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Memorial Day, 2021

Photo submitted by: Candace Hildebrand McCorkell

Tough day in the The News Bunker. Lots of choices. Fly the World War I-issue Memorial Day Flag, its World War II counterpart or the Korean War (Conflict) banner? All have a lot of family significance and… memories.

Which, in essence, is the point behind this day, right? Right.

We started looking for an appropriate Memorial Day photo to represent us here on the site a week or so ago, but fretted over our choices – too maudlin, too stark, too unrecognizable.

Enter Candace McCorkell, a reader who went through a lot this year and whose own family – the younger side of it, at least – gathered for a memorable and very American Memorial Day photo not too long after the end of World War I, judging by the battle trophies the kids used as props.

Candace asked if we’d consider using her family’s photo and, after a few seconds hesitation where we realized it was pretty much perfect for today, we said “yer darn right.”

A patriotic family group, kids bearing flags, a drum, and a Prussian officer’s sword, wearing newspaper “fore and aft” hats or a real German pickelhaube brought back from the cratered fields of Europe, healthy faces bright and shining and facing the peaceful interlude their country would have before it was plunged into another World War.

Candace can further explain the stories behind the photo if she wishes. It’s an American story, perfect for a Memorial Day.


  1. What are we remembering, honoring today? Past glories and sacrifices to be sure? Not so much focus on imperialism, hubris, and wartime atrocities on a day of remembrance; that is to be expected. Perhaps those bloody ambitions can be forgiven, but what a mockery it is to praise the selfless sacrifice of so many in service of an historically unique vision of democracy when so many today do not support that very vision, that common cause, any more. American democracy seems to be in a state of emergency this Memorial Day, but the story is relegated to page 6. Let’s all have a beer and watch the game.

  2. We used to play with the Japanese medals my dad brought back from the war when we played dress up. He never told us how he got them.

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