Wreaths Across America....2014

Written by David DiCrescenzo on . Posted in National News

Without wasting a moment, and shortly after the first of every year, the preparations begin for the next Wreaths Across America event held each December…because it takes that long to put something of this magnitude together.  

Even the casual observer at one of these ceremonies at any of the National Cemeteries across America has to recognize that a lot of time, planning, and money is needed to make this such a success.  Additionally, it is important to note that not one of the many thousands of people involved are paid staff.  This is strictly a volunteer effort where the best of the best make the calls, raise the funds, drive the miles, and just do a thousand other things to make this event more and more successful each year.

There are the fundraisers held at places like Lowe’s where men and women from groups like the Patriot Guard Riders will spend a day explaining what Wreaths Across America is all about to many of the contractors and homeowners who enter.  

There are schools involved, and one had the following result.  One of the Patriot Guard Riders in Palm Beach County, a man that everyone refers to as Rabbi, reported thusly.

“On December 3, 2014 the Patriot Guard Riders attended a check presentation at Renaissance Charter School, on State Rd. 7 Wellington, FL.

There were three motorcycles and one cage, Ken, Henry, John, and Rabbi.

Jack Nealy the principal presented Rabbi with a check for $4050.00 that he raised with the help of his students, to donate to Wreaths Across America, for the annual wreath laying ceremony on December 13, 2014 at the South Florida National Cemetery, in Lake Worth, Fl. Mr. Nealy Thank you very much.”

That’s what it’s all about.  People in communities all across America raising the funds and volunteering to make sure that all of our men and women who have served get a wreath on their grave.  

Let me also note that the ceremonies are timed so that all of the wreaths are placed at the same time across the nation, which means that many ceremonies take place in very harsh conditions.  

The local event shaped up like this.  On Friday morning, 12/12/14, a very chilly morning by Palm Beach standards, about 60 hardy members of the Patriot Guard Riders gathered at Harley Davidson of Palm Beach at the crack of dawn.  

After the coffee was finished and the ride plans were laid out by Ride Captain Alan Cole, the kickstands went up and the procession headed up to Ft. Pierce to the Walmart Distribution Center to escort the three trucks loaded with over 13,000 wreaths bound for the National Cemetery in Lake Worth.  I have to admit that sitting in the comfort of our “support cage,” it didn’t escape me that the PGR guys had to be freezing on their bikes. 

Upon arrival at the Walmart Distribution Center, the enormity of what they do began to sink in. One can say what they want about Walmart; however, they step up to the plate in a very big way every year to support this amazing cause.  They supply the trucks, drivers, food and refreshments for volunteers.  I might add, this isn’t something they 'palm off’ to just any of their staff…every one of the Walmart people I spoke to is honored to be a part of it, and puts their heart and soul into it.  The pride of guys like truck driver Larry who is a major part of this every year shines.  Larry doesn’t just drive that truck, he understands that every wreath, every tear, every dollar spent, and every moment of the entire event honors our fallen, and every one of them has a story.  To a lot of people that are part of the So. Florida arm of Wreaths Across America, Larry is Walmart, and he happily and humbly just does what he does.  Thank you Larry and thank you Walmart.  By the way, not to belabor the point, but I believe it needs to be noted that Walmart donated in excess of $102K for the So. Florida operation alone, and while I have no idea the extent of their participation nationwide, I have to believe the numbers are staggering. 

So, breakfast was done, plaques and photos were presented…daylight was burning and there were wreaths to be escorted.  At the stroke of 9:00 am, kickstands went up, and with FHP escorts leading the way, 13,000 wreaths were on their way to adorn the graves of fallen heroes in Lake Worth, FL.

I have to tell you, driving down the approach roads to the Florida Turnpike, watching and listening to the police escort and their sirens racing by us, stopping traffic, waving us on, and just being in the middle of such an amazing part of the process…it was very emotional.  For almost the entire ride, the Channel 5 News Chopper was hovering overhead covering the ride.

