My grandfather was a veteran of World War II. He didn't talk about it much, but we all knew that he had served in the Navy as a SeaBee, and among other things had helped build airstrips on Iwo Jima during and after the battle. I wish he had told us more, because last Tuesday he left this world.
My parents and grandmother requested a Naval Honor Guard at graveside, and they played Taps and presented the flag to my grandmother. When they gave it to her, they spoke a few words to her, and they brought me to tears. I would like to paraphrase them here in commemoration of all those that have died in service to our country:
On behalf of the President of the United States and a grateful nation, please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one's service to this Country.