“VIEW from the BRIDGE”
Since I just returned from West Point, New York early Monday morning, I am having a high on patriotism. Wally’s grandson, Morgan Wood who is Venetta Morger and John Wood’s son, graduated on Saturday the 21st. I have never been to West Point before and the history there is deep seeded. Our American tradition of Memorial Day includes an obligation to honor the sacrifices made by our nation to earn our freedom. To see over one thousand young men who are willing to make sacrifices for their country is overwhelming.
I did a bit of research on my computer and came up with the following. A woman named Nora Fontaine Davidson was credited with the first Memorial Day Ceremony in Petersburg, Virginia. She was a schoolteacher for 59 years. In 1861, she headed fund raising projects to buy equipment for soldiers.
When the Confederate Hospital was established at Poplar Lawn, she volunteered until the end of the war. She and other charter members of the Petersburg Ladies Memorial Association, which was organized on May 6 1866, took as their objective reburial of Confederate soldiers who fell on battlefields and were buried there.
Mary Logan, the wife of Union General John A. Logan, observed Nora Davidson and students putting flowers and tiny Confederate flags on the graves of soldiers. When she returned to Washington, D.C., she related the story to her husband. General Logan, now the first Commander of the Grand Army of the Republic issued on order, establishing a National Decoration Day, which was later passed by Congress.
I mentioned a few weeks ago about flying an American flag. It is a constant reminder of our love of country and of our troops. I am very unhappy when I see the flag at the post office flying at half-mast. It means that another Montana boy as made the ultimate sacrifice.
Make the Memorial ceremony at The Old Bridge a part of your family celebration day. There is usually a large crowd attending but I would like to see an even larger crowd. Bring your children so they may learn how great it is to be an American. Let them learn to say “thank you for your service,” when they see someone in uniform. We never can thank them enough.
At the airport last Thursday, we witnessed the “Homecoming” of a group of troops returning from duty. I did not learn where that duty was. There were other troops there with signs that said, “Welcome Home.” The thing that tugged at my heart the most was the sight of two little girls, (perhaps three and five years old,) hugging their daddy. He was trying to hold and kiss his wife while the girls clung to his legs. I will never forget that picture. I have seen such scenes on TV but never up close and personal. God bless our Troops.
I would just add one saying by Lee Greenwood. “And I’m proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free. And I won’t forget the men who died, who gave that right to me.”
I was sorry to miss this event last Saturday. It was a very successful day for the Cancer Support Group as they made $600.00. Many people contributed plants and just as many purchased. This will be an annual event. I give lots of Kudos to the Cancer Support Group for the help they give to cancer patients. They are a blessing to our community.
LAMP SHADE AUCTION
This fundraiser had to be cancelled on Sunday because of the weather. You would not want to expose those beautiful shades to the rain. The auction will take place during Summer Celebration. Mentioning that celebration brings to mind that it is only four weeks away. Get your phones a-working and invite everyone you know. It is going to be a great one.
FORT BENTON SOCIAL CALENDAR
I have no idea what is going on this week. Being out of town for a few days has put me out of touch and I have not heard from anyone. If you have events, please get in touch a couple of weeks ahead of time. I will try to get the word out.
CARTER SOCIAL CALENDAR
The Carter Methodist Church is planning several events. They are a Rummage Sale on Saturday June 4th, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Carter Community Hall. There will be included a Bake Sale and a Lunch Concession. They would like you to come, shop, and eat. There will be homemade pies and goodies.
A Vacation Bible School begins June 13th through June 17th from 9:00 a.m. to noon. You may pre-register by calling 264-5733 .
The children will conduct the Sunday service on June 19th. Following the service there will be a Community BBQ at the Carter Hall and everyone is welcome. Bring a Pot Luck dish. I say, “This event is what makes Montana unique. It’s down home country.”
The Church Women’s Group is compiling a Cookbook. They are collecting recipes from anyone in the area who would like to be included. Emy Rominger is compiler of the recipes, so send your favorites to her at 444 Rominger Lane, Floweree, MT 59440.
Get your horse and carriages, (named Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler,) packed up and head on over to Carter. It will be great family fun.
I am very attached to following saying. “Practice Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty.” I read a story about it in a “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book. In the book someone read it on the side of a building, liked it, repeated it, and somehow it spread across the country.
Today in the Price Rite grocery story, I witnessed it. The man ahead of me in the checkout line was asking the clerk where he could buy a backpack. He had a bag full of groceries. The story went like this. He had picked up a hitchhiker who was traveling to North Dakota by “thumb.” He told the unknown man in front of me in the checkout line that he was going to see his family. The unknown man had purchased food for the hitchhiker and wanted a backpack to be used as a food container.
The man disappeared out the door before I got the whole story. It was a great one about practicing random kindness and a senseless act of beauty. It was too late for me to offer some sort of food for this stranger but he was taken care of by the unknown man. I do not know who he is, if he lives in Fort Benton, or is a stranger himself just passing through. However, I do know that there are kind people amongst us. Whoever you are, you made my day.
SO LONG FOR NOW
Have a great Memorial Day weekend. Drive carefully and watch out for the other driver if you are traveling. If you are staying home, enjoy some fun time. Take time off from work just for a little while.
GOD BLESS AMERICA, GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS, AND GOD BLESS YOU.