Memorial Day, I always find this a contemplative weekend anyway but today was special. First of all reader Shaun “Hooter” Daniels and his tribe came by to spend a couple days at the spacious Estancia Villa. We had a wonderful weekend, barbecuing, enjoying premium beer and scotch and cigars while solving most of the world’s problems. Neither Shaun or I is a veteran though both of us have been profoundly impacted by them. I was giving that impact a lot of thought this morning after Shaun and family headed back behind enemy lines. I was out jogging and later riding our mare and considering Memorial Day when it really struck me how much my life has been affected by those who have served our country.
As a young boy growing up, I learned early on that my daddy had done his part in WWII by fighting in the Pacific. Dad hit five beaches with the 32nd Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division and was twice wounded by the Japanese. My dad was one of my heroes. The others were my brothers Paco and Rick, both of whom enlisted during the Vietnam War, Paco into the Marines and Rick into the Navy. At the tender age of five, I was writing letters to Paco, somewhere around Quang Tri or Da Nang. Mostly those letters consisted of pictures I had drawn of what I thought were A-4 Skyhawks pounding enemy positions. I guess you could call it my own small contribution of air support to a mud Marine doing what he thought best when his country called.
My father died when I was young so I never got to prod him for tales of his service but thankfully around that time, Shaun moved into town. Shaun’s daddy is another veteran who served his nation for some 35 years. Shaun’s dad was a man who I looked up to and I was almost as happy when he was in port as his kids because I would often go over Shaun’s house and listen to stories from Mr. Daniels. Nowadays some liberal psychotherapist would say I was transferring my need for a father figure or some such crapola. Maybe I just respected men who loved America and didn’t flinch when called. Anyways, life went on and of course, some of my best friends became veterans themselves, so on this Memorial Day, I just wanted to thank each of them for their service. I know that I’m going to forget somebody and I’m sorry, but know that you have all touched my life and I wanted to thank you here…Benny Garcia, Sean Mannix, Mike Edwards, Larry “Bull” Smith, “Spider” Dan Stanfield, David Paul Anderson, Richard “Bear” Powell, Bob, John England, J.R., Mark Chaney, Todd Shipley, Jay Brown, Sean Garlock and so many more time just doesn’t permit. I’m sometimes asked why I’m such a conservative ideologue in my beliefs. Well I suppose there are two answers to that. One is that I am knowledgeable about history, and knowing history tends to make you more grounded and less idealistic, you understand human history and human nature and its effect on people and cultures. Answer number two is simply this, maybe I just don’t want the sacrifices made by all of those who I’ve just mentioned to be squandered by a bunch of self-serving, narcissistic politicians and power hungry leftwing ideologues that have no understanding of the Constitution of the United States, much less taken an oath to defend it.
Smilin' Paul Villa U.S. Senate 2010
Proud Member of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy and 2 SUV Family