Expect the unexpected, and I was expecting the “gift” of an inspirational moment for a “Memorial Day” tribute to express my personal gratitude, to the men and women who we “honor” on this day of remembrance. “How The Many Faces Of Memorial Day Were Honored By The Universal Gift Of Clouds” is a significant gift for me, simply because I am a veteran myself, and just like the two pictures depict the faces of those we honor keep changing, the meaning of the sacrifice made remains the same.
Changing Faces: The two pictures were taken approximately 60 seconds apart, and in that short time frame, the “faces” of the “clouds” had begun to undergo change. What has not changed for me, is the understanding of one of the best visual explanations of what “Memorial Day” is about. As an individual, this is what I see in the “clouds” what you may or may not see is an individual choice. But make no mistake it was an “individual” who made the ultimate “sacrifice”. When I first wrote this article, on May 26th, 2013, I failed to mention a group that is often forgotten about on this Day we Honor Our fallen Veterans. It is the group that did come home from the battlefield. They may not have been killed outright, in a firefight, or tripped the trip the trigger mechanism, of “waste cutter” or been killed as a chopper went down. No, it was more silent and sinister than that, they were “dead on arrival” but did not know it yet, slowly killed by “friendly fire.” Over the years, I along with others, have lost fellow Veterans, family and friends, to all types of Cancers, Strokes, and many other life ending disorders, because what was sold to us as “safe” and would not have any sided effects for those who inhaled, had it penetrate through the skin or by various methods, enter our bloodstreams. “Agent Orange” and after years of denial and bureaucratic stall tactics, the Government and Veterans Administration, had to concede that “Agent Orange” was indeed linked to the deaths of thousands of Veterans, those who risked it all, and ultimately, gave it all. Each day as 22 Veterans take their own lives, and that is low number. Many of us suffer from Postrumatic Stress, which manifest’s it’s sinister head as Depression. As the wait times grow, I was sickend and appalled, by the head of the VA compairing the wait to standing inline to get into a Disney Theme Park. He states without blinking an eye, that once you get there we will enjoy the ride. What he refrained to admit, that many of us died waiting in line, I can’t rationally comprehend a statement like that.
Memorial Day is to Honor Our Fallen, and on this Memorial Day, I choose to remind us all, that when you and I see Our Flag flying so proudly in the wind, it’s not the wind that makes it fly so proudly, it’s the last Breath Of Those that Gave It All That Makes Our Flag, the symbol of our Freedom, a poignant reminder, of what it takes, to make Old Glory Fly.
The Gift: What I see in the “clouds” is this. I see what appear to be “faces” looking upward and the faces are illuminated by the light of the sun going down. It appears that each face has a mouth and that each mouth is exhaling a breath. Look just below the “clouds” and what do we see, yes it’s the symbol of our freedom our “flag” and what is making our flag wave so freely in the air? The last breath of the ones we honor this day, and for me that’s “How The Many Faces Of Memorial Day Were Honored By The Universal Gift Of Clouds.”