Each year, on the Sunday before July 4th, the Savannah Winds, our great, all-volunteer, Armstrong-based, community band, performs a very special patriotic concert. Featuring treasured music, expertly rendered, along with terrific solos sung by Peggy Johnson and Scott Rogers, the concert's finale features an American patriot-icon, always Savannah Winds conductor, Mark Johnson, in costume. Last Sunday, Mark truly-raised the bar, when he appeared on-stage as the Liberty Bell, wearing a life-size, hardened-replica, done with painstaking detail, worthy of a permanent exhibit-piece, handcrafted, entirely, by great music-maker, Mark Johnson himself. We salute Mark, Mario, the Savannah Winds' instrumental and vocal musicians, for yet another sensational patriotic experience.
As follows that stirring, concert each year, today, and for the remainder of this week, those truly proud and thankful to be Americans, celebrate the date we first declared our intention to forge freedom and independence from England. Now, it's one thing to announce that desire. It's another thing, entirely, to make it happen. That task, of course, fell to our then-fledgling military, just a few state militias, forming America's Colonial Army, joined soon after, by our Marines and Navy. Then, later, the Coast Guard and Air Force rounded-out America's defensive fighting-force. To this day, the most powerful, yet most compassionate, in history. Hot dogs and sparklers placed aside, don't ever allow yourself to forget why we are a free nation, and how that liberty has been so painfully-preserved. As true patriots, who "get it," and dearly-love America, never take-for-granted our precious freedom. Forever remember, our nation's brave military members, who, with steadfast-strength, have served and sacrificed, to keep us so.