Memorial Day 2019

We take time to stop and remember the sacrifices that have been made for our freedom. Some gave all. This is Memorial Day. This weekend we remember those who served our country and died in combat. The following photo was taken at the Arlington National Cemetery.

Blades of grass and pure white stones
Shelter those who’ve come and gone.
Just below the emerald sod
Are those who reached the arms of God.

Buried here with dignity
Endless rows for all to see,
Freedom’s seeds in sorrow sown,
‘Neath blades of grass and pure white stones.

Blades of grass and pure white stones
Cover those who left their homes
To rest in fields here, side by side,
Lest we forget their sacrifice.

Buried here with dignity
Endless rows for all to see,
Freedom’s seeds in sorrow sown,
‘Neath blades of grass and pure white stones.

Written by Lowell Alexander, Orrin Hatch, and Philip Naish.

Pay to all what is due them—taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due. Romans 13:7 (NRSV)

IMGP7117This is the Veterans Memorial at the Riverside National Cemetery in Southern California.

IMGP7115

IMGP7120There were many sobering monuments at Riverside National Cemetery.

Our Sunday service at First Baptist Colville was a moving service with tribute given to those who died serving our country. We even stood and recited the Pledge of Allegiance together. My Country Tis of Thee was one of the songs we sang. We thanked God for the freedom we have to come to church and to openly worship Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth and the life and through His sacrifice for our sins  made the only way possible for us to have a relationship with God. There are countries where Christians are being imprisoned or martyred for their faith right now. That’s a sobering reality, too.

Hope you all are having a meaningful weekend.

We Remember the Fallen

We take time to stop and remember the sacrifices that have been made for our freedom. Some gave all. This is Memorial Day.

Pay to all what is due them—taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due. Romans 13:7 (NRSV)

IMGP7117This weekend we remember those who served our country and died in combat. This is the Veterans Memorial at the Riverside National Cemetery in Southern California.

IMGP7115

IMGP7120There were many sobering monuments at this National Cemetery. The Veterans Memorial was one of them. Another sobering monument was the POW/MIA monument.

IMGP7005

IMGP6997

IMGP7001We remember that this isn’t just a long weekend and a barbecue but a significant time that has been set aside on our calendars to acknowledge that sacrifices have been made for our nation and our well being.

IMGP6990Part of our family was able to spend some time at this cemetery in May of 2012. Dear’s father is buried here and we had never seen his grave marker. I took most of these photos then. On Veterans Day in 2015 we were at this cemetery again to bury our brother in law who served in the Viet Nam War. The next photos are from that day.

Memorial Day is the day we honor those who served their country and died in that service.  For our Son-in-law who lost several of his fellow Marines in Afghanistan and in a training exercise in Nevada just within the last few years, the memories are close and raw.

13331148_10156898068110702_3541939029066266538_n

These young men, warriors, that our son-in-law feels privileged to have served with, we remember and pray for their families who remember them everyday not just on Memorial Day.

Memorial Day and Veterans Day honor the sacrifices of innumerable individuals who sacrificed themselves to preserve the freedoms all Americans enjoy, with Memorial Day remembering those who gave their lives, and Veterans Day honoring all who served in the U.S. Armed Forces. It’s important to know the difference.

I’ve been away from my computer all weekend with a short trip to California to honor our dear old pop on his 95th birthday. Hopefully I’ll be able to share some photos from our short time there.

Veterans Day Five x Five

 

They Did Their Share

On Veteran’s Day we honor
Soldiers who protect our nation.
For their service as our warriors,
They deserve our admiration.

Some of them were drafted;
Some were volunteers;
For some it was just yesterday;
For some it’s been many years;

In the jungle or the desert,
On land or on the sea,
They did whatever was assigned
To produce a victory.

Some came back; some didn’t.
They defended us everywhere.
Some saw combat; some rode a desk;
All of them did their share.

No matter what the duty,
For low pay and little glory,
These soldiers gave up normal lives,
For duties mundane and gory.

Let every veteran be honored;
Don’t let politics get in the way.
Without them, freedom would have died;
What they did, we can’t repay.

We owe so much to them,
Who kept us safe from terror,
So when we see a uniform,
Let’s say “thank you” to every wearer.

By Joanna Fuchs

For the record and something I learned from family experience is that soldiers is not a term that describes all of our military.

United States Marines don’t like to be called soldiers. Unless you wish to cause mild offense, refer to them as Marines (usually capitalized). Members of the U.S. Army and National Guard are soldiers. Members of the Air Force are airmen. Members of the Navy are sailors.

 

 

The Veteran on the left served in 3 wars, World War II, Korean War, and Viet Nam. The Veteran on the right served in Viet Nam and is now part of the Patriot Guard Riders.

