2012 Memorial Day Service At Houston VA National Cemetery
This post has two pictures I took a few days ago at the Houston VA National Cemetery. It seemed the right thing to do to visit this place over Memorial Day Weekend.
Here is what my father—who died last year—wrote based on his combat experience in the Korean War—
“One thing that I learned is that the young men who fought in our wars should never be forgotten…Another fact I learned…is that millions may serve but far fewer fight. So, in reality, for many who have served, war is a glory-and-gory myth that feeds on its own legends and publicity. …Another truth I learned is that civilians are combatants in war–embattled victims perpetually on a losing side….That brings us to the biggest deception: The need to be ready defend our freedom if we are to keep it. Those who say that freedom has a price are absolutely right, and wrong: International conflict today is beyond ideology. The only freedom American and Russian leaders offer their people today is the freedom to kill ourselves in the name of freedom. This is not freedom, but allegiance to a suicidal death culture….Today, we are servile to our masters, mistaking economic well-being for true freedom, which is the freedom to live hopefully and not to die needlessly.”
There will be a Memorial Day service at the Houston VA Cemetery. At the bottom of this post are the details.
The best way we can mark Memorial Day is to recall and thank those who served, thank those who have worked over the years for peace, and work each day ourselves for a society in which we never again go to war based on a lie as we did in Iraq.
Here are the details about the Memorial Day observance in Houston—
A special Memorial Day Service will be held on Monday, May 28, 2012 at 9:30 a.m. at the Houston VA National Cemetery, located at 10410 Veterans Memorial Drive.
This year, the Department of Veterans Affairs is pleased to announce that retired Navy Reserve Captain Richard L. Halferty will give the Memorial Day address. Halferty serves as the Chief Operating Officer for H.M.S. Telecom LLC., and has extensive experience in logistics, contingency and emergency planning. Halferty served in the United States Navy Reserve for over 38 years retiring as a Captain in 1986. He currently serves as Chairman, Korean War Veterans, Lone Star Chapter. Among his military awards are the Navy Commendation Medal, China Service Medal, National Defense Medal, Armed Forces Reserve and the United Nations Medal.
In addition to Halferty’s remarks, the event will feature a parade of colors and wreaths by numerous local veterans’ organizations, ROTC units, and Boy and Girl Scout troops. All Boy and Girl Scout organizations in southeast Texas are invited to attend.
There will also be many symbolic highlights including a flyover by the U.S. Coast Guard; a performance of Taps; a cannon salute; a riderless horse procession by the Houston Police Mounted Patrol; Amazing Grace performed by Ian Martin; and a rifle salute by the 1st Battalion, 23rd Marines. Peggy Slay, president of the Houston Gold Star Mothers, will lead the pledge of allegiance.
The Memorial Day Service, honoring deceased United States servicemen and women, is free and open to the public.
Visit the Houston National Cemetery Administration Web site at http://www.cem.va.gov/CEM/cems/nchp/houston.asp for construction information. Guests who wish to visit gravesites are encouraged to arrive prior to 8 a.m. or after 1 p.m. following the Memorial Day service.
Metro Service: The 108 Veterans Memorial will provide special service to the Houston National Cemetery in honor of the national holiday. Park for FREE at the North Shepherd Park & Ride for convenient connection to the 108 Veterans Memorial. The route will run from 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. (fares apply) on a 20 minute frequency. Additional transportation will be provided at the gate of the Cemetery to the event. For more information, contact Metro at 713-635-4000.