Saturday, December 17, 2016

Wreaths Across America...Cape Cod Location

It was a cold and wet day on the Cape today and many patriotic Americans showed up at the nation's second largest National Cemetery (2nd largest and I didn't know until today!) to lay wreaths in honor of those who have gone before us...those who have donned the uniform to defend the Republic for which we stand...those who died too young an age...and those who's age reflected the battles they fought.  This was our first attendance at such a function so we didn't know what to expect.  There were the guest speakers...some who talked to long, and some who couldn't talk long enough... like the father of a Medal of Honor recipient...  There were official Honor Guards representing various of which fired off their rifles in a 21 gun salute (7 rifles fired 3 times each).  Then came the instructions for all in attendance.
There was 8,000 wreaths available, not nearly enough for the 85,000 buried here, and we randomly picked one of the trucks transporting the wreaths and offloading their cargo at randomly selected sections of the cemetery. It was requested by the organizers that the volunteers laying the wreaths say the name on the headstone and pause for a moment of silence.  Admittingly, I soon forgot this request and spoke to my comrades as if they were still in formation and saluted them, officers and enlisted alike.  I did not know anyone of them personally but they were all personally my buddies. Some even had the same rank and service branch as I...some had memories of my own active duty days...some had my greatest admiration...sorry but I'm at a loss for words now so check out these pictures, they might bring you the words to fill in the blanks:
Freezing Rain

Guest Speaker

Honor Guard

Freedom Riders

Unloading Wreaths

Placing Wreaths at Headstones

Placing Wreaths at Headstones

Same Rank, Same Branch of Service as I

I was still on active duty when this young man was born...
Only the good die young...

First I scraped away the snow to identify...

Then chatted with my new buddy...

Then a final salute and farewell...

A real survivor...

Rest in peace my friends, your wars are over.

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