Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wordier Wednesday

**For some reason this didn't post, so I'll post belatedly.

A friend of mine posted a wordless wednesday picture of her with one of her favorite veterans.
I like that idea. So I'll tell about my one of my favorite Veterans, my Grandpa Jim. He passed away during the December that I was pregnant with Chris. (I keep losing Grandpas when I'm pregnant, I better just hold off so we don't lose any more.)Anyway, Grandpa Jim came from a long line of Navy men, hundreds of years. The Bagg and Collins family have been in America a long time. Grandpa had the same buzz haircut for 80 years. He joined the Army when he was 18, when the cavalry still had horses. He worked the cavalry during WWII, and stayed with them while they moved from horses to tanks. Here pictured with my Dad, in 1951 when returned to the states after adopting him in Ireland and doing some time abroad.

He was Career Army, and stayed with them until the mid-70s. By the end there, he was stationed at the Pentagon. He retired. For 6 weeks. He couldn't take it. He started working at the Pentagon again, Civilian status, for another 25 years. He was 87 when he finally retired for real!
He was a cool head under pressure, he was in the Pentagon when it got hit on 9/11. He poked his head out of the office, took a look around, as my dad says, "realized no more work was getting done today" and headed home. He checked in with his boss, and hopped the LAST Train out of the pentagon before they shut the whole system down.

Here's the last photo I snapped of Grandpa, his 90th birthday party, when I made him a quilt, my first, The front was an american flag, but in place of stars there were the letters and the back was camo fleece.
He passed away in December 2005, and was buried with all the pomp and circumstance they could offer in Arlington Cemetary. Horses, carriage, 21 gun salute, the whole thing. I wasn't able to make it there, but I look forward to taking Chris to Arlington to find his Great-Grandpa's grave someday.