Archive for the ‘Veteran's Day’ Tag

Its Veteran’s Day, 2022   2 comments

Sgt. 1st Class Lance Amsden, platoon sergeant for the 1st Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne),
25th Infantry Division, watches as CH-47 Chinook Helicopters circle above during a dust storm at Forward Operating Base Kushamond, Afghanistan, July 17,
during preparation for an air-assault mission.
— Army Flickr Stream

On this Veteran’s Day, in honor of those who served and died, I share this song written and recorded by Tom Russell, which was also recorded by Johnny Cash.

One of the blogs I follow is So Far From Heaven.  Old Jules writes about his old running buddy, Phil:

“I hadn’t thought about my old running buddy, Phil, for a while. That last blog entry got me chewing on thoughts of him. I’ll tell you a bit more about him.

Phil went to the Marine Corps as the result of being a 17-year-old driving from Temple, Texas, to Austin with a case of beer in the car. A Williamson County Sheriff’s Deputy stopped him on a tail light violation, asked for his driver’s license, and saw the case of beer. Old Phil, being a clever youth, gave the officer a Texas Drivers License with an altered date of birth so’s to keep from being arrested as a minor in possession of alcoholic beverages.”

Veteran’s Day

Well I used to hang out down at the VFW hall
And stare at the photographs up on the wall
Of the neighborhood boys that died
in the wars we’ve been through
And the hand lettered sign that said
remember Jimmy McGrew
Well Jimmy went to Nam back in 1965
But there’s a lot of men here that think
Jimmy McGrew’s still alive
Though they carved his name
on a stone in Washington DC
His brother said that stone
don’t prove a thing to me

It’s veteran’s day and the skies are gray
Leave the uniforms home cause
there ain’t gonna be a parade
But we’ll fill up a glass for the ones
that didn’t make it through
And leave a light in the window tonight
for Jimmy McGrew

Well I used to hang out down at the VFW hall
And stare at the photographs up on the wall
Of the neighborhood boys that died
in the wars we’ve been through
And the hand lettered sign that said
remember Jimmy McGrew
Well Jimmy went to Nam back in 1965
But there’s a lot of men here that think
Jimmy McGrew’s still alive
Though they carved his name
on a stone in Washington DC
His brother said that stone
don’t prove a thing to me

It’s veteran’s day and the skies are gray
Leave the uniforms home cause
there ain’t gonna be a parade
But we’ll fill up a glass for the ones
that didn’t make it through
And leave a light in the window tonight
for Jimmy McGrew

— Tom Russell

On This Veterans Day, “Say, ‘Hello In There'”   Leave a comment

David Fitzsimmons — Arizona Daily Star
 
You know that old trees just grow stronger
And old rivers grow wilder every day
Old people just grow lonesome
Waiting for someone to say, “Hello in there, hello”
 
So if you’re walking down the street sometime
And spot some hollow ancient eyes
Please don’t just pass ’em by and stare
As if you didn’t care, say, “Hello in there, hello”
 
— from Hello In There by John Prine
 

As a Veteran and an old person in general, I’m trying hard not just to fade away — “Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.”
Like many people my age, we are familiar with the line in General Douglas MacArthur April 19, 1951 farewell address to
the U.S. Congress. A great line for a General but not for older people. I, for one, am not ready to just fade away.

As older people, we experience daily the looks of people we may come in contact with, and in their eyes, 
we have already faded away — they stare straight through us. In the last decade, I have seen more doctors 
than in the total of my eighty years, and just once, I would like, “Hello in there, hello.”

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