the ceremony everyone headed to distribution points to start laying the Wreaths on the headstone of a veteran.

And we spread out laying Wreaths on the Headstones...
We kept going until every headstone, got a Wreath...
This was one of several sections.

 A Soldier from "My War".
My Dad, My Brother and my Son, it truly was a family affair.  My Niece was also present as was my Aunt and her husband who was a Squid Navy Veteran off the U.S.S Yorktown.

 My Uncle Don, My Dad and My Son.

 She asked me if my son was planning on going into the Service.  I replied "I am torn, part of me wants him to join, to pay his obligation as citizen of the Republic, and  to serve.  Part of me says, "no" my family had paid the debt since the revolutionary war, and if it skips a generation, it isn't a bad thing and I will not force him either way."  She seemed to agree with the sentiment.

BTW, Navy did win the CinC cup...This year.  But this is one game that everyone wins.  We all represent the United States.



  1. I too, participated in Wreaths Across America today. My event was at The Massachusetts Veterans' Memorial Cemetery in Agawam, MA and was with The Patriot Guard Riders. Due to the nasty weather conditions, no one was on a bike. Ahead of the event, I sponsored the purchase of five wreaths and a $3.00 optional admin cost charge. I choose that cemetery because my parents, uncle and aunt, and another cousin are interred there. Here is how my day went.

    Up at 05:00 to get showered and dressed and out the door by 06:00. At that cemetery, we always meet at the Dunkin' Donuts on RT. 159 north of the cemetery about a mile. I got there right on time and joined everyone for coffee and breakfast. We pulled out at 07:50 sharp with a police escort to the cemetery, where the PGR had priority parking for every vehicle. The civilian volunteers were bused in from the Six Flags amusement park a little ways away. I was shocked and pleasantly surprised at the few hundred volunteers that showed up in the absolutely dismal weather. There were 8,000 wreaths to be placed. At 10:00 we had the HUGE flag line in place for the opening ceremonies, and it looked great. When the ceremony was over and the flag line broke, I hoofed it up the hill almost 1/2 mile to my parent's grave, hoping there was no wreath there yet. Lucky me, I got to place it and in a loud clear voice spoke my father's name and rank, then rendered a salute. I then laid a shiny 2019 penny on top of the stone to signify to everyone I had been there. I went back and grabbed another to lay on a random grave. This one belonged to PFC Leonard R. Bean, a WWII Army veteran and Purple Heart Recipient. Here is his info: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/51116277/leonard-r_-bean I then humped back down the hill to the very first section that opened for burials to check my uncle's grave. His grave is only three rows back from the road, and sure enough, a wreath was there. Well, I snapped to attention, called out his name and rank then rendered a salute anyway, leaving another shiny 2019 penny behind. The last one was for my cousin Brien, who is in one of the columbariums for cremated remains. The compartments are four high in a column. We were instructed to leave one wreath at the base of the column, and recite all four names. His column did not yet have a wreath, so I once again laid a wreath and said the names, ending with a salute. All of a sudden, all the wreaths were gone, and the placing was finished in less than an hour. Unfortunately, all the civilians hopped on the buses and left before the nationwide noon-time ceremony that we were going to be part of with the PGR. We assembled the flag line once again, and stood for the ceremonies that lasted almost a halh an hour. With that, we were done. But I had one more thing to do.

    My uncle Bill is not buried there with my Dad and his older brother. He is buried in a public cemetery about 15 miles away, and was an Army veteran of the Korean War that served in theater. I "procured" one of the leftover wreaths and brought it to the other cemetery. The cemetery is closed to vehicle traffic for the winter, so I had to slog through the slush to get to his grave. I was the only person in the whole place. His stone is set at ground level, so I spent a few moments clearing the snow away. I laid the wreath on top, spoke his name, and saluted. I then drove to my aunt's house (his widow) a few miles away to tell her what I did. She was so happy. I hadn't seen her in a while and since she just made lunch, I got fed and had a good time hanging with her for a while. My cousin Maria lives with her, and took time out from her studies to join us in the kitchen during lunch. What a great end to a special day.

    I will also have this story on my blog at https://tfbel.blogspot.com

  2. I just wanted to thank everyone who participated in this ceremony today. When I think of the many military heroes who served and were unable to be at home with their loved ones at Christmas time, and now the laying of these wreaths can perhaps serve as a tiny bit of a reminder to their memory that though not at home they were most certainly not forgotten.
    I have a son who is on terminal leave from the Navy, having served over 6 and a half years, and who flew back from the middle east, just a couple of months ago, along with a few of his fleets short timers. They were all members of the USS Abraham Lincoln's carrier group, who is trying to keep a lid on the Iranians. My son told me that it is tense over there. We came within 10 minutes of launching missiles at Iran, before our president called it off. The Iranians are a very real threat. I am just so grateful that we have a president who is no afraid to keep us safe.
    Again, thank you to those who laid wreaths today, and also to those who served.


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