“Memorial Day is a special day to take pause and pay tribute to those brave men and women who lost their lives defending our country and preserving our way of life.” By Cindy Hyde-Smith
This week I join our nation’s recognition of those who served and died to defend our country’s freedom and the freedom of others around the world. One of my joys of blogging is having the means of saying “Thank You” to those who sacrificed the most…their lives.
“Friends of Copey” who have been around a while know this is the time I pay special honor to four young men who joined the military following high school graduation during the mid 60’s. Three were killed in battle. The fourth while on home on leave, was murdered by a civilian. Losing my classmates and friends became far too common during the time of the Viet-Nam Conflict.
I saluted my brothers; Michael Charles of Bristol, Virginia; Daniel Watkins of Meadowview, Virginia; Frank Campbell, Jr. of Chilhowie, Virginia; and Kenny Delaney of Kingsport, Tennessee.
Today, you are honored and will always be remembered.
These men were close high school friends, football teammates, and fellow students. Their early deaths were very devastating to those of us who had shared our high school years together. And, there were other classmates and acquaintances who also died during the Viet-Nam conflict. All these deaths made the war as real as it could be for us who had not yet joined the military service.
Their are other benefits from being a blogger. There are many “Friends” all over who keep me informed about news they hear about Aunt Katherine. I have learned about many of Aunt Katherine’s honors first from “Friends” and not family. The latest pertains to a new publication “My Remarkable Journey” by Katherine Johnson and her two daughters; Joylette Hylick and Katherine Moore. I have the audible version narrated by Robin Miles.
I am only about half way into the audible version and it is outstanding! Easily, this publication is on the same level as “Hidden Figures” which should be in my humble opinion, a national treasure and a must read for students. This latest addition is Katherine Johnson’s memoir. Her life from the beginning is narrated and as I listen, it feels like Aunt Katherine is speaking to me.
Here is a confession and my bias. I am family and among some of the key features of this accounting of Aunt Katherine’s life are the very personal and deeply oriented family profiles provided. All of us connected with Aunt Katherine as family members and close friends will enjoy and personally relate to the people and places in the detailed back stories of many of the events we are with limitations, familiar with.
I strongly encourage all family and friends, and certainly “Friends of Copey” to get a copy of this book or audio version and travel with Aunt Katherine as she shares her remarkable journey during her life.
As family members…this is a “must buy…must read or listen” to learn about our family history, especially my generation. Our kids and grandkids should also be informed. This is rare as most families do not have such an opportunity to know this kind of family history .
Copey Learning Center..!
News from Copey indicate public school is closed again because of the upsurge in the virus. However, education continues on-line for the Copey Learning Center students. Students are also being selected to attend the Emory & Henry College’s on-line Summer Scholars Program.
I will return to the news from Copey next week with more detail. Stay tuned as we continue to support vigorously the mission of English education.
Marty was a model husband, father, son, brother, and cousin. He was greatly admired by his life-long friends and a role-model for many others. His love of family and his community was established and well known and highly regarded. As I honor my fallen military classmates and friends on Memorial Day, I also pay honor to Marty’s civilian life and community service as well. Marty…you are missed.