TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: How is Your Holiday? Mine Sort of Bittersweet

Re: How is Your Holiday? Mine Sort of Bittersweet
31 May 2005 10:20:28 -0700

TELECOM Digest Editor wrote:

> To the USA readers, how goes your Memorial Day weekend holiday? You
> may recall here I mentioned a couple weeks ago about the relevance and
> pertinence for many of us in the 'Amber Alert' program. That really
> hit home for me about a week ago regards my younger sister when we
> _finally_ after some intensive searching discovered she was _still_ in
> Orlando, Florida where she wound up after having left home at the age
> of 16 almost thirty years ago. We got a phone call from her (now 23
> year old) son about a week ago. It seems she had died -- on the
> street, the usual 'home' for homeless people -- she had been cremated
> and the ashes given to her son, as 'next of kin' on March 5, 2005, in
> other words about three months ago.

I'm sure all of your readers extend their condolences for the loss of
your sister. Our best wishes for the best kind of closure possible
under the circumstances.

> So how was your holiday weekend?

Our town has a Memorial Day parade every year. It concludes in front
of my complex where a gunsalute is fired, prayers are recited, and a
speech made thanking the veterans for their service. The band plays
taps then the Star Spangled Banner.

I find it moving because it was the sacrifice of veterans of the past
and today that makes things like this newsgroup possible -- where we
can speak our minds freely and be as critical as we want of anything
we want. Contrary to the hysterics, they do not come and take any of
us away for what we say.

Last year we had a town councilman who was upset over the Iraq war.
During the Pledge of Allegiance, he remained seated, back to the flag,
arms folded defiantly across his chest. Boy did that anger a lot of

But that's the beauty of our country! The councilman is free to sit
if he so chooses. And the voters are free to turn him out of office
or retain him however they so choose. We must never forget that.

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: Thanks very much for your kind words
about my sister, Katherine Eleanor Townson Jones. That girl had a
very rough life, so radically different than my own. If/when her ashes
arrive here from Orlando, I think my mother wants to have some sort
of memorial service. (We were hoping that would have happened over the
holiday weekend when my brother and his wife were in town, but no such
luck.) Katherine's son, 23-year old Justin Jones -- himself a street
person -- (after all, like mother, like son I guess) was convinced in
his last phone call to me a couple days ago to deliver the ashes to
'a good friend of his' who promised they would be sent in the post
here, ASAP. Supposedly, Justin is coming to visit also, if he can
raise the money for a Greyhound Bus ticket. We will see what happens,
but I am not going to have a brass marching band waiting for this
new 'guest of honor' -- if he shows up, that is. Our hope had been the
ashes would have shown up sometime last week whether Justin did (show
up) or not. We were disillusioned, to say the least. My brother, the
relatively rich self-employed commercial artist from Chicago has
already indicated that if Justin does get sick and tired of the drug,
prostitution, homeless lifestyle in Florida he lives in and decides
on a fresh start, Uncle Pat (hey! that's me!) should give him the
Eliza Doolittle and Professor treatment here and "By George, I think
he's got it!" routine in the hopes the child will grow up amounting to
something. More news if anything significant to report.

Here in Independence there was also a Memorial Day commemoration. But
my brother, his wife and kid and myself took mother down to the
cemetery in Coffeyville where dad is at, and we got in on the final
portion of the VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) commemoration at the
cemetery there. It was a lot like the one you saw, and the reasons,
etc were about the same. Thanks again for your kind words. PAT]

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