Now it should come as no surprise to those of you who know me that my idea of a healthy lifestyle has always been to patiently wait for those lemons that life continually hands each of us, whereupon I would mix them with vodka and then tell everyone I'm simply doing a cleanse.
When last I left all of you back in early April, I had stupidly managed to fall out of bed, while half asleep, seriously injuring my back to the point that while prone on the floor yelling, to no one in particular, "I've fallen and I really can't get up." I had visions of John Lennon standing above me singing, "Instant Karma's finally got you...Gonna knock you right out of bed..." It was immediately (and painfully) obvious that, after 68 long years, my lower back had pulled a Roberto Duran and finally threw in the towel while shouting "No mas!" to the referee of life.
The good news is that after several trips to my family physician, an orthopedic surgeon, a pain management specialist, and a trip last week to St. John's Episcopal Hospital over in Far Rockaway for a lumbar epidural steroid injection, my back pain has been reduced markedly to the point where I am once again able to function with some semblance of normality.
That being said, it's that time of year again when I encourage all Broad Channel residents to take some time this coming weekend to wander up to Cross Bay Boulevard and view and support our town's annual Memorial Day Parade. Originally known as Decoration Day, Memorial Day (as it is now known) is a day of remembrance, which originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. This Sunday, May 27, the Broad Channel VFW will be hosting our community’s annual Memorial Day parade. This event is a testament to our town’s desire to honor those men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedom on this sacred day.
The parade will start at 1 p.m. with a wreath-laying ceremony at the 17th Road Park Flag Pole and then travel along Cross Bay Boulevard to the George Riekers Veterans Memorial Park for another wreath-laying and closing ceremonies. As always, our honored guests will be those veterans from St. Albans Hospital who will be joined by our own local veteran members of the Broad Channel VFW and American Legion, as well as elected officials and other community organizations.
Please keep in mind that fewer than 10 percent of Americans can claim the title “veteran.” While the phrase “uncommon valor was a common virtue,” has been so often repeated that it risks becoming a cliché, it is no less true. In 1789, George Washington said, “The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional as to how they perceive the veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their country.”
Please make it a point to spend a few moments of your time to walk up to Cross Bay Boulevard to view the parade this Sunday to show your support for our veterans and to express your appreciation for those veterans that have sacrificed their lives for our freedom.
After the parade, all of you are invited to the VFW Post on Shad Creek Road for a BBQ and a chance to both greet and thank our men and women who have served us so well and to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice so that they may not be forgotten.
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