My Papaw didn’t talk about the war a lot. He preferred to tell me about his cows and Alabama football. But he had a tattoo going up his arm from his days in the Army, and sometimes I would crawl up in his lap and ask him about it. He was a WWII veteran, a man whose every breath demonstrated sacrifice for others. That sacrificial heart didn’t stop when the war was over. There was nothing Richard Taylor wouldn’t do to help another person.
Today, I’ll get teary looking at the flag, the vibrant colors of the red, white and blue. I’ll remember the flag they folded and gently handed to my Mamaw on that chilly November day we buried my beloved grandfather. I’ll remember the tattoo scrolling his arm, his skin tanned from all the hours in the pasture. I’ll look at the picture my Mamaw gave me last year and remember a man who created a legacy of loving God and loving people. A man who loved his Bible so much he asked for a new one every year for Christmas because his was tattered from being read so much. A man who taught me and so many others about giving and sacrifice. I’ll remember my favorite veteran, my favorite soldier. My Papaw.
To all our brave men and women who have sacrificed their lives. To all the moms and dads, sisters and brothers, daughters and sons who are apart from their families today because they are defending our freedom. To all our veterans, thank you. Those two words aren’t nearly enough, but thank you for giving everything. You are our heroes.