Veteran’s Day

Every scout meeting ends with ‘Circle Time’ and announcements. Scoutmaster John always finishes with a Scoutmaster Minute. It is time for words of wisdom or a thought about living the Scout Law and what is truly important. Friday, 11/11 is Veterans Day and Tuesday night he shared the following poem and thought.

Freedom Is Not Free
I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Airman saluted it,
And then he stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform,
So young, so tall, so proud;
With hair cut square and eyes alert,
He stood out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him,
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers’ tears?
How many pilots planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many fox holes were soldiers graves?
No, freedom is not free.
I heard Taps sound one night,
When everything was still.
I listened to the bugle play,
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times,
Taps had meant “Amen,”
When a flag had covered a coffin,
Of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children
Of the mothers and the wives.
Of the fathers, sons, and husbands,
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard,
At the bottom of the sea,
Of unmarked graves at Arlington.
No, Freedom Is Not Free!

A Veteran of the Korean War, 22 year Marine career, and Wheaton resident is interred at St. Michael's Cemetery in Wheaon, Illinois - October 2011

By Charles M. Province
It is the soldier, not the reporter
Who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the soldier, not the poet
Who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the soldier, not the campus organizer
Who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.
It is the soldier, not the lawyer
Who has given us the right to a fair trial.
It is the soldier
Who salutes the flag,
Who serves under the flag,
Whose coffin is draped in the flag,
Who allows the protester to burn the flag.


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