Remembering the Veterans on Memorial Day


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Each Memorial Day as we honor our Veterans, I spend time with my AFSCME Brothers and Sisters at the Connecticut VA in Rocky Hill.  My Union has been doing a Memorial Day Picnic for the Veterans for ten years now.

But before that, I think back to one of my best friends,  Jimmy Flynn, we lived close enough to each other to walk to school each morning.  With our last names both beginning with F, it meant we were in the same homeroom.

Beyond that we played football together as guard and center, he was class president and I was vice-president.  We had an intramural basketball team, the Bubbly  Five along with Carozza, Mcclellan, Hankal and Hillen.  We did the things friends do, double dating and going to the Bristol McDonalds.  In 8th grade our job was to raise the Flag each morning.  Junior year he moved to Danbury.  We kept in touch as best kids do.  We even managed to have a dinner together as we moved into adulthood.

I remember much  of this in detail as any new memories stopped 45 years ago this month when S/Sgt James Flynn was killed in Viet Nam.  Missed and still remembered.

I am grateful for the family, classmates, and friends and all those who made it back.  Peace.

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I am going to post some pictures and let them do most of the talking.

Volunteers cook and serve the Veterans and family members who come by  along with the VA staff.

The grills are going all the time

The grills are going all the time


Plumbers by Day BBQ giants for the Vets

Plumbers by Day BBQ giants for the Vets on the weekend



Tables and tents are set up on the grounds for dining.

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More food and entertainment.


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The Band for the day

The Band for the day




The Department of Corrections presented the colors.

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It has been a nice way to say Thank You.

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It is  a day that many enjoy.   Young Veterans from the present conflicts/wars are at the VA as well.  Those my age of course remember our parents their WW II service but it is many from our generation that are the Viet Nam era veterans.


Keeping the memories alive help honor those who served and keep those that did not return with us.

About bluesbeatnews52

Blues columnist writing a weekly column dedicated to the Blues. The only column of its kind in a commercial (paid subscription) newspaper. Column appears in the Middletown Press, Bristol Press, Torrington Register-Citizen, and the New Britain Herald. Forcella has served on the Board of Directors of the Blues Foundation representing the Journalism constituency. Served on the Board of Directors Connecticut Blues Society as Past President and Past Editor of newsletter. Recipient: Keeping the Blues Alive award in Journalism from the Blues Foundation. Has contributed both writing and photos to nationnal blues publications.

One response to “Remembering the Veterans on Memorial Day

  1. Ed Stack

    Your remembrance of Jimmy Flynn is very touching. Most of us have had similar experiences with family and friends. It is unfortunate that the politicians don’t seem to feel the same pain.

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