Tuesday, June 01, 2004


"The world should know of those who give so much for liberty.
The dearest thing in all the world to a father and mother---their children."
- Congressional Record 1917

Each day on my walk I pass this image in the window of a home on a small cul de sac.

Many of you know what it symbolizes, but in case others might want an explanation, it is what's been termed a "Blue Star Flag" or "Service Flag".

It's a tradition started during the First World War - American families displayed small flags or cardboard placards in their windows to let others know that someone in their family was serving our country in the military.

The tradition grew more popular during World War II, thanks in large part to radio promotion. In recent years, there has been a small resurgence.

Tradition calls for the blue star, which symbolizes hope and pride, to be replaced with a silver star should that family's service member be wounded....if they are killed, a gold star is put in its place representing sacrifice.

As I mentioned, one of these small placards sits prominently in the window of a home I pass every day. It is in fact the home of the two young red haired boys I wrote about a couple of months ago.

I don't know what family member of theirs is serving, but when I saw the placard placed in the window a few weeks ago I started thinking about those little boys differently.

I considered writing this on Memorial Day. I thought that would have been fitting, but then I decided that would actually be wrong.

You see, that placard is in the window to remind passersby like me that a great sacrifice is being made by the family in that home. It's not something they put out once a year on holidays...it's an every day reminder.

It should be for me too.

I've also decided each day as I walk past that home I will say a small prayer.

A prayer for safety...and a prayer of thanks.