Out Of Our Past
Tracing Our Bosque County Roots
by LaDawn Garland
September 19, 2001

I sit here stunned, along with the rest of America, this week following the horrible attack that has been aimed at our nation. I have watched as terrorist have tried to bring a great and glorious nation to it's knees.  And as days passed I began to realize that they don't know our people as I do.  They don't know that we are in fact a huge extended family, and as a family we may bicker amongst ourselves, but let someone else step in and threaten
us and you will see a united front the likes of which the world has probably never seen before.

I watched our children, dig out their change and precious saved dollars from their "piggy banks" and bring them eagerly to donate to the Red Cross Relief Fund. I have seen people stand patiently in long lines for hour after hour just to donate blood in the hope that it may save the life of a stranger.

I have seen a local church designate 5 acres of land as a Memorial Park in honor of the victims in New York and Washington, D.C., where they will place ribbons in honor of each individual person so tragically lost in this insanity. I have seen our elected government officials, so separated and divided, only a week ago, stand united and willing to work together, in what ever way, to bring this threat to an end.

I have watched the footage of our Heroes, the firefighters, policeman, and rescuers who work ceaselessly trying to recover anyone who may still be trapped in the wreckage of the World Trade Center. Their tremendous determination and dedication, with no concern for their own safety, exhausted but still hopeful, should strike terror in the hearts of our enemies, because this is what America is all about. Knowing that we are an entire nation of people such as these should make anyone aware that there will be no "beating down" of this country and it's people.

But I think the most important thing I have seen, is the awakening of a generation, we have taken our freedoms and safety for granted. Those before us, remember war and the threats of war and the importance of what America stands for. But our generation, and our children now, have been sheltered, we've never had to consciously think about what America meant to us. We have said our Pledge of Allegiance, almost by rote, knowing what the words
meant, but how often did we consciously feel the meaning behind the words. We flew our flags on holidays and in memorial, but now we fly them proudly in unity and love of our country. We will stand united, stronger than ever before.  No longer will our flags and pledges just be symbols, our patriotism, strength and determination have been awakened and we have now joined a long line of our ancestors as a new generation has come to know the true meaning and the pride in being an American. I have watched as darkness descended upon us and watched as a nation and a people we have come shining through, burning brighter and stronger than ever.

I AM THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
I am the flag of the United States of America.
My name is Old Glory.
I fly atop the world's tallest buildings.
I stand watch in America's halls of justice.
I fly majestically over institutions of learning.
I stand guard with power in the world.
Look up and see me.
I stand for peace, honor, truth and justice.
I stand for freedom.
I am confident.
I am arrogant.
I am proud.
When I am flown with my fellow banners,
my head is a little higher,
my colors a little truer.
I bow to no one!
I am recognized all over the world.
I am worshipped - I am saluted.
I am loved - I am revered.
I am respected - and I am feared.
I have fought in every battle of every war for more then 200 years.
I was flown at Valley Forge, Gettysburg, Shiloh and Appomattox.
I was there at San Juan Hill, the trenches of France, in the Argonne
Forest, Anzio, Rome and the beaches of Normandy, Guam. Okinawa, Korea and
KheSan, Saigon, Vietnam know me.
I was there.
I led my troops,
I was dirty, battleworn and tired, but my soldiers cheered me.
And I was proud.
I have been burned, torn and trampled on the streets of countries I have helped set free.
It does not hurt, for I am invincible.
I have been soiled upon, burned, torn and trampled on the streets of my country.
And when it's by those whom I've served in battle- it hurts.
But I shall overcome - for I am strong.
I have slipped the bonds of Earth and stood watch over the uncharted frontiers of space from my vantage point on the moon.
I have borne silent witness to all of America's finest hours.
But my finest hours are yet to come.
When I am torn into strips and used as bandages for my wounded comrades on the battlefield,
When I am flown at half-mast to honor my soldier, Or when I lie in the trembling arms of a grieving parent at the grave of their fallen son or daughter, I am proud.
MY NAME IS OLD GLORY - LONG MAY I WAVE DEAR GOD IN HEAVEN - LONG MAY I WAVE

My deepest sympathies, thoughts and prayers go out to all who have suffered
in this terrible tragedy, may God bless and keep you all.
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A large collection of old newspapers from Bosque County dating back to the late 1800's are available for research at the Bosque County Collection in Meridian as well as an amazing assortment of items recording the history of our county.Don't forget that the Bosque County Collection is now open on Saturdays for research.  For information and a look at some of the wonderful research items available visit their website at http://www.htcomp.net/bcc.

If you are researching your Bosque County families online be sure to visit Bosque Co. TXGenWeb site at http://www.rootsweb.com/~txbosqu2/ you'll find a wonderful collection of information provided by other researchers, it's quite possible you might just find other researchers there researching your same family lines. This column will also be available weekly at this site.

If you would like to submit a story or query about your Bosque County
family, as well as information on reunions, to this column please mail them
to: LaDawn Garland c/o The Bosque County News
P.O. Box 343
Meridian, TX, 76665
fax to (254) 435-6335 or
email me at garland@htcomp.net