Hear first-hand stories from veterans, songs from the era – Hopkinsville Library Saturday, May 23rd

Join me and other veterans, as we share stories, and celebrate Memorial Day with songs.

Memorial Day Event Hopkinsville Library 052315

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68th anniversay of DDay

Commemorate the 68th anniversay of DDay with us on Saturday, June 2, 2pm at Parnassus Book Store, 3900 Hillsboro Pike, Nashville, TN. We’ll be siging copies of BLOOD RIVER TO BERLIN, A COMBAT MEDIC’S JOURNAL OF WORLD WAR II. In addition there will be copies of TIME AND THE RIVER, a memoir of growing up in West Tennessee during the depression and To Teach to Love, dedicated to our son Stephen Allen Freeland with some of Steve’s poetry and essays as well as other essays by other students including Dr. Gene Gulish of Paris, Tennessee, our son Doug, Chris Evans of Marion, Kentucky and others. Stop by and share some time with us. 2pm, Saturday June 2 at Parnassus Book Store, 3900 Hillsboro Pike, Nashville, TN

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Independence Day

Independence Day has become better known as the “Fourth of July”. No longer do we remember the purpose John Adams had in mind in 1776 when he talked about a day set aside to honor our country and our freedom with parades, fireworks, