Tuesday, November 11, 2014

When Patriotism Hits You Hard

Last Saturday the kids and I went to the Veteran's Day Parade.
What I didn't expect was the emotions I went through. Tissues, please! 
My Dad. Vietnam War Veteran and biker.
Oak Harbor, WA is a Navy town, tried and true, so being patriotic is everything here. Most peeps know I love motorcycles and ride mine everyday I can. And at this parade, the combo of patriotism plus motorcycles hit this small island in a huge wave. CHECK MY CLIP:
 
 
Hundreds of veteran bikers came out to the parade. I was in hog heaven I tell ya. My emotions were spilling over with admiration for them and their service, getting me all choked up. (Biker humor)
 
Many bikes adorned themselves with flags
One bada** biker even parked his bike during the parade and approached an elderly man leaning against a light pole decked out in his navy cap. "Sir, thank you for your service," he said looking him dead in the eyes. I nearly lost it. Many more nodded in respect to the Navy men walking by, and in return they would nod back. Agh! The respect was killing me! Tissues!
 
 
Then as the parade was held up and barely moving, we walked down to the other end of downtown, (it's small, takes like 5 mins if you stroll, 1 1/2 briskly) to see why. I was submerged in a sea of Navy men and women wearing their dress blues passing me. And I about cried.
 
 
Now that I'm approaching mid 30's, they appear like babies. Just kids. And I thought it's not fair. Their too young!! It was hard to face them and not think maybe that person won't be alive months from now serving his/her country. Again, their just kids!!
 
Downtown Flag Display
 When we approached the end of the parade, I was awe struck with the American Flag held up in the middle of the road and each veteran motorcycle club taking turns to stop, acknowledge the Navy commander in the raised podium to the left, and then ride off. I included a clip of it. PLEASE WATCH:
 
video
  
When I saw the first set do it, I literally teared up, and my heart sank. How amazing. Happy Veteran's Day. And thank you to those who have served and who are still serving. You're everything to this country being safe.

26 comments:

JoJo said...

Western Washington is very patriotic with all the military presence. I lived in Pierce County with JBLM right there. A blessed & peaceful Veterans Day to you.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tammy - I'm glad you took your children to the local Veteran's Parade - it must have been very emotive ... and an honour to have been there ...

Thanks - Hilary

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Wow, that's amazing. Those bikers understood respect.
Anyone under thirty is a child to me and seeing all of those children in uniform would've been moving.

Terri Tiffany said...

Well you made me cry! We take their service for granted and we shouldn't. I know I could not have done what my husband did.

Stephanie Faris said...

What a nice tribute to vets. It's been SO long since I've been to a parade.

Pat Hatt said...

A wonderful tribute it looks like indeed and well deserved, none of us would have what we have if it wasn't for them.

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

no words to add

*salute*

Debra She Who Seeks said...

As we say in Canada -- "Lest we forget." Very moving.

Leandra Wallace said...

This post made me well up w/tears! I would have needed tissues at that parade as well. I've always appreciated our military/veterans, and I see a lot of them out and about, as I live close to Fort Atterbury. And my baby bro just recently joined the marines(he's in boot camp now in California) and I couldn't be prouder of him!

Morgan said...

Beautiful, Tammy! I loved this… such a great spirit for such an important day. <3

Elephant's Child said...

Our remembrance day is a great deal quieter. No parades. A quiet observance at eleven minutes past the eleventh hour.
Parades are limited to ANZAC Day (April 25), start before dawn and are over by mid-day.
The respect is not. The respect is never over.

Denise Covey said...

Hello Tammy. Thank you for this post and for the pictures and videos. Rather lively, yet touching. We celebrate Anzac Day in April, which is our answer to Veteran's Day I guess. Very emotional also as Australia lost a great proportion of her young men, which goes some way to explain our very low population.

And Tammy, I have changed my URL. I don't know if you had me on your blogroll (probably not) but I am now to be found at:

http://dencovey.blogspot.com

Very lonely at my place at the moment!!

Or maybe it's just the fact I've posted about the G20 and people are afraid to comment on a political post in case Big Brother gets them, lol!

Denise from Down Under :)

Annalisa Crawford said...

Lest we forget.

Elise Fallson said...

<3

jaybird said...

It's awesome to see that kind of support. I would have been crying right along side you!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

It is humbling. As a teacher, too many of my former students are serving. And to me they will always be 'just kids.' God bless and protect them all.

David P. King said...

A large gathering of bikers is an amazing sight. It's a different kind of energy. Glad you were able to go! :)

SA Larsenッ said...

This is wonderful! I love that they put so much effort into showing support and thanks to our veterans. We really should do it more often. My dad was also in Vietnam - two tours. When I sift through his old photos and think about how differently life could have gone for me...

The Silver Fox said...

My dad was a WWII veteran. So few of them left now!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

There are a group of bikers who will ride for a charity. My college football team hired them and they rode onto the field with American flags waving and circled the field. It was all sorts of awesome- and knowing they did it to raise money for a children's hospital just gave me total goose bumps.

Don't judge a biker by the leather- there's tender hearts in those chests!

SuperLux said...

A salute to the heroes who are often taken for granted.

Tammy Theriault said...

thank you all for coming :D the support is amazing for our veterans

Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! said...

Greetings human, Tammy,

This be a poignant,timely story you have shared. The emotions, the respect, the thankfulness is there within the power of your words.

May those who are serving and those who served who were left homeless on the streets, be embraces and respected as it should be.

In peace and hope,

Penny.

shelly said...

Very nice. I don't do motorcycles because I'm deathly afraid of them. But I'm a navy brat and love parades.

DMS said...

What a beautiful post! The parade sounds so touching, I can see why you needed lots of tissues! So wonderful to see so much patriotism around you. Thanks to all those who served.
~Jess

The Happy Whisk said...

Good post and I'd probably tear up too. Such a wuss, but so what, eh?