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A funny thing happened on my way to the National Memorial Day Concert…

June 16, 2011

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been watching the National Memorial Day Concert on PBS (which means that for as long as I can remember I’ve needed a box of tissues with each concert).  You could say I’ve been watching it for almost twenty-one years.  And the series is twenty-two years old! Neato. So… funny story.  A friend of mine asked me if I wanted to go to a free concert that evening– Chris Allen and BB King were going to be performing.  Who doesn’t love the words “free” and “concert”?!  So I tag along and thus we come to a dramatic reenactment.

—Scene I:—

(Walking with group) Curious Historian: “Yeah so every year there’s this really good concert they air on PBS and NJN for Memorial Day.  I keep meaning to check online to see where/when it is and how much it costs, because it’d be really cool to finally see it in person!”

Friend (awkward pause): “… That’s where we’re.. going…”

Curious Historian: “REALLY?!”

Friend: “Yeah…” (Awkward balloons)

—Aaaaand Scene.—

So lo and behold, I got to see the National Memorial Day Concert with my very own eyes!

Do you know how cool it is to see Gary Sinise and General Colin Powell? REALLY cool.  The whole concert was phenomenal.  As it were, we got the last seats in the house (intern life you know).  But there’s something awesome about sitting right under the Capitol, so I can’t complain!

 The performances were all incredible! I especially liked hearing the Marine Corps Drum & Bugle Corps perform.  They sounded so clean and sharp!  Loved it.  Chris Allen and BB King did a great job too, as well as the other artists who performed.

This year’s tribute was primarily a commemoration of the tenth anniversary of September 11.  Like clockwork, the tears formed and I felt so saddened by the powerful emotion around the event arena.  One decade later after Usama bin Laden’s death, memories are still fresh and cuts still run deep.  It was very fitting to commemorate those who perished in the attacks across the country and to honor those who were still living and/or survived by family.

There was also a story about a girl whose father had been killed in the Vietnam War by a grenade three months after she was born.  The girl said she felt like “shattered glass” for so many years until a friend of her father’s reached out to her so many years later.  The two decided to embark on a journey to return to the site where her father had perished and the girl felt like she could finally mend her life back together.  I felt so sorry for her loss but felt a rush of thankfulness for having my father alive and well.

When the traditional five songs of the armed forces came on, I stood up for my father who is a retired U.S. Navy Commander (Naval Aviator).  Thanks for your service Daddy!  I’m proud to be your daughter :]

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 17, 2011 12:12

    Great title for the blog and really good entries so far! Keep going, this should be really interesting for a lot of people from Stockton and beyond.

    Good luck!!!!

    • December 27, 2011 12:34

      Many thanks Dean Gregg! I have restarted the blog– now I will be focusing on the process of writing my senior history thesis in a new section on this site called “The Thesis Files”. I hope you will check in from time to time. Best wishes for a new year and spring semester!

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