KOOL Celebrates Vets This Memorial Day Weekend
This Memorial Day Weekend KOOL Jocks wanted to take some time to tell you about what Memorial Day means to them.
Art Garcia – U.S. Marines, Casa Grande
For many, Memorial Day is a day of gathering with family and friends. There are usually watersports/activities involved, vacations (or staycations), barbecues, picnics and just an opportunity to take an extra day off from a hectic work week.
But for some, Memorial Day has another meaning… remembering our heroes and military veterans who have served our country in one way or another – fighting for our freedom.
There are many heroes I’d love to recognize on this holiday, but there are so many to name! One veteran that I’d like to recognize is a KOOL listener named, Art Garcia, from Casa Grande. Since being on KOOL FM, Art has called numerous times requesting some of his favorite KOOL hits. These were songs he used to listen to during his tour of duty, in Vietnam. He’s fond of Martha & The Vandellas and The Supremes, just to name a few. I know the music brings back some emotional memories – both good and bad, for him.
Art has told me countless times how much he appreciates the music we play and I know that Memorial Weekend is usually a somber time for him. He’s even mentioned, in brief, how when times were really tough out there, the music always made him and his buddies forget the fact they were at-war and more importantly – remember the good times.
Thank you for your service, Art. We celebrate you, as a hero, and thank you and all of our hard-working soldiers and veterans.
There is not one day that goes by that I do not look at the American Flag and think about how great our country is. Each day at 12 noon, I play the “Noon Salute”. Local school band playing the National Anthem.
Listeners have called, written to the station, stopped me at an event, sent letters to the schools to express their gratitude for the “Noon Salute”. I am proud to play this each day at noon.
I am proud to be an American, and I am forever grateful to those who have served our country past present and future. I am forever grateful to those who have given the ultimate sacrifice to allow me and my family to live in freedom and to be a part of this great country. To those serving, I thank you.
To those who have served, I thank you. To those who have lost loved ones serving our country, please know that my family is forever in your debt. I was married to my beautiful wife, Sandra on the military base on Coronado Island in San Diego. I have played many DJ gigs and dances at the Ft. McCoy military base in Sparta, Wisconsin. This weekend is special.
This weekend is longer than a weekend, it 24/7-365. God bless this great country!
After seeing the international headlines each day, we should all realize just how fortunate we are to live in the United States of America. It’s a place where we are free to express our opinions, and pursue our dreams without fear of retaliation.
I hope that we also remember how we got those freedoms, because they didn’t come cheap. Many brave men and women gave the ultimate sacrifice for the freedoms that we all enjoy. My hope is, that over this Memorial Day weekend, we pause a moment and remember those men and women.
I have a very special place in my heart for all our Veterans. I am truly grateful for all who have served over the years, and feel badly for those who returned wounded. But this is the day we remember those who paid the ultimate price for our country.
It’s too easy to take our freedoms for granted. I try to never miss an opportunity to personally shake a Veterans’ hand and thank them for their service. I wake up every day in a free country because of the many, many years of service by so many. That’s why, back in the day, on KOOL-FM, I did a special salute every day, and a special broadcast on Veterans Day.
So, even though today we cannot personally show gratitude and appreciation to those who paid the ultimate price, we can remember. That’s what the word, “memorial,” means; a remembrance. Take a moment or two from your day today, and join with me, with gratitude, remembering there have been many who gave their lives for you and me.
God bless all those, and their families, who serve our United States of America.
Our state has it’s share of well known troops that have made the ultimate sacrifice for our liberties and freedoms that we take for granted each day.
WW2’s Ira Hayes….the Sacaton Native American that was part of the legendary Iwo Jima flag raising and Memorial in Washington, D.C……who didn’t lose his life on the battlefield, but died a lonely, broken man because of the fame and hero worship he never wanted.
The USS Arizona, sunk in Pearl Harbor during that horrible day in 1941 and to this day still contains the remains of its crew of 1,177 – all from various hometowns across our country.
And those troops from Arizona who “gave it all” in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – including Army Spc. Lori Ann Piestewa and Army Ranger Cpl. Pat Tillman.
My step – father was on Omaha Beach Zero Hour, my Mom was a WW2 Female Marine, sister Jan an Army nurse, my son Dan just finished his tour of duty in our Navy, and I served my time in the Army in the mid 70’s – so you see, our family has a deep understanding of the sacrifices that are made for one’s family and country. I’m sure you can share the same story about your family.
But let’s never forget the thousands of our fellow Zonas that made the same selfless sacrifice, from WW1 to Desert Storm and beyond – and who’s names are not so familiar to us – but none the less, are mourned and missed by family and friends to this day.
So – please take a break today – between the pool party, the hot dogs, mall shopping, the precious time with your family – and spend a quiet moment in remembrance and respect for those in our state and around the USA – at the very least, we owe them our gratitude and love in their memory.