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By Chaplain R.C. Lewis

I assume Memorial Day is personal for everyone but for me it began with a trip to the cemetery about 2nd or 3rd grade. It was probably way before that but that is my first memory, we were there to tend to Grandma Mary Jane's resting place. I can kind of remember the site marker and pulling weeds, raking and making the grave site look clean. The last time there,  was as a teenager with my paternal Grandfather Robert H. Lewis (WW-I Veteran), Mary Jane was his mother.

Now it is many relatives including my Father a U.S. Navy Veteran, Pearl Harbor survivor (7 Dec. 1941) and numerous other pacific naval battles during WWII. Robert Rolf Lewis, Sept. 29, 1919 - Sept. 24, 1992. R.I.P.

I will mention here another personal connection; I remember Kenny from the 1st day of school, I chose a seat near Billy, because my mother and his mother spoke to each other outside of school when dropping us off for our 1st day of class, Kenny was across the isle. At the end of the day they lined us up by the color of paper that our names were on, pined to our shirts early that morning. Billy, Kenny & I where in the same line, same color of name tag and they marched us onto the same big yellow school bus. The next morning when I got on the same big yellow bus I saw Kenny's face about half way back by himself, I plopped down next to him. Three stops later Billy came up the steps of the buss and slid in text to us. That went on every school day until one us got a drivers license in high school. Kenny had a black & silver 1957 Chevy coupe, man was he cool ! From 1st grade to graduation.

Kenneth A Butler, Jr.: (Oct. 1947) SP4 - E4 - U.S. Army, Americal Div. Killed in Combat In QUANG TIN, SOUTH VIETNAM on Jul 23, 1968. ( Panel 51W - Line 38 )

Paul T. Schimpf: Petty Officer 1st Class (E-6) Killed in the line of duty, crushed by heavy 30ft. seas during a Typhoon on 26 Oct. 1968 on board U.S. Naval Destroyer, USS Braine, DD-630. (A shipmate)

David King of united kingdom's of Iseal. (c.1040 - c.970 BCE)   How eloquent a eulogy by David in His Lament for "Saul and Jonathan."

"Saul and Jonathan, beloved and pleasant in their life, And in their death they were not parted; They were swifter than eagles, They were stronger than lions... How have the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle!" 2 Sam. 1:23-27 (NASB)

May we never forget.

Amen.

 

"It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived."  -  George S. Patton

¹Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/g/georgespa124797.html#GDgmQs3T4Va5jvL0.99

 

© R. C. B. Lewis; 2012-14       All rights reserved.

Article I, Section 8, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution accords Congress the power “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” Reciprocity and the Creation of Sui-Generis-Type Intellectual Property Rights for New Forms of Technology’ [2003] 6(6) The Journal of World Intellectual Property 827-859, ISSN: 1422-2213

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Comments

  • Quite a story. I have a nephew Army Chaplain -- number of tours in Afghanistan, served in Iraqi and other country locations he seems unable to divulge. He is a good fellow.

    I watched military movies, documentaries from WWII, Korea, Vietnam and ME and ate chilli dogs and apple pie yesterday. All the while enjoying the eats I was grateful and very aware that I was allowed  this very American meal by the sacrifices of others.

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Robert Hutchinson, USACIDC (Ret.)

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