26 May 2013


by Andy Weddington
Memorial Day 2013

"On what rests the hope of the republic? One country, one language, one flag!" Alexander Henry

All men are created equal.

But it's what men and women do that distinguishes them, that upsets that equality. 

On Memorial Day America recognizes our honorable, our courageous, our committed countrymen - those on the extraordinary side of the equation; that can never be balanced - who died while in uniform.

To them (as to all who have selflessly served), our flag summoned her servants. And they dutifully obeyed.

Eight years ago, surrounded by Marines, Sailors, and their families, during a patriotic fireworks show - "bombs" bursting in air - our flag, waving in the foreground, caught my eye.

The next day I painted that heart-swelling sight - from memory. That painting, in my possession still, has never made public display. Now it's appropriate.

'Colors - Bombs Bursting in Air' 
Oil on Canvas 18 x 24 inches
All men are created equal.

Then some men and women prove they are anything but equal - though they'd never make such a claim. 

The chasm between saying and doing is enormous - in span and depth. And noteworthy.

For our respect and thanks they've earned. 

So, sometime on Memorial Day, pause to remember the extraordinary cost of freedom - the giants who walked amongst us; those who conquered the chasm; those who asked for nothing in return.

Now and forever it's upon the shoulders of each new generation of American to follow their ancestor's lead - to dutifully obey our flag's summons, her call to service. Otherwise, Americans will one day be but a memory - of a different breed, a rare breed. And our United States lost.

Post Script

Remembering James E. Hurst, Recruit, USMC - died Saturday morning, 01 October 1983, during training aboard U. S. Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina.


No comments: