Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Veterans Day, Grace Episcopal Church

Photos today from the cemetery of our peaceful little church....

Yesterday, November 10, 2010 was the 235th anniversary of the founding of the Marine Corps.
Our fellow Grace Church parishioner, General Robert Barrow was the 27th Commandant of the Marine Corps.

And to date he is the only Commandant to reject the right to be buried at Arlington.  He was buried in the church cemetery alongside Patsy his wife in November 2008.  Everyone who attended Grace Church will remember his erect posture, gentle kind ways and his slow steady walk up the aisle at church even as he grew weaker in his final months of life.

The Marine Corps birthday tradition includes laying a wreath on the grave of each of the former commandants on November 10th.  Though General Barrow's final resting place is far from Arlington, a military detail is sent to Louisiana for his wreath laying; there was no advance notice last year (the first since his funeral).... they just appeared.  This year, we knew to expect htem and so a few Barrow family members and about 25 friends were present for the ceremony.

The ceremony included a wreath laying,
firing a 21 gun salute and Taps.

I doubt if the Arlington Marine details had crying children!  

The Grace Church preschoolers who were present broke into a long chorus of terrified bawls and wails upon the firing of the salutes.  I think that General Barrow would have loved the contrast.

After the ceremony, there were photographs in the parking lot......

Still remembering the earlier gunfire, the kids took some convincing to get close enough for photos.

Here's another Veteran's gravestone..... he served in the late 1800's.

Look at the detail and the lichen growing on it...

Sword, gun, ammunition bag, belt, hat on top etc....

The top part of the fallen tree has the text of his letter of commendation from the War Department.

And finally a veteran's gravestone, that's more personal....

I brought along some flowers from the garden to put on Daddy/Grandaddy and Mama/Grandma's grave for Veterans Day..... (and yes to those of you with eagle eyes, I still haven't had the date put under Grandma's name)

Though my father rarely spoke of the details of his military service as a pilot in WWII, we all knew how important it was to him.  This is one of the last photos that I have of him where he wasn't so frail that it is hard for me to look back at them.  

This was taken on Christmas Day the year before he died.  He was nauseous and tired but still managed to put on a a coat and tie and come spend the day with us.  Though he normally wouldn't have worn a ball cap indoors, he proudly wore his Fly Navy hat to keep his head warm because of the chemo.

Thanks for serving, Daddy. ..... We all miss you.  


  1. Grace, that was beautiful..I loved seeing a picture of yur Daddy!! Thanks for sharing these. I miss you so much. Love ya Cath


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