Holidays in Appalachia

Veterans Day In Appalachia

Veterans Day in Appalachia

Veterans Day in Appalachia is school hallways filled with those who served shaking each others hands while looking slightly uncomfortable with the attention they’re receiving.

Veterans Day in the mountains of Appalachia is flags floating along porch railings and mailboxes. It’s stiff new mini flags being waved in unison by the crowd. It’s small and large gatherings in town squares where monuments were built for those who never came home.

Veterans Day in Appalachia is fellow comrades teasing each other about the young soldiers shown in the photos flashing on the screen at the front of the room. It’s laughter ending in teary eyes and solemn faces as their talk reminds them of what they went through.

Veterans Day in Appalachia is children standing on risers singing of a love of country with voices that get louder on the easy parts and fade away on the high hard parts. It’s special breakfasts, dinners, and suppers served lovingly to those who served for the good of us all.

If you’re a Veteran – I THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE.


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  • Reply
    Rev. RB
    November 11, 2016 at 11:19 pm

    Sounds just wonderful. Wish I’d been there.
    Prayers for those who served, those serving and those yet to serve, and remembering their families with prayer too, filled with worry and often struggling valiantly to keep the home fires burning brightly for their return.
    God bless.
    USMC – 1969-72

  • Reply
    November 11, 2016 at 3:17 pm

    You can always say the things folks want to hear, and I thank you for that. All our Veterans are “our greatest generation.”
    I called Donna Lynn from home today and told her “Thanks for playing such good,
    Christian Music and celebrating Veterans Day. Then she played a song by Ray and Pap about helping some Pilgrim along the way. That reminded me of mama’s mama feeding all those Hobos during and before The Great Depression. …Ken

  • Reply
    November 11, 2016 at 2:49 pm

    Washington may not celebrate our veterans, but is small town USA there is heavy traffic, parades, and everybody posting pictures on FB of their beloved family vets. I am sure somebody Is busy placing flags at vet’s graves at our cemetery at Hickory Ridge. Respect and patriotism are alive and well in my neck of the woods. There is comfort in these traditions during these troubled times.

  • Reply
    November 11, 2016 at 2:32 pm

    One of the things done at the school where I taught was to have the students go back as many generations as they could and find out which relatives served and where. They were then given a star on which to write the relatives name, branch(es) of service, rank, place(s) of service, and years of service. The stars then lined the hallways. If those organizing them had time, they were organized by “war/conflict” or peacetime. Having greatX4 uncles who served on each side of the civil service always gave me pause for thought. The school only had relatives serving in US Military but think, especially with the original intent that the day be dedicated to world peace, having students recognize relatives serving for other countries – including our recent immigrants- would be worthwhile as well.

  • Reply
    Garland Davis
    November 11, 2016 at 12:17 pm

    Today, we don’t think about the dead in Flanders Field or the Belleau Wood. We don’t wear poppies, although if you happen to pass a VFW post or stand they will offer you one to wear. We do celebrate the men and women who have served this nation from its inception to today. We recall their deeds, their sacrifice and their devotion to duty. The citizen soldier who served and serves us still.
    I fear for the future of Veterans Day, as it has slowly become a day of “freebies” and “bennies,” more than a day of recalling the service and no longer a day “dedicated to the cause of world peace,” as it was originally intended.

  • Reply
    George Pettie
    November 11, 2016 at 10:51 am

    In sad ironic contrast to patriotic Appalachia, Veteran’s Day is nearly invisible here in DC. Nothing in the newspaper, except all the Veteran’s Day Sale ads. Few extra flags flying on the streets, in yards or on homes. No one even mentioning it. The only clues are the closed government offices and banks. Of course, The evening news on TV will show the president laying the wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier across the river in Arlington Cemetery. But that’s about it.
    I’m just glad to have come home in one piece from four years in a war. I reflect often on those who didn’t make it back alive. On behalf of all of us, thank you, Tipper, for your words of appreciation.

  • Reply
    Eva Nell Mull Wike, PhD
    November 11, 2016 at 10:28 am

    Tipper: The saddest veteran post I ever read is on a commemorative military POST on the corner of the SQUARE in Hayesville! That military person, who is HONORED there, is the only Clay County Soldier killed in the Vet Nam War! Thank the good LORD, my two brothers (Donald and David) survived!
    Hope your DAY is sunny! Today I will be at a “FIDDLER OF THE MOUNTAINS” BOOK EVENT (2:00 til 8:00), as well as tomorrow (10:00 til 8:00) and the next day, (Noon til 5:00) just off I-75 at Merchant’s Road in Knoxville. I HOPE we will sell MANY copies of “Fiddller” at this event! Anyway the weather is going to be perfect!
    If somebody would tell MISS DOLLY PARTON about Uncle Johnny’s book, I’ll bet she would want a copy of “Fiddler” for her Library! We are coming down to the LAST ‘go around’ for marketing my LAST ‘prize-winning’ book.
    The “Matheson Cove” has been sold out a LONG TIME. But recently somebody posted a copy of “The Cove” for sale for $400.00. Dah!
    Eva Nell

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    November 11, 2016 at 10:16 am

    I recall what the bible has to say about Moses who through faith forsook his easy and pleasant life in Egypt out of respect for “greater riches” and selflessly served only to not personally receive the reward. Veterans served in some measure for faith in America and Americans and the ideals of it and them. And to every degree to which they did, they earned honor as representing what is highest and best in the human spirit. The veterans among us have a fellowship forged in the fires of struggle that none who have not served (among whom I am one) cannot truly know nor intrude upon, so I will not try but simply say with Tipper, thank you and bless you for your service.

  • Reply
    Michael Cass
    November 11, 2016 at 9:11 am

    Well-written, Tipper: good details.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    November 11, 2016 at 8:53 am

    I remember Pap wearing his Marine hat. It is amazing when you get together with a group of vets. You hear one say I was in the Navy and another one say I was in the army but you always hear the others say I am a Marine.
    It is ingrained forever. Thank God for our Vets.

  • Reply
    anita griffith
    November 11, 2016 at 7:58 am

    I meant to say I was in the Army 1968-1971.

  • Reply
    anita griffith
    November 11, 2016 at 7:54 am

    U.S.Army 1968-1969.Vietnam 69-70.Really glad we are going to rebuild our military.

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