Thanks for serving

On this Memorial Day, we pay tribute to those who gave their lives in the service of our country.

A few years ago I photographed early morning services at small cemetery in our community. It’s an annual event, followed by a parade. Arriving before the participants, I strolled through the grounds, only about a quarter acre, and read the names on the head stones. Most names were of the early founders of the area.

But one stood out to me, a modest marker that reads “Unknown Soldier, Civil War.” I thought, what an odd place for an unknown soldiers grave. Usually, they would be interred in a National Cemetery. So I decided to ask around.

As it turns out, during the war the body of a Union soldier was washed up on the shore of Lake Erie, literally a stone’s throw away. No one knew where he came from or what unit he belonged to.

Although he didn’t die on some distant battlefield, I thank him for his service in helping unite the nation.