Guest Post by My Own Sweet Mom, Loretta, about my Grandpa
Patriotism - the love of one’s country. This is a word that I have learned only thru “my father’s eyes”.
My Dad served this country twice during the Korean War as a marine. He survived, but many of his friends did not. He did not survive without scars, lasting lifetime scars. But that has never made him waiver in his devotion to America. I can honestly say that my Dad loves this country. He believes in this country, and I know he would die for this country. For me it is hard to understand his devotion. This country has let him down many times. But he keeps on believing in the power of one person’s ability to make a difference.
Just as a waterfall begins with one drop of water – my Dad wants to be that one drop. He raises his flag proudly every Memorial Day, every July 4th, every Labor day as well as the other 362 days of the year. He is now 82 years old and is as busy as ever fighting for and serving this country. This past Memorial Day he spent the day placing flags at the cemetery on the graves of those who have served this country. He picks up trash in the area surrounding his neighborhood monthly only because he is proud of his community. He walks the neighborhoods reminding people to vote. He was a signal inspector for the Santa Fe railroad for 43 years, and is still watching out for safety issues with different signal stops in the city he lives in. He is a proud member of the Tea Party, attends every meeting, every rally, every parade – whether your politics agree or disagree with the Tea Party is not the point. He is serving the best way he knows how, he is standing up for what he believes in and he is still trying to make a difference.
My dad is still trying to be that one drop of water. His age does not stop him. I cannot sing the national anthem without tearing up and thinking of my Dad. Remembering how much he and so many like him have sacrificed – all for Patriotism. In 2007, my sister, brother and I took my Dad to visit Washington D.C. Experiencing that with my Dad was a memory I will always cherish. Seeing the history thru his eyes and his emotions stirred my soul.
I believe now that in order to have that kind of love and devotion, sacrifice has to come first. You can only love what you believe in and fight for. As we celebrate America’s Independence Day, I hope we can all see this day thru the eyes of those who have given so much. A gift of freedom, from those who have loved much, sacrificed greatly, from those who know the true meaning of Patriotism, from those who want to make a difference.
May God bless the men and women who have made a difference.
What does patriotism mean to you???