Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Veteran's Day 2015


I spent my adolescence in Kansas City, got married (and widowed) in Kansas City, got my first teaching job in Kansas City. Although it is not my place of birth, it is in every important respect my "home town."

One of the great things to see in Kansas City is the National World War I Museum and Memorial. Commonly referred to by locals as the Liberty Memorial, it is located south of Pershing Road across from historic Union Station and is adjacent to Hallmark's Crown Center complex.

View of Liberty Memorial from the south, Union Station just beyond.

I always thought it a bit odd that the only World War I Memorial in the country would be in Kansas City, not in Washington, D.C. There are plans underway to build a memorial to veterans of World War I in our nation's capital, but until then Kansas City is the place to go to honor those men and their sacrifice.

One of the peak experiences of my life came in the summer of 2011 when I got to take some students of mine to a national speech competition in Washington, D.C.

Actually, virtually all of the competition took place at various sites in Virginia (our hotel was in Manassas, for instance), but the tournament headquarters was in Washington, and on the Monday following the tournament's conclusion my students and I spent a day in the city, visiting such awesome spots as the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, the Washington Monument, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and other fascinating places.

I arranged the itinerary in such as way as to enable the kids to see the various official military memorials in the area. It was a truly educational experience for them, and I am grateful to have had the chance to spend time with them at these historic remembrances.

While there is not yet an official World War I Memorial in D.C., there is the Second Division Memorial.

When we visited the National World War II Memorial, of course the students posed for pictures under the "Atlantic" arch.

Opinions vary, but I have always found the Korean War Veterans Memorial to be quite moving. My dad was a Korean War veteran...

 Although controversial when it was first opened, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is incredibly powerful when seen in person. Unforgettable.

Today is the day we have officially designated to honor our nation's military veterans, including my dad...

For those veterans who have died, there is no more fitting tribute than "Taps," performed at the Arlington National Cemetery by SSG Jesse Tubb (summer) and SSG Drew Fremder (winter) of the United States Army Band:

Things That Make Me Happy: Gold Glove Edition

The 2015 Gold Glove Awards for Major League Baseball were announced yesterday, and my beloved Kansas City Royals were well-represented. One reason the Royals are the 2015 World Series Champions is that they have three Gold Glove winners on their team (along with four-time winner Alex Gordon, whose chances for a fifth straight award were damaged by his missing two months of the season with an injury), while no other team in baseball has more than two.

Starting All-Star Catcher and 2015 World Series MVP Salvador Perez won his third consecutive Gold Glove Award.

First Baseman Eric Hosmer also won his third straight Gold Glove Award.

Starting All-Star Shortstop and American League Championship Series MVP Alcides Escobar won his first Gold Glove Award.

Until Next Time...

In honor of Veteran's Day, today's send-off will be performances by bands representing all five of our military services. Enjoy...

The United States Air Force Ceremonial Brass Band:

The United States Army Band:

The United States Coast Guard Band:

The United States Marine Corps Band:

The United States Navy Band and Ceremonial Guard:


  1. Happy Veterans Day to your Dad!! Very enlightening about the WWI memorial in KC! I rooted for KC in the series because they were from the Midwest and my Alma Mater is Park University!

  2. Thanks so much, Carol!

    You were rooting for the best team in baseball! And Park University is of the prettiest campuses you'll ever see, too, as you well know!