Upon arrival at the Lake Worth National Cemetery, seeing the hundreds of volunteers that had assembled to help unload the trucks and neatly stack, in piles of ten, the beautifully made wreaths, was also very emotional.  Not just for me, but for the handful of onlookers who were visiting their loved ones.  While no one dares forget that we are on hallowed ground, sometimes those visiting graves go unnoticed.  I saw and met one woman, who was visiting the grave of her husband, and was watching what was happening…she was in tears.  Her tears were not just for her husband; however, she didn’t know I was covering the event, and I didn’t tell her.  She just wanted to thank all of us for what we were doing, and she gave me a hug.  I can’t really describe that hug…it was at once sad and happy.  For just a moment in time, two strangers were brought together during an event to honor our heroes…I was misty eyed the rest of the day.

Then on Saturday, the ceremony took place, there were prayers, brief speeches by some of the many involved, and tributes to our fallen heroes and the hallowed ground we were walking on. One of the most poignant moments of the day was the special tribute paid by Mike Nuckles as he led us in a collective remembrance of the main driving force in So. Florida for this event; a friend and inspiration to so many, Melinda Galiano, who has now left us to join her dad…his own grave among those honored in Lake Worth.  Fittingly, it was Melinda’s husband Gary, who very quietly and privately, laid the Wreath for Melinda’s dad.

At the conclusion of the ceremonies, all of the Wreaths that had been meticulously laid out on Friday were gently placed at the foot of each grave.  Moms, dads, children of all ages, relatives of the interred heroes, and many patriotic citizens paid their respect and once again turned a field of white into a field of green and white in what seemed almost a blink of an eye.  And just like that, there was a Wreath at every grave.  Mission accomplished.     

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CO Prof...basically, "...America sucks"

Written by The Patriots Press on . Posted in National News

Publisher’s note:  Like many of today’s academics, this 'professor’ has a clear message to indoctrinate the youth of America with, “…your parents are wrong, your faith is wrong, everything you hold dear is wrong, and most importantly, any conservative thought of any kind is wrong.”  “Furthermore, if you disagree with ‘me,’ you will fail ‘my’ course.  

All of his students are forced to recite the following very anti-American pledge…

“" pledge allegiance to and wrap myself in the flag of the United States Against Anything Un-American,” reads Angeletti's version. “And to the Republicans for which it stands, two nations, under Jesus, rich against poor, with curtailed liberty and justice for all except blacks, homosexuals, women who want abortions, Communists, welfare queens, treehuggers, feminazis, illegal immigrants, children of illegal immigrants, and you, if you don't watch your step.”

I suppose a sample curriculum schedule probably looks something like this.  Monday…America sucks; Tuesday…Christians suck; Wednesday…Becoming gay; Thursday…Embracing islam for dummies; Friday…Open discussion of liberal thought.  

I can only speak for myself and probably about 50 or 60 million conservatives, but I don’t want my children or grand-children anywhere near an individual like this.  The lesson here is to be very careful where your education dollars are spent.

Fox News:  If you sign up for Denver college professor Charles Angeletti's American Civilization class, be forewarned that you're going to have to recite his invective-filled 'New Pledge' -- and according to some of his students, also be ready to swallow a big helping of his politics.

Angeletti, who teaches at Metropolitan State University of Denver, has students learn an anti-American spoof of the Pledge of Allegiance that denounces the U.S. as a Republican-controlled bastion of injustice, all while spewing his own far-left brand of politics, according to current and former students.

"We’re very racist, we’re very repressive, we’re very Christian oriented, we don’t tolerate other kinds of thinking in this country.” - Charles Angeletti, professor at Metropolitan State University

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Pearl Harbor remembered...

Written by The Patriots Press on . Posted in National News

Publisher’s note:  To those remaining and aging survivors, what happened 73 years ago today might seem like yesterday.  On that day, 2335 military personnel and 68 civilians were killed, with many hundreds more wounded during an unprovoked attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy which was the catalyst that forced us into the already ongoing WWII.  The men and women of that Greatest Generation can never be thanked sufficiently or enough for their sacrifices.

