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Just a Thought

I woke up on Memorial Day with the intent to attend our community's Memorial Day parade and ceremony that my daughter was taking part in as a member of the middle school band.

Just prior to going, I read a post on Facebook from my cousin's husband Christopher, a veteran who served on the front lines during the war in Iraq and is now serving his community as a police officer. Christopher was actually traveling cross country on his motorcycle with friends this Memorial Day but took the time to post a request; if everyone in the family could stop what they're doing at 3 p.m. and take part in a moment of silence to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country as well as any other veterans we might know. Christopher said he would be riding somewhere in New Mexico at that time, but planned to pull over for his moment of silence. My husband and I thought, sure, of course we'll do that.

Not long after that, we walked to the center of town for the parade and the ceremony to follow. The main speaker at the ceremony was a local resident I'd met several times at church. I knew he was a veteran and served in the Air Force. He initially began speaking about his background in military and the time he served. After a few minutes, his speech then changed tone as he spoke about his friend named LeRoy Holmer whom he met when both were attending the United States Air Force Academy. LeRoy would go on to serve in the Gulf War and then eventually became a pilot for an air line. Then he spoke about the morning LeRoy co-piloted a commercial flight, United Airlines Flight 93 on September 11, which tragically crashed in a field near Shanksville Penn. after being taken over by terrorists. It was a somber moment for everyone listening.

After the ceremony, we walked home and went about our day. However, when 3 o'clock came, I shut the Red Sox game off, took a moment to reflect on the day, and silently thank all the veterans in my life; my late father, my father in law, and Christopher. And although I never met him, I thought about and thanked LeRoy Holmer in that moment too. They say it's so important to thank a veteran, especially on a day like Memorial Day, and somehow I'm hoping LeRoy heard mine.




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