Patriotic Summer

Summer, my favorite season is finally here! The time of year we get to celebrate the many freedoms that have been afforded Americans at the sacrifice of so many. Everyone flies the flag of our country high and with pride. This patriotic season starts with Memorial Day, followed by Flag Day and then Independence Day, my FAVORITE holiday of the year.

Through all of these celebrations, our family traditions include recognizing the brave men and women who have served in our armed forces. Those who fought for the flag, those who fought for freedom and independence, those who fought to conquer world terrorism; all are honored.

Memorial Day, formerly known as Decoration Day was established in Waterloo, New York on May 5, 1866 and honored soldiers who gave their life while in military service. In 1882, the name was changed to Memorial Day and as a nation, we have continued to observe Memorial Day on the last Monday of May since 1968.

Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States which occurred on June 14, 1777, by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. My brother Bill celebrates his birthday on this day.

Independence Day, the Fourth of July, has been celebrated in our country since the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. My cousin Shirley shares her birthday with that of our nation and also sports natural RED hair!

Through the generations, family members have volunteered for active service. Sgt. John Andrew Davidsizer, Company A. of the First Pennsylvania Volunteer Calvary is often remembered first. He was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroism displayed on April 5, 1865 when he captured the confederate flag at Paine’s Crossroads Virginia. Sgt. Davidsizer survived the civil war and lived to be 79 years old. John was my great-great grandfather.

Like so many, my father, Robert Carr, was a Private First Class in the Army during WWII. He served in the South Pacific, where he was awarded the Bronze Star. He contracted spinal meningitis, encephalitis, tuberculosis, diphtheria, pneumonia and cholera. My father remained paralyzed from the waist down for ten years but never once felt sorrow over his condition, actually quite the opposite. He would share that his wheelchair literally opened doors. He once told me, “I will never forget the dead. I cannot forget the dead. They are the true heroes. You cannot forget them either.”

As you celebrate your summer with family and friends, please remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. For, in the words of my Dad, the men and women who have died for our country are the true heroes.

Pines Village Retirement Communities is proud to be the recipient of a matching grant from the Porter County Community Foundation. Our Board of Directors has dedicated the funds to a newly established endowment “Veterans Charitable Fund” which will ensure that programs for our veterans here at Pines Village, and those in the greater community will receive recognition and support through patriotic ceremonies and education programs. I hope you will consider a gift to this worthy fund where your contribution will be matched dollar for dollar. Please contact me at for information.

May you enjoy a wonderful summer and keep the red, white and blue flying high!