Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day 2013

Every year I decorate the graves of my family at our local cemetery, take pics, and post them here so my relatives can see what I did. These four are the main reason I go - from left to right is my Aunt Patsy, my Grandmother Jeanette, my Grandfather Leo (who died before I was born) and my father - Robert J. Borland. Dad and Leo were both veterans, so I put flags as decoration on their graves.

Looking to the northwest, then west, then southwest from the family area - this is part of the "new" section, and it's usually fairly well decorated. Further south there are no graves.

This is in the old section of the cemetery - Jesse would be a great uncle of mine.

Jesse's parents and sister. Dad was named for R.J., and then I was named for Dad. I am a junior, but I really should be a III. Elizabeth - mother and wife, and Letha - a daughter.

These two pics more or less show the layout of the graves in the plot. There is still room there - this may be my final resting place since there is no room left near Dad, unless they tear out a shrub. I have to wonder what the holes in the concrete footings were for - they clearly had steel posts embedded and then cut off at ground level. I suppose there was a wrought iron fence there at one time.

And, as has become my custom - I purchased some extra small flags just like I used on these graves and went searching for veterans who had nothing decorating their resting place. Usually, I start looking in the old section and catch the old Civil War vets and others, but today I could see a few close by my Dad's place, so that is where I went. I couldn't believe the number I saw there that had nothing. I can understand why - as we will see in further comments.

I didn't even know "Mr. Giddens" was buried here. This veteran also happened to be the principal of good ol' USD #102 for years and years, certainly while I was there attending grade school and on into high school as well. There was no separate principal for grade and high schools back then - he was it.

Last I'd heard, his wife was still alive, but she had moved some years ago. None of his children are even close anymore, either. I'm sure it would be a hardship to drive to Cimarron each and every year to decorate his grave and say a prayer or three. Just a shame, anyways.

I've decorated Mr. Davis's grave before - his is just west of the old family plot. I had five or six flags left, but it was ninety nine degrees when I left the house for the cemetary, and all that walking and bending over trying to push things in rock hard dry pasture ground had me pretty well shot. I went to the grocery store and got something to drink, and after I'd had about half the cup, I started sweating. I hadn't noticed I was that hot. Certainly not acclimated to the heat yet - I should have had something to drink with me to chill some.

I never made it into the old section - it seemed my efforts were better spent in the new section this time. Maybe next year I'll bring more flags and hopefully more stamina. Like I've said before, I could give a rat's a$$ what anyone thinks about me decorated neglected graves - I do it for entirely selfish reasons. I just feel I could do more.

I noticed a flag holder on the house when I moved in, so I bought a flag, by golly. However, it didn't fit in that holder, but it did come with a new one. Which I mounted, obviously.

You know, I'm pretty likely to say that I enjoy the simpler things in life, and that flying our flag would probably qualify. However, there are a lot of complex thoughts and emotions involved in flying our nation's flag - all wrapped up in the symbolism, the sacrifice of our fore bearers, what our Founding Fathers endured, and the ideas of liberty and freedom it represents to the masses who would love to live here across the world. Maybe we're not so simple for flying it, after all.


Becki Taylor said...

Jeffro, you make me so proud. When I was in Campfire girls around 1965 or 66 we would go to the cemetery at 6 a.m. And place flags on all the veterans graves. You done good today my dear friend!!!!!

Earl said...

It isn't really complicated, just seems to be for all the noise. I know you and several million others have gone and done what we could to honor and remember those from the better past.

I have noticed that the Asians do much better in visiting the graves as long as they have mobility. They bring wine, rice cakes and talk to the dead, they clip the grass and leave flowers and pictures.

You did just fine, thank you.

lisa said...

That is wonderful of you! I saw on the news that someone was taking the metal tags off of graves that were military and you couldn't tell who were veterans. They were smart and had the paper work to go back too and they did catch some of the culprits. It is sad to think that someone would do such a thing. They use the metal tags to be able to stick the flags at the grave sites.

pleasantp said...

Thank you for your patriotism and respect for those who have gone before you. Not many young folks that give a damn anymore

Nuckle Kim