Saturday, February 19

FRANK EVERETT JELDY

I tried this morning to commemorate the Battle of Iwo Jima in a post. I've read several histories of the terrible battle that raged there against fierce resistance (fighting to the death) from the Japanese. My father was a U.S. Marine in World War II -- a drill instructor and tail gunner. He no doubt trained men who fought in that battle. My brother-in-law enlisted in the Marines and served in Vietnam. So it seemed entirely fitting to remember the day and not to do a lot of other posts. It's important that Americans know their country's history and show respect for the fallen on the anniversaries of great battles. The spine of our nation is formed by the endless rows of white crosses in military cemetaries here and all over the world.

But I just came into my Study and pulled up (via "Lucianne") a post so touching that I feel compelled not only to link to it, but to say to its author, Deborah, that you've done a wonderful thing for the memory of your beloved father. Your words came from the heart and your sentiments were genuine and ever so respectful. He obviously was a very good man -- a family man and a patriot.

I should add that my father is still alive, but in ill health. On my most recent trip to visit him and my Mom, while he was recovering from very serious surgery, he asked me to make him his favorite salad -- a Ceasar. We sat on the back patio of his hillside home, savoring the salad and a glass of vino together. In the valley below, a sea of lights glimmered like so many memories of his distant youth.