The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The Strength Of A Nation

by Dessa Rodeffer, Quill Publisher/Owner

25 May 2005

What do we think when doors are locked at the bank, the post office, the schools and most businesses?

It forces us to stop our routine of work, to look around and to think just what could be the reason that everyone would close their business.... it must be a holiday!

Most of our holidays have a designated purpose - and it is especially true on MEMORIAL DAY.

It is a time set aside by our national leaders to reflect and honor those who have given their life to protect the union, our safety, and our freedoms in the USA.

We just do not seem to take time in today's busy world to be reverent and patriotic and thankful until the doors are locked and we are forced to reflect.

What can our accomplishments mean, if we don't have honor for those who have come before us to pave the way or to preserve the things we hold dear. How can we be inspired to pick up the torch of honor, if we don't take the time to appreciate those in our midst who have?

Tom Pullen, of Gladstone, is a good example, of what I call the strength of our nation. He is a man who has not forgotten his roots and what his upbringing has taught him.

He is an attorney, a Viet Nam Veteran, and now a Deputy Chief Immigration Judge for 53 courts throughout the United States. But he took time to come home this past week to speak to the last graduating class of his high school at Union. Tom was a graduate of the first class to graduate at Union in 1961. He reminded students of the importance of their small community heritage and the difference they can make in the world.

"Any deficiency in education can be overcome by hard work and study," he told them. He also explained of the many things he had learned from his small town upbringing that made him a responsible person and seeing his parents committment to the community.

It was on Memorial Day that he learned how each part of his heritage had shaped him and his community and that he had a responsibility to carry on.

"Whether you remain here or not, you will volunteer where needed, and your will vote to send decent and upright men and women to office." The strength of our nation is in our ability to teach and educate , in keeping our history lessons ever fresh in our minds, and in the minds of our children, and in our service to our nation.