Tag Archives: Memorial Day

Giving Thanks to Our War Heroes

The flag panel partially obstructs the Remembrance Tower.

The flag panel partially obstructs the Remembrance Tower.

Ever since last September when I saw that an unusual-looking building had been finished in our nearby Memorial Park, I’ve wanted to check it out.

Yesterday being part of Memorial Day weekend seemed like the perfect opportunity to drive over with the Mister and finally view the Sugar Land Veterans Memorial.

The Mister is dwarfed by the Remembrance Tower.

The Mister is dwarfed by the Remembrance Tower.

There’s a much-bigger, better-known Memorial Park in Houston, but that doesn’t make our smaller version any less meaningful. Especially now that there’s a true memorial along the mile-long, crushed-granite path that surrounds a manmade lake.

The Army insignia

The Army symbol

The memorial is guarded by a concrete flag panel, which serves as a gateway to the 50-foot, pentagonal tower. Each wall features a branch of the military, with its insignia in the nearby sidewalk.

While the outside of the tower looks impressive, it’s what’s inside that truly matters. The entrance is on the lakeside, away from the potential hustle and bustle of the walking path. I was equally jarred by the imposing quiet and the names etched into four of the five panels (none from the U.S. Coast Guard), those from our small community who gave the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country.

#7832-(marine-names)U.S. Marine Corps

#2397-(army-names)U.S. Army

#2399-(navy-names)U.S. Navy

#2400-(air-force-names)U.S. Air Force

I silently prayed for these brave men and their families, as I hoped that our Veterans Memorial never fills up with names.

Every time I pass by the stark flag and building, I’ll always remember that freedom is not free.

Memorial Day

A permanent American flag is a welcome addition to the memorial.

Today we give thanks to the servicemen and women who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we can live free. Our gratitude is everlasting.

Two years ago, Garrett Gamble died in Afghanistan.

Especially for those who died in action from my small community. Thank you, Lance Cpl. Garrett Gamble.

Let Us Not Forget

A small park in our community honors one of our own.

Today is so much more than the unofficial start of summer. On this Memorial Day, let us take a few moments to remember the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we can be free.

The wind blows the small American flags near the sign.

My walk this morning took me to my community’s little park that is named in honor of Lance Cpl. Garrett Gamble, who died a year ago in Afghanistan. I stood in front of the park’s sign and thought about how this brave, young, local hero was taken from his loving family much too soon. Thank you, Garrett. Rest in peace.

A Day to Remember

A makeshift memorial

Today we remember with gratitude our servicemen and women who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we can live in freedom. We will never forget you!

Tie-Dye Fun


The #1 son holds up his chemistry experiment.

The #1 son holds up his chemistry experiment.

My favorite part of high school is that almost all busy work is done in school. Unlike elementary school, especially, when parents (where “parents” = mom) have to be hands-on with lots of things. Like science and history projects.

As I was basking in the glow of rarely having to help the #1 son, who is finishing up his high school junior year, he handed me a large Ziploc bag with a wet, colorful mess inside and an ominous note filled with instructions attached to it. It was his chemistry project, the infamous tie-dyed shirt. Time to stop surfing the net and help my son turn that mess into something he can wear to school tomorrow.

#1 had done the hard part, which was the most fun: Tie-dying the shirt in no discernible pattern during class. It was up to us to provide the finishing touches.

#1 son: “We need a bucket to rinse my shirt.”

Me: “Your dear brother broke the bucket.”

Sidebar: The #2 son has a penchant for breaking things. Well, him and “Ida Know,” as in “Ida Know who broke it.” That’s what #2 son said when I found a cracked picture frame. I guess Ida Know also throws balls and discs inside the house.

I needed to pick up a prescription for the Mister at our local CVS and figured I’d find a bucket there. Here’s what I bought:

Will the shovel come in handy?

Will the shovel come in handy?

I brought it home. The #1 son groaned. Guess it was a little too small. We looked in the garage and found a styrofoam cooler that, of course, had a crack in it. Wonder what #2 was using it for when he no doubt broke it. But it held enough water, so we were in business.

The process of setting the dye including numerous rinsing and wringing out of the t-shirt. I handled the hose and the camera (my Nikon D300 with the versatile Nikon 17-55mm lens), while #1 took care of his shirt.

First rinse—colorful water

First rinse—colorful water

A dripping, colorful mess

A dripping, bright mess

The second rinse

The second rinse

The water is almost clear!

The water is almost clear!

The #1 son is proud of his work.

The #1 son is proud of his work.

After the shirt was rinsed out, it went into the washing machine (by itself in hot water with a squirt of dishwashing liquid) and then into the dryer. And that’s it for #1’s chemistry experiment!

Of course, that wasn’t the end of my experiment. I became intrigued by the water coming out of the hose and just had to snap a photo. This was at a shutter speed of 1600 with an aperture of f/2.8 (200 ISO):

My very own waterfall

My very own waterfall

Not very colorful but still very cool!

In memoriam


We are humbled by the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice while in service to our country so that we can live free.