” Blessed are those who can give without remembering and receive without forgetting.”

~ Author unknown

Thanksgiving with my family has always been meaningful to me. My earliest boyhood memories of our celebration included my sisters, paternal grandfather, my dad’s two brothers, along with their wives and children, as well as other aunts and various cousins. Ours was always a full house.

My dad met and fell in love with my mom in England during World War II, and brought her to America to be his bride. What a joyous holiday Thanksgiving was for him and his young wife, as they gathered together with his two brothers and their families. My grandfather was especially grateful for his three sons’ safe return from the war; back home in the United States, he proudly watched them prosper and raise children of their own.

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As he ceremoniously carved our Thanksgiving turkey, oven roasted to a golden brown, my grandfather reminded us that it symbolized the realization of the American dream, the one experiment in individual freedom, where we were a part of this land of opportunity, the land of milk and honey.

These ideals were taught to us at home and in school. We began each school day with the Pledge of Allegiance. “One nation, under God…” Sadly, we dare not utter these words today for fear of offending someone. Yes, it is hard to imagine. It seems little thought is given to the sacrifices made by those early settlers who persisted through the early years of our rich American history, and yet we should give thanks and we should be aware of all those many sacrifices.

This is not the beginning of the holiday shopping season, my friends, it is a time to spend with your family and loved ones, to give thanks for their presence in your life. To realize how fortunate we are to be in this place called America, to reflect on our history, the good we have done and continue to do in the world. To offer thanks for the numerous blessings we enjoy as Americans, blessings others can only dream about. Let us hold strong to our American ideals, to pass them on to our children and grandchildren, with great pride and many thanks to our forebears.

We wish you all a very joyous and Happy Thanksgiving.

God Bless America