Thursday, July 23, 2015

Where do you Bury a Veteran?




That question carries a new significance when your US ARMY veteran brother dies.  I have another post about my brother Danny, and he was a vet, you'll see that later, but today we buried him.

Today under a bright blue sky, we buried a US Army tank turret mechanic, in a quiet, quiet place near a river.

Where do you bury a veteran? We buried this vet in the rolling hills of North Georgia, in an area surrounded by the woods in which he grew up. It is a peaceful place not too far from the river that Danny floated so often as a young man, shooting ducks or catching fish. We buried him alongside a few hundred of his fellow veterans in the Veteran’s cemetery.

When our small motorcade bore his body to the funeral site, the two older men who run the place stood at attention with their hats over their hearts in salute.  I cried.

When we arrived at “Committal Site #1” two young Army Reservists in class A uniform stood at attention.  I wept again.

Taps were played, the flag covering the coffin was carefully folded, so very carefully folded. Then it was presented to my youngest brother, also an Army veteran.  Again, tears came.

Then the Army veteran was laid to rest, beneath the soil he had served, alongside his brothers in arms, under those tall trees and near to those native hydrangeas whose blooms were now brown.  Danny was a hero, not in the “special” sense, but in the sense that all who have served in our US armed forces are heroes.  Most volunteered, some were drafted, but all served their fellow man.

I don’t know where to bury a veteran, but I know where to bury a hero:  Section 2, site number 2825, along with a host of other heroes, under those big trees, near that river.

I cry for them, in honor of their sacrifice.

3 comments:

  1. That is really beautiful and touching. I wish I could have been there with you. I'm so sorry you lost your brother.

    ReplyDelete