1928 - Alderson High School - 1968



Dan Duff


Memorial Day:  A day set aside to honor
those men and women who paid the
ultimate price for serving their country.


This is the perfect time for Memorial Day.  It's officially bringing in the Summer season, opening the pool and bringing out the barbecue grill.  It is the first long weekend of good weather when you can finish up the spring cleaning, clean out the garage and have the family over for a cookout.  Oh yea, and spend at least ten seconds on the fallen heroes thing. After all that's the least we can do for those who helped to get us this a long weekend.

Now that the weekend is over and the house full of company has left and I pat myself on the back for having had so great a time,  I get an e-mail from Barry Worrell telling me how he remembered Charlie Lobban, back in 1945, running down Main Street in Alderson clanging a cow bell and screaming " the war is over", "the war is over".

I only remember when word reached our house,  my mother sat down in the kitchen and cried.  I had two brothers in World War 11.  One was in the Navy in the Pacific and the other was in the Army in Europe.  I remember my brothers coming home and being a five year old (almost) I could not say "salute" so I said "swoot".  It was a nickname that stuck with me for a lot of years.  I would see two more brothers serving during the Korean war and nephews going off to Viet Nam.  Now I worry that my grandson who is in the army will be called to go to Iraq.  I was lucky to serve when we were in between conflicts.

A lot of guys came back from these wars and a lot of them didn't.  There were a lot of them who came back with a lot of problems.  A lot of them could not forget the fear and carnage they had gone through and witnessed.  They became alcoholics, neer-do-wells and mal-contents.  As family members and neighbors we only got to see the outward problems.  We could only imagine the demons they had to fight and overcome on a daily basis on the inside. It was only after the Viet Nam war the government started dealing with the psychic problems the men and women of war brought back with them.

War still rages and every day a flag draped casket arrives in a small town like Alderson and a family huddles around it trying to deal with their loss.

If we are to remain free and enjoy the celebrations of long weekends and cook outs with family and friends we will have to endure the wars and the personal losses that go with it. Those who wish us to believe that we can "all get along", are living in gross denial and the politicians who promise it are giving you false hope.  Freedom has always been paid with a price, whether it is political, religious or personal.

The least we can do is to set aside a day to honor them with parades and speeches and activities that keep it in our minds the other 364 days a year.  



For A. H. S. Ever Always - In Every Way For A. H. S.