Today, as you all know, was veterans day. And, in Houston, we have a humdinger of a parade. I left at 12:25, the parade started at 11:30, and the sucker was still in full force.
There were lots of old cars and I took bunches of photos with my camera phone. They turned out pretty good for a camera phone, they were all nice an clear. It’s a small phone, so enlarging the photo doesn’t look all that great, but if you look at it in 4×6 mode, looks good.
The absolute highlight for me happened before the parade even begun. I went downstairs about 10 minutes early. I wanted to get a spot on a ledge that’s elevated just enough so that I could watch the parade over the heads of the people near the street.
All of a sudden I noticed a wirey older man who appeared about 85 years old. I looked at his hat and it read “Hellcat” and then had his aircraft carrier, of which I didn’t notice. “Hellcat” is nothing other than the F6F Fighter airplane used in the 2nd half of WWII in the pacific theater.
I said loud enough for him to hear me… “Hellcat! Are you a Hellcat fighter pilot?!?” He looked at me startled like, probably wondering how the heck this young woman knew about Hellcats, “Yes”. I said, “That is so Cool. I would like to shake your hand and thank you for your sacrifice!!” I then stuck out my hand and shook his hand. He gave me a good shake, not too firm and not too loosey-goosey He said “You’re Welcome”. Then, as he was walking away he said, “You gotta understand, I was scared to death!” to which I said, “No doubt, but you did it anyway and came out the other side” then I wished him good day and he was gone. I should have gotten his autograph. Next year, I am going to be prepared with a sharpie and paper for signing.
I’m in hog heaven… This is like like the top of the top of things that could happen. I had a serious case of hero worship. I couldn’t stop grinning for the whole afternoon… Woo-Wee… a Hellcat fighter pilot. He was likely an Ace. I’m totally and completely elated! I mean, here I am, a WWII nut & one of the best of the best fighter pilots of the Pacific Theater and entire WWII walks by and I get to shake his hand. It’s darned near close to shaking the presidents hand!!
And then, there were a bunch of Veterans, Marching Bands, ROTC marchers and vintage Automobiles, Tanks, Jeeps & Trucks. I’ll stop rattling along and let you see the show… they’re below.
© ‘Fizz’ 2010