Posts Tagged ‘veterans’

Memorial Day 2010

Sunday May 30, 2010

Dedicated to the memories of two men who exhibited unparalleled courage and dignity.  Finer men I never knew.

Uncle Bob Grundtvig (1931-2009), USN, an inspiration to all who knew him.

My dearest friend, Mike McLaughlin (1945-2008), USMC, who proved the adage: once a Marine, always a Marine.

May God Bless you both, your comrades in arms, and your loving families.

CBS Sunday Morning ran a piece this morning about the Van Doren family of Clyde, Ohio.

When the Van Doren brothers returned from World War II they volunteered to place flags on Veteran’s graves near their home in Clyde, Ohio. They had no idea this would become a tradition carried out by Van Dorens for years to come. 1

This year, three generations from the family placed over 1,200 U.S. flags at veteran’s graves from the Civil War to the recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.  As flags are set, they pause briefly to announce each fallen hero’s name with due reverence.  The leader of this year’s crew was seven years old when he first participated in the ritual. My favorite segment was him being asked, “Are you obligated to do this” and his response: “It is a privilege.” 2

Watching this story, including the very young grandchildren learning the same values through participation, brought forth the emotion that accompanies indescribable gratitude.  I have deep appreciation every day, but especially this weekend, for all those who served and their families — more than ever for those who gave their lives on my behalf.


  1. Direct link may not lead where expected after this week, because it inexplicably leads to URL containing “1998/07/19.”
  2. Quotes from memory, not verbatim, but accurately capture the sentiment.

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