Monday, September 12, 2011

Always remember

South Orangetown Ceremony Flag
Yesterday was a long, periodically tough day.  I sang at 2 memorial services for 9-11, attended a third and made an appearance at a local college writing letters to Sarge's unit.  I was continually reminded of how much positive community activity has come from this tragedy.  10 years ago I was living in NC, teaching high school chorus when I found out what was happening in NY.  I think of it as the day I became a true "grown-up."  I was so far away and it really hit home how much of a New Yorker I truly am.

I started my day in Haverstraw and sang first, thank goodness.  That ceremony was pretty much a tear-fest from that moment on.  I recovered myself with a trip to the deli to see some of our friends before heading over to the Orangetown ceremony where I got just be "the wife" and observe and listen.  There were some true and heartfelt words that, again, brought me to tears.

My sister saved the day with a phone call at 1.  We went for a short walk (15 minutes is my limit) and then had lunch at Noonan's.  Yummy burgers and beer make for smiles and a little recovery from all the sadness.  Katie is awesome!

STAC students
My final 2 stops were less emotional, I think I was just wrung out by that time.  The stop at STAC to visit the college students writing to the unit was really positive.  The unit needs those notes and letters to keep them intact emotionally as was pointed out by the friend of ours who helped organize the drive.  (Thanks Jim!)

The Clarkstown ceremony was very formal.  Their Honor Guard is TIGHT.  I was impressed with the drill and ceremony...and I'm getting to be a good observer, though I don't think I could ever successfully do it.   Hudson Voices sang again and I think it went pretty well.  I know I was more together than I was during the morning's ceremony.

For those reading, keep writing.  Our soldiers need to hear from us, even if they don't have the time to write back.  They get our notes and it helps them get through another day.  Sarge recently compared their lives to the movie "Groundhog Day" where each day is exactly like the first.  Write and remind your soldier that there is life outside their base and routines.  They will appreciate it!

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