“This land is your land, this land is my land. From California to New York Island, from the Redwood Forest to the Gulf stream waters. This land was made for you and me.”

I am so glad men fought for the independence we experience today in the USA. It was declared July 4, 1776: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Today we experience freedom, power of choice, and love for all people equally. This independence allows us to go after our dreams, live out our faith, worship and pray, have freedom of speech, and vote. I personally have at least 4 special people to thank for their service to our nation. They are no longer on this earth.

  • Walt King, my wife’s father – He, as an artillery captain, survived a sinking ship, lived 76 days in a foxhole while enemy snipers were camouflaged high in jungle trees.
  • Spike, my fraternity big brother – He, as a pilot, was shot down from the skies over North Vietnam.
  • Donnie Sperl, my star shooting guard in Alaska – He, as a 19-year-old Army corporal casualty in Vietnam, was awarded a purple heart.
  • Matthew Fazzari, a coach at NBC Camps and Army scholarship recipient at Gonzaga University – He, as an Army First Lieutenant in Afghanistan, was killed while in a helicopter, leaving behind a wife and two young boys.

This land I love includes home. May my homeland live out the same values as my family home. We have no laws which force us to love each other, yet love leads family members to please the desires expressed in our home. I can say this land I love, called my home, gives me what I need to love, respect, and honor you. Home is where my heart beats at its best. You are welcome here as you love, respect, and honor others.