Parades, potato salad, picnics
Fireworks and fun.
Heralding the beginning of summer, and if lucky...sticking our toes into the ocean's oh so cold water.
Sometimes we forget what it's really all about.
Sometimes we forget this.
So many gravestones, and all too often, so many forgotten faces.
Not this one.
Anthony Banach was the uncle I never met. Dad tells me that Anthony was always smiling...always up to something...the brother that dad adored.
These brothers both joined the navy; dad had not yet graduated. They ended up on separate destroyers, and just a few weeks before Anthony's death, managed to spend a few days together somewhere out in the Pacific.
Anthony shouldn't have died; a friend wasn't feeling well that day. Anthony took his place.
The kamikaze plane shone bright against the sky, clearly visible.
Anthony remained at his station anyway.
I really wish I'd known this man; I can only hope to have his courage.
So, we didn't head towards the beach; instead we headed north to a tiny sleepy cemetary in a town that boasts one red light.
We planted flowers at the graves, including red, white, and blue ones at Anthony's.
Pink and whte ones at mom's and my grandparents'.
I know it sounds strange, but we had a good time. Stories were told; memories flooded the air. We laughed a lot. Phil took the pictures for me, and then, he and dad retired to a nearby bench to "supervise."
We spent nearly as much time in the car as we did visiting dad. Still, I wouldn't have missed this for the world.
Anthony needs someone to tell his story.
Dad needs to tell his.
I needed to connect with people I never really knew.
I'm glad I did so; I really am.