 

Our daughter Katie married her husband while he was in the Marine Corps and before his first deployment to Afghanistan.

 

Every year, on 11 November at 11 am – the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month – we pause to remember those men and women who have died or suffered in all wars, conflicts and peace operations.

Marine Birthday BallThis is our Marine with our daughter. This was taken at the Marine Ball.

 

Thank you to all our Veterans from all branches of service! Thank you for your service to your fellow man! We appreciate your sacrifice.

A year ago today we laid to rest a Veteran and brother in the Lord surrounded by other veterans from the Southern California Patriot Guard Riders.

Nick's Funeral 099My brother-in-law Nick served in Vietnam and suffered deeply. He died last October 29th and he was buried at the Riverside National Cemetery on November 10th, the day before Veterans Day.

Our son Josh wrote this tribute after Nick’s funeral that we all attended on Tuesday November 10th. This will be the first of a few posts from our time together celebrating Nick’s life on this earth.

“Celebrated the life of my uncle, Nick Titov yesterday. He was a hero for God, Country, and others by serving each sacrificially with Love. A veteran of the Vietnam War, who was laid to rest among 200,000 flag laden graves of fellow servicemen and woman, including my grandfather, Rex at Riverside National Cemetery in California. Thank you for your service to our country Nick! Thank you for your service to our country Titov family. Thank you Veterans and families! Your service and sacrifice can never be repaid, will never be forgotten, and is appreciated more than you know!”

 

The Patriot Guard Riders of Southern California attended Nick’s services. The Patriot Guard attends Fallen Soldier military funerals to show honor and respect to our country’s fallen heroes, their families, and their communities, and to shield them from protesters. They attend the funeral as invited guests of the Fallen Soldier’s family.

Nick enlisted in the United States Army and proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. His years of service were from 1967 to 1969. Nicholas’s job in the service was with Army Intelligence. He had obtained the rank of SP5 at the time of his honorable discharge.

Our niece Debbee and nephew David delivered Nick’s eulogy during the service. They shared some memorable times growing up with Nick as their dad. We cried and we laughed at some of the stories they shared. Our niece Michelle sang “No More Night”. Our brother Steve delivered a poignant message about death. One thing I took away from the message is that Jesus is the one who rescues us from our body of death.

 

No More Night

The timeless theme, Earth and Heaven will pass away
Its not a dream, God will make all things new that day
Gone is the curse from which I stumbled and fell
Evil is banished to eternal hell

 

No more night, no more pain
No more tears, never crying again
And praises to the great, “I AM”
We will live in the light of the risen Lamb

 

See all around, now the nations bow down to sing
The only sound is the praises to Christ, our King
Slowly the names from the book are read
I know the King, so there’s no need to dread

 

No more night, no more pain
No more tears, never crying again
And praises to the great, “I AM”
We will live in the light of the risen Lamb

 

 

The Patriot Guard Riders escort!

 

 

 

 

 

 

A United States flag drapes the casket of deceased veterans to honor the memory of their service to America. The flag is placed so that the blue field with stars is at the head and over the left shoulder of the deceased.

 

Riverside National Cemetery is a cemetery located in Riverside, California, dedicated to the internment of United States military personnel. The services are performed at one of several pavilions located on the cemetery grounds. The actual burial is performed at a later time. Because Nick’s funeral was scheduled on the day before Veteran’s day each grave site was honored with an American flag.

Nick's Funeral 140

Dear has one brother and some of their family and our family were together at Nick’s funeral so we searched the rise above the ceremony for Nick in search of Dear’s father Rex’s grave at this same cemetery. Rex, Dear’s father, a veteran of the 2nd World War was buried here in 1985 a couple months before our Katie was born.  These are Rex’s sons and their families except for our niece Jenna with her husband Justin and Rex’s great grandchildren Skylar and Travis.

I thank God this week for our Veterans, for our son in law and for God protecting him during his service and two tours of duty in Afghanistan, for God’s comfort and protection of my sister Vera widowed when her Veteran who suffered for our country died last year, for my father in law who served his country and loved his wife and family, for our country-the home of the free and the brave.

Forgive me for giving you more than five for.., Friday’s Fave Five, and Foodie Friday and Everything Else but Veterans Day is worth it.  Thank you Susanne, and Michael Lee.

Photobucket is holding many of my photos from this post hostage. I apologize…

We Remember the Fallen…

We take time to stop and remember the sacrifices that have been made for our freedom. Some gave all.

Pay to all what is due them—taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due. Romans 13:7 (NRSV)

IMGP7117This weekend we remember those who served our country and died in combat. This is the Veterans Memorial at the Riverside National Cemetery in Southern California.

IMGP7115

IMGP7120There were many sobering monuments at this National Cemetery. The Veterans Memorial was one of them. Another sobering monument was the POW/MIA monument.

