Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial Day, 2006

Some news stories...

The Boston Globe:
``Sadly, we've had a lot of missions in the Northeast," said Sergeant First Class Harvey Schirrmacher, who heads the Massachusetts chapter of the Patriot Guard Riders. ``I think families should be given this respect and know that they're not alone, and that people do care. Being military, it makes it closer to my heart, too."

Like Schirrmacher, an Army career counselor, some of the 35,000 riders nationwide are either enlisted or are veterans.

But the fast-growing group also includes lifelong civilians and relatives of slain troops who want to show their respects.

The Patriot Guard Riders were formed last year in Kansas to shield families from a fringe group of protesters associated with Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka.
The Chicago Tribune:
"Father Time and Mother Nature are beating the living hell out of us," said Topps, weathered hands holding a group photo of the 758th in his basement.

When the all-black units shipped to war in 1944, their ranks numbered 800 or more, he said. "Out of all of us, I don't think there's 200 left alive."

In Chicago, there had been 30 veterans of the tank battalions. Seven are left. Four meet regularly in Topps' basement, surrounded by banners and photographs depicting their history. A fifth was hurt in a fall a few weeks ago.

Over the Memorial Day weekend, they have agreed to lay a wreath at Oak Woods Cemetery on East 67th Street. Then, likely as not, they'll sit down together to relive stories echoing with humor and heroism.
The Baltmore Sun on a barely remembered Union soldier:
Citizens and local officials opposed to development near the battlefield in the 1980s persuaded the National Park Service to declare the site a National Historic Landmark. The Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority took over maintenance of the cemetery, which is owned by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. That meant that Allen's remains would stay there, standing out as one name among unknowns, at rest on the thin line between being remembered and forgotten.
The blogs...

Black Five honors SGT Rafael Peralta, USMC 4/7/1979 - 11/15/2004.

Law Dawg writes a history of Memorial Day.

As does Maha, but he also includes links to pictures.

The White House veterans page.


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