by David "Wayne" King
If you take the time to look at the face of a Veteran, you may see sadness and weariness. Look further, look very close into their eyes, and you may see something else…pride…strength…the knowledge that they carry the weight of freedom that has been handed down to them by those who have long ago passed. Memorial Day carries with it celebration and memories. As time passes, those memories may fade into nothingness. We carry with us the responsibility to remember those fallen heroes, lest we forget the price of freedom. In a quiet area off the Hood Canal is the resting place of some who have been gone and almost forgotten save for a few members of the community.
Seabeck Cemetary houses almost 200 souls, six of which are Veterans from various wars. Decades of growth are being removed by a local historian, Fred Just. As his namesake would imply, Fred is doing what is right, acting on his principles by respecting those who made Seabeck our home. Fred gives his time and energy to restoring headstones and gravesites, and for those who ask, a tour of the cemetery with stories of those who made this their final resting place. On this weekend, Fred was joined by a small gathering of young men and their families, Cub Scout Pack 4537 from Crosby Community Club. The Cub Scouts walked through the cemetery with Fred as their tour guide. At the end of the tour, they returned to the grave sites of Veterans placing small U.S. Flags at the headstones. They finished their visit with a small invocation by their Cubmaster on the significance of remembering our Veterans.
“We stand here today to remember those who stood for us, and then fell for us. Behind me are those who gave up everything so that you could have anything. Remember them when you see the flag. Remember them when you pledge your allegiance to the Flag that they fought to protect.”
As the Cub Scouts pledged allegiance to the Flag, their backs straight, their salute unwavering and their words strong and clear, they pledged silently in their hearts to never forget the Veterans resting before them.
On this day of decorations, this Memorial Day, remember those who gave everything so that we may have anything.