Monday, May 30, 2011

Saturday Centus - The Legacy of Heroes...

I watch the parade…unfurled flags, drums beating rhythm for the pound and prance of spit-shined, boot-clad feet.

My canvas tote of toiletries and socks weigh heavy against my heart as well as my shoulder.

Toward the back of the crowd, where the unwashed and unshaven gather, I approach a 60-something gray man sitting in a battered wheelchair. “Brother, can you use some socks? Some toiletries?”

Too late, I realize he is missing both legs from the knee down.

I raise my eyebrows and gently ask him, “Viet Nam?”

He shrugs and holds out a shaky hand for the legacy of heroes…in his case, toothpaste.


This post is linked to week 56 of Saturday Centus. The prompt is in bold. To read other offerings, just click here.

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16 comments:

Judie said...

They serve our country. Some die, some come home maimed physically and mentally. They should be treated like the heroes that they are for as long as they live.

Ames said...

I agree with Judie. What breaks my heart is that they are either forgotten or treated as a burden to society because of their injuries. They gave so much that we could be free. We should all return the respect and appreciation.
This has been a very stimulating prompt this week Jenny! Hugs!~Ames

Unknown Mami said...

Sobering.

Sandy said...

Chills....and words that I hope I never forget......

Rek said...

Beautiful and moving picture...it is sad who fight for a then rightful cause are treated as though they don't exist...such waste of lives...you brought out the misery and despondency to the fore.

Donnie said...

That evoked such strong visual images. May we never forget out veterans, deceased and our active duty military.

Ms. A said...

My Grandfather would have opted for the toothpaste. He lost both legs.

Pat Tillett said...

Very moving and thought provoking Jenny...
What you described is a crying shame!
Have a good week my friend.

Dazee Dreamer said...

That was so beautiful. I feel especially sorry for the Vietnam vets that never got the respect they deserved when they came home.

Nonna Beach said...

Perfect and well done Jenny !!!

My Hubs is a Vietnam vet...3 tours over there. When he came home, there were no welcomes, gratitude or kindness shown except by other service members and their families and they were called every bad name in the book !

upinthecosmos said...

My dad was a Viet Nam vet & it haunted him all of his days. No physical injuries but mentally he was maimed for life. So sad. Great write.

Gattina said...

Instead of celebrating dead "heroes" with parades etc. The government should give all this money to the heroes who survived !
Very true post !

Keda said...

The real legacy of heroes.

Christy said...

very well written, it's like I was there. also makes me look at it differently

Sue said...

Good reminder that we need to do more for our veterans. They deserve better from us.

Excellent Centus, Jenny.

=)

cj Schlottman said...

Geez, Jenny,

You ripped out my heart and stomped it flat. Your visual post is a reminder that there is none among us who is untouched by the ravages of war. We may not have wounds of our own, but we see them in others if we open our eyes and really see. Thanks for the reminder.

Namaste..........cj