That war was prosecuted and we prevailed, and there have been many battlegrounds since then.  We have fought in Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf, Afghanistan, Iraq, and many other places including our homeland.

Where we once had a resolve to vanquish our enemies and protect our way of life, the trend of the last several decades is to placate them in the mode of Neville Chamberlain.  We do this to the point that while most Americans support our troops and veterans, our government has systematically weakened our military and what it stands for.

One case in point.  On this day that we honor and remember that tragic day of 73 years ago, it comes to light that the memorial in Pearl Harbor is apparently being maintained as marginally as our troops and veterans.

Fox News:  PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii –  The USS Arizona is one of the nation's most hallowed sites, an underwater grave for more than 900 sailors and Marines killed when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor and sank their ship in 1941.

Now, it's the scene of alleged rampant mismanagement.

An internal report from the National Park Service, which operates a visitors' center for a memorial at the battleship, said tour companies sold tickets with the knowledge of park officials even though tickets are supposed to be free.

Another pointed to substandard maintenance, including scuffed museum walls that languished unrepaired and bird feces that wasn't cleaned.

The revelations in documents released last month come just before crowds gather at Pearl Harbor on Sunday for an annual ceremony remembering more than 2,400 sailors, Marines and soldiers killed 73 years ago.

"To watch the desecration of a very sacred, very important place was very disheartening," said John Landrysmith, a former park service guide and 41-year-old Iraq war veteran.

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Disney offended by God? Why Indeed...?!

Written by Fox News on . Posted in National News

Publisher’s note:  While I don’t know if this was intentional or not, even though I believe it has to be.  After all, websites are set up with whatever parameters the owner chooses and approves.  

Regardless, it is very consistent with Disney’s increasing trend towards becoming less than traditional and family friendly over the last twenty years or so.  It has certainly kept me away from the gates of the ‘Magic Kingdom.’

As an observer of world events, I recognize the thought process that goes into any company’s decision to appease specific groups, because business is business.  However, I will never understand why any company would chance alienating a much larger group during said appeasement in the name of political correctness.

Fox News:  It turns out you can give thanks for a lot of different folks on the Disney Channel website – but you can’t thank God.

I received a Facebook message on Sunday from Julie Anderson, of Angier, North Carolina, a town located about 30 miles from Raleigh.  Julie was writing to tell me about her daughter, Lilly.

Lilly celebrated her 10th birthday on Sunday. After church and a delicious lunch at the Golden Corral, the Andersons headed home – and Lilly made a beeline for the computer.

I do wonder what sort of message the Disney Channel is sending when they tell children that mentioning God in public is bad manners.

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Ferguson PD Officer Darren Wilson resigns

Written by Fox News on . Posted in National News

Publisher’s note:  In the end, resigning was the right thing for Darren Wilson to do.  Not because his actions were wrong, but because things can never be ‘normal’ in Ferguson, MO again…certainly not on the Police Department while he remains.  His friends, family, and co-workers wouldn’t be safe, and the department could never be effective.

There is no telling what the future holds for Mr. Wilson, however there is no doubt that his life will continue to be put under a micro-scope for the foreseeable future, and he will have to look over his shoulder for the rest of his life.  

He may be resigning, but if I were him, I’d keep wearing the bullet proof vest and the gun.  

Fox News:  Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot and killed teenager Michael Brown, has resigned from the Ferguson Police Department nearly four months after the confrontation that fueled protests in the St. Louis suburb and across the nation.

Wilson, 28, had been on administrative leave since the shooting on Aug. 9. His resignation was announced Saturday by one of his attorneys, Neil Bruntrager. The resignation was effective immediately, Bruntrager said.

"I have been told that my continued employment may put the residents and police officers of the City of Ferguson at risk, which is a circumstance that I cannot allow,” Wilson said in a resignation letter seen by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

“It was my hope to continue in police work, but the safety of other police officers and the community are of paramount importance to me. It is my hope that my resignation will allow the community to heal,” the letter read.

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