Saturday, November 11, 2023

Nov 11, 2023~Veterans Day Remembrances

 "Freedom is powerful. It is a gift to be thankful for and to treasure. For those who have protected our nation, for the men and women in uniform, together, we say THANK YOU." 

"Thank you to all our veterans for your courage, strength, and dedication to keeping us safe. We appreciate and honor you today and always!"
Meet Retired US Navy Captain Dr. Lee Anthony. A young 92 yr old gentleman, dressed in full uniform replica of his Father's WWI attire, I was immediately drawn to him. For reasons unknown (other than he reminded me of my Dad), our newly formed friendship was a sealed deal! He noticed me wearing the poppy pendant.
"Young Lady," he began, "Do you know the poem that goes with that pin?" Honestly, I was not sure, but he beamed as he told me the story. Then, standing proud, he recited John McCrae's poem IN FLANDERS FIELDS. With tears trickling down my face, I promised to memorize the poem (it was one of the most quoted poems from the WWI.) . 
I suspect I'll be seeing  Dr. Lee Anthony again sooooooon!

Dr Anthony's Grandson, Jared, and Great-grandson Andrew, accompanied him to the ceremony.

Prior to the program, Fort Lewis Chapter of the NSDAR members graciously gave out flags, and poppies to guests, family members, Veterans, neighbors,and friends.

The Veterans Day Program started at precisely 11:00AM, 11/11/2023, at Argonne Circle, King George Ave, Old Southwest Roanoke, VA. 

The old tattered flag at Argonne Circle was retired and properly folded. A new American Flag was posted.

My heart was full, witnessing everyone in attendance take part in the program (the Pledge of Allegiance, the Invocation, singing the Star-Spangled Banner, and of course, our guest speaker, Dr. Lee Anthony)

Members, guests, Veterans, placed poppies on the wreath as an act of honoring and remembrance of their special Veteran(s). What an emotional part of the program! 
Yes, indeed, I placed a poppy on that wreath for my Dad, and my Uncle.
A time of fellowship followed the program. 

Thank you DAR sisters! You made this ceremony 'A day to remember and ponder'.

Monday, November 6, 2023

November 6, 2023~Naturalization Day


What an honor and privilege to attend and participate in the NATURALIZATION CEREMONY for 47 NEW citizens. The event took place at the United States District Court Western District of Virginia. The Air Force Junior ROTC from Patrick Henry High School, began the ceremony with the Presentations of Colors.
Special Music by Carilion Clinic Hospice Choir included the "Star Spangled Banner", and "America the Beautiful".
With tears of joy in most of their eyes, and their right hands raised, The Honorable Michael F. Urbanski, Chief United States District Judge, administered the "Oath of Allegiance" to the new 47 United States Citizens. 
The courtroom was filled with friends, family, distinguished guests, teachers, and co-workers......cheering on the successful accomplishments of the now new United States Citizens. 

My heart soared. I beamed with pride. THEY beamed with pride. Their smiles were BIG, BROAD, AND SINCERE. It was an honor to firmly hake each person's hand. Some of the participants drove 3-4 hours to make the 11:00 AM opening court. Many stood, after their oath, with heartfelt remarks of gratitude, for the golden opportunity to become a citizen of the United States. The Naturalization Ceremony concluded with the Pledge of Allegiance, Retirement of Colors, and adjournment. 
If you have never attended a Naturalization Ceremony, find out when the next one takes place. You can be a part of the 'courtroom gallery'. It is an experience that you will not forget. 
A link below, includes 100 CIVICS questions as part of the Naturalization process! I can't help but wonder how many 'born in America' people know the answers! Civics Questions for Naturalization Test.
And here is a link for the reading vocabulary test used for the US Citizenship interview! Reading Vocabulary
I am proud to be an American. #adaytoremember #adaytocelebrate