Gratitude Monday

Veterans Day today in the USA (as well as in other countries, under different names). It is a holiday to celebrate those men and women who have served in the armed services, as well as to commemorate the end of World War I, when the Armistice with Germany was signed on the¬†11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. In typical American fashion, however, the only persons who actually get to celebrate the holiday with time off are bankers and government workers, which of course includes those people most likely to pull stunts most likely to put the lives of our would-be future veterans at risk. But that’s beside the point, and there are 360+ other days of the year to pillory those people.

My dad is a veteran of the US Navy, so today’s gratitude is aimed at him. Lucky for him (and me), he served in that brief period between the Korean and Vietnam “conflicts” where our armed forces weren’t actively engaged in spreading democracy from the trigger of a gun. I don’t know much, but I do know he was on the USS Acme (MSO-508), “an Acme-class minesweeper acquired by the United States Navy for the task of removing mines that had been placed in the water to prevent the safe passage of ships.” Based on when he served (late 50s/early 60s), I’m guessing his service was mostly during the ships Second Far East Deployment. If my dad cares to elaborate, I’ll follow up later.

Screen Shot 2013-11-10 at 1.31.50 PM

There are some other Navy-era pictures of my dad at my folks’ place that I hope to scan one day. He was a good looking guy in his earlier years; who knows what the hell has happened since (just kidding).

Yesterday was also my dad’s birthday. So Happy Birthday and Happy Veterans Day to my dad!

 

Author: Chris

Chris La Tray is a writer, a walker, and a photographer. He lives and travels from Missoula, MT.

6 thoughts on “Gratitude Monday”

  1. Good post. I agree, bankers and government workers get today off. Crazy. “Just” 30 years ago I remembered wondering if we could find a place open to buy some batteries on Christmas day. Now hardly anyone seems closed on the holidays. Retail/business seems to think it can’t afford to miss a day of profits. We used to plan around it, not spend less. And my place of business doesn’t even pay “holiday” pay anymore.
    Anyway, enough ranting about that. Good for your dad. My dad was in the Bataan Death march with his brother, who didn’t survive. Dad spent 3 years in a POW camp in Japan. Made him a bit of an odd duck, I believe. For instance, when he would call us kids from playing for dinner time, he did it in Japanese. He refused to eat rice for years.

    1. Wow, I read a great book on the Bataan Death March. What a harrowing experience. Respect to your dad. As for the holidays . . . yeah, it’s gotten ridiculous. They really don’t exist much anymore.

Leave a Reply