IMGP7005

IMGP6997

IMGP7001We remember that this isn’t just a long weekend and a barbecue but a significant time that has been set aside on our calendars to acknowledge that sacrifices have been made for our nation and our well being.

IMGP6990Part of our family was able to spend some time at this cemetery in May of 2012. Dear’s father is buried here and we had never seen his grave marker. I took most of these photos then. On Veterans Day in 2015 we were at this cemetery again to bury our brother in law who served in the Viet Nam War. The next photos are from that day.

Memorial Day is the day we honor those who served their country and died in that service.  For our Son-in-law who lost several of his fellow Marines in Afghanistan and in a training exercise in Nevada just within the last few years, the memories are too close and raw.

13331148_10156898068110702_3541939029066266538_n

These young men, warriors, that our son-in-law feels privileged to have served with, we remember and pray for their families who remember them everyday not just on Memorial Day.

Memorial Day and Veterans Day honor the sacrifices of innumerable individuals who sacrificed themselves to preserve the freedoms all Americans enjoy, with Memorial Day remembering those who gave their lives, and Veterans Day honoring all who served in the U.S. Armed Forces.

We also plan to celebrate the living this weekend with a barbecue timed strategically between the rain showers! What are your plans?

We Remember…

Our son Josh wrote this tribute after Nick’s funeral that we all attended on Tuesday November 10th. This will be the first of a few posts from our time together celebrating Nick’s life on this earth.

“Celebrated the life of my uncle, Nick Titov yesterday. He was a hero for God, Country, and others by serving each sacrificially with Love. A veteran of the Vietnam War, who was laid to rest among 200,000 flag laden graves of fellow servicemen and woman, including my grandfather, Rex at Riverside National Cemetery in California. Thank you for your service to our country Nick! Thank you for your service to our country Titov family. Thank you Veterans and families! Your service and sacrifice can never be repaid, will never be forgotten, and is appreciated more than you know!”

Sandals Church in Riverside/Moreno Valley California graciously gave us a beautiful space to have Nick’s memorial service and reception. My brother Tim and his wife Letty are members of this church.

This is my pop giving Nick his respect.

The Patriot Guard Riders of Southern California attended Nick’s services. The Patriot Guard attends Fallen Soldier military funerals to show honor and respect to our country’s fallen heroes, their families, and their communities, and to shield them from protesters. They attend the funeral as invited guests of the Fallen Soldier’s family.

Nick enlisted in the United States Army and proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. His years of service were from 1967 to 1969. Nicholas’s job in the service was with Army Intelligence. He had obtained the rank of SP5 at the time of his honorable discharge

Our niece Debbee and nephew David delivered Nick’s eulogy during the service. They shared some memorable times growing up with Nick as their dad. We cried and we laughed at some of the stories they shared. Our niece Michelle sang “No More Night”. Our brother Steve delivered a poignant message about death. One thing I took away from the message is that Jesus is the one who rescues us from our body of death.

No More Night

The timeless theme, Earth and Heaven will pass away
Its not a dream, God will make all things new that day
Gone is the curse from which I stumbled and fell
Evil is banished to eternal hell

No more night, no more pain
No more tears, never crying again
And praises to the great, “I AM”
We will live in the light of the risen Lamb

See all around, now the nations bow down to sing
The only sound is the praises to Christ, our King
Slowly the names from the book are read
I know the King, so there’s no need to dread

No more night, no more pain
No more tears, never crying again
And praises to the great, “I AM”
We will live in the light of the risen Lamb

The Patriot Guard Riders escort!

A United States flag drapes the casket of deceased veterans to honor the memory of their service to America. The flag is placed so that the blue field with stars is at the head and over the left shoulder of the deceased.

The Rifle Salute.

After Taps has been played, the flag is carefully folded into the symbolic tri-cornered shape. A properly proportioned flag will fold 13 times on the triangles, representing the 13 original colonies. The folded flag is emblematic of the tri-cornered hat worn by the Patriots of the American Revolution. When folded, no red or white stripe is to be evident, leaving only the blue field with stars.

The folded flag is then presented as a keepsake to the next of kin or an appropriate family member. Each branch of the Armed Forces uses its own wording for the presentation …

“This flag is presented on behalf of a grateful nation and the United States Army as a token of appreciation for your loved one’s honorable and faithful service.”

The Rifle Guard delivering the spent shells from the rifle salute.

Riverside National Cemetery is a cemetery located in Riverside, California, dedicated to the internment of United States military personnel. The services are performed at one of several pavilions located on the cemetery grounds. The actual burial is performed at a later time. Because Nick’s funeral was scheduled on the day before Veteran’s day each grave site was honored with an American flag.

It was so special to have the Southern California Patriot Guard Riders take time to honor Nick and all of us with their presence and the moving flag line and then the great escort to the cemetery from the church.

I also want to add that this tribute and honor given Nick for his service in Vietnam was long deserved. When he returned from Vietnam back in 1969 he was spit on at the airport. Many people in our country who didn’t agree with this war took it out on anyone in uniform. This contributed to Nick never talking about his service until just recently when he finally opened up to his son.

My future posts from this day will include the many friends and family that attended the services.

On the Go…

Soon we’ll be in Huntington Beach again gathering for my BIL’s services and funeral. As we age we face the reality that family gatherings contrast dramatically between joy and sorrow. The last time I was in Southern California my time was divided between the Critical Care hospital waiting room and a beautiful setting at a joyful baby shower for a much anticipated arrival come January, a new grand niece.

I will do a full post on the lovely baby shower in the future.

This time when we head to Southern California more of us will gather around my sister and her kids as we lay Nick to rest at the Riverside National Cemetery. We don’t grieve as those who have no hope. We have hope and confidence that God has prepared a place for Nick. We will hug old friends and the Russians among us will welcome each other with a kiss.

When I was spending time in the waiting room at Cedar Sinai Hospital in Beverly Hills my eyes were opened to other families in the waiting room and how similar different cultures are at these critical times. Our first night at Cedar’s there was a Hispanic extended family taking up every chair and some on the floor of the waiting area. At least 20 or more. They vacated some chairs so my sister and I could sit down, too. As some of them left to go home they went around to each of their friends and family and gave them a hug and a kiss on the cheek. They even turned to us and gave us a kind farewell. The longer we sat together the more connected we became. The matriarch of the family offered us some food. She also shushed any of the younger folk who’s chatter got to loud. When we left we said goodbye and God Bless you. Their eyes lit up and they smiled and said God bless you, too.

We were glad the waiting room had large windows that made the space feel lighter.

We all find ourselves in a variety of waiting rooms throughout our lives. What are you waiting for? What is your hope?

Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you. Psalm 33:22

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13

For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. Galatians 5:5

For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe. 1 Timothy 4:10

Memorial Day Weekend

Here in the U.S.A. we are at the beginning of our Memorial Day Weekend with Monday May 25th being a national Memorial Day holiday.

When we were in Southern California for our nephews wedding in 2012 we made a special trip to Riverside National Cemetery where Dear’s father was buried in October of 1985, just a couple months before our Katie was born. Today I’m sharing some very dramatic memorials from the cemetery for this Memorial Day Weekend.

When the Warrior Returns

When the warrior returns, from the battle afar,
To the home and the country he nobly defended,
O! Warm be the welcome to gladden his ear,
And loud be the joy that his perils are ended:
In the full tide of song let his fame roll along,
To the feast-flowing board let us gratefully throng,
Where, mixed with the olive, the laurel shall wave,
And form a bright wreath for the brows of the brave.

~ Francis Scott Key

We thank God our son-in-law, our warrior returned from his perils.

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Riverside National Cemetery is the third-largest cemetery managed by the National Cemetery Administration, and since 2000 has been the most active in the system based on the number of interments. It was established in 1976 through the transfer of 740 acres from March Air Force Base, which during World War II was called the U.S. Army’s Camp William G. Haan. The cemetery was dedicated and opened for burials Nov. 11, 1978. An additional 181 acres was transferred by the Air Force in 2003.

The dramatic, meandering landscape features a central boulevard with memorial circles, lakes, indigenous-styled committal shelters, and a memorial amphitheater.

Riverside National cemetery is home of the Medal of Honor Memorial and one of four sites recognized as a National Medal of Honor Memorial Site. The Medal of Honor Memorial, whose walls feature the names of all medal recipients, is located at the third traffic circle in the cemetery. It was dedicated in 1999.

Walking up to the Medal of Honor Memorial you see each of the seals of the branches of service. Of course we have our favorite…

Several Medal Honor Recipients are buried at this cemetery.

The Fallen Soldier/Veterans’ Memorial, erected in 2000, is dedicated to all service members who gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country. The dramatic bronze structure topped by a lifeless soldier is located near the lake at the entrance to the cemetery.

This and the POW/MIA Memorial were very moving…

The Prisoner of War/Missing in Action National Memorial was designated as a national memorial by the U.S. Congress in 2004 through Public Law 108-454. The memorial was dedicated on September 16, 2005. Vietnam veteran Lewis Lee Millett, Jr., sculpted the bronze statue which depicts an American serviceman on his knees with hands bound by his captors. The statue is surrounded by black marble pillars that evoke imprisonment.

While we were at the cemetery we had an unexpected treat. See everyone looking up? March Air Force Base was hosting an air show this weekend and we got a wonderful view of the Patriots Jet Team.

Hope you have a meaningful Memorial Day weekend.