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So Proudly We Hail

The Spirit of Tehachapi


The Bear Valley Springs Veterans Association marches in the Memorial Day parade. Photo by Micaela Pryor.

Through the years, here in town, people have been known to say, "It's never been this hot!" Then, I have heard, "It's never been this cold!" Then, of course, "It's never been this dry!" and "It's never been this wet!" Well, the answer to all is, "It has." Just to finish this off, I can say that in 1899 we had 3.70 inches of rain( a dry year to match 2015) and in 1982 we had a record of 26.89 precipitation. That last is an all time record. Why, the above is mentioned is that when attending the Memorial Day Service in the park there were people everywhere! I said to Del Troy, "You know, we've never remembered by their home town folk. It was also good to be there and experience the camaraderie that prevailed among those attending. It made one proud to be an American.

We had four meetings with Tehachapi Valley Parks and Recreation to get the details ironed out for the ceremony. Lots of details. The parade, the speakers, flag raising, the Pledge of Allegiance, the National Anthem beautifully sung by Christina Yandk, the rifle squad and taps played. Details that all came together. I mention no names except for the singer, for fear of omitting someone.

Albertson's donated 200 hot dogs, buns and water to be given to the public after the ceremony. They were cooked and passed out by the American Legion Auxiliary and the Daughters of the American Revolution - there were no leftovers.

One person, though, Seth Carroll of TVRPD was the first to arrive and the last to leave. He did the leg work with the City of Tehachapi for the parade permits the parade route blocked off, the volunteer police on duty. Volunteers helped with setting up of chairs as well as putting away ll equipment later. "Parks and Rec." even provided the wreath placed in memory of our fallen comrades. Each year those details just get done and although people are happy with the results they don't really know who had arranged it. The veterans organizations were right on schedule with their part. A good dau.

The local news comes through each year announcing the event. I had a call from the Antelope Valley Press in Lancaster, who offered and did print the coming event in their paper, as well.

People have a tendancy to list anyone who has served in the Armed Forces as "Soldiers." The United States Army members are known as soldiers. A fine branch of the Service claiming that honor. When it comes to the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard we should refer to them as "Seamen or Sailors." When it comes to the Air Force we call them "Airmen." Then the U.S. Marines, are known as "Marines." Members of these organizations like to be called by their own branch of the service. When referring to our own country's military forces we might say, Armed Forces, Military Forces. My husband always, for thirty years, called them "Troops." Chaplain Clare calls them "Warriors."

As I wind this up I cannot help but recall some mis-guided citizens saying, "This country is going to hell in a handcart!" We know that it's just an American spouting off. But, let someone from afar; someone who is not an American say that and you've got a fight on your hands! No matter how wrong they are, they still have the right to say it. This country may not be perfect but it's still the best in the world. That's the good old U.S.A.!


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