This is Memorial Day 2009, and we pay tribute to those who gave their lives in service of their country.
I have only a few military caps, including this one that I picked up some time ago in the waning years of Naval Air Station Alameda. It’s from the USS Abraham Lincoln, which used to be based in San Francisco Bay but has since moved north to Bremerton, Wash.
Of all the military might that the U.S. shows, it’s hard to top the firepower of an aircraft carrier.
I was born early enough to have a draft card and lottery number, but just late enough to have escaped the draft for service in Vietnam. I thank God for that, especially for not ending up in the Navy. In my one sea-going venture, aboard the Butchie B fishing vessel out of Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco, I proved myself completely unseaworthy. Words cannot describe the misery I felt as the Butchie B bobbed off the Golden Gate in the wake of an Alaskan storm. Once I hurled my breakfast over the rail, I righted myself and actually caught a couple of salmon and was feeling pretty spry as we sailed back into SF.
Would I have been able to endure naval combat? I’ll never know.
But I do know I am mighty grateful for the brave men and women who have given their lives over the centuries in service of their country. I fly the flag today in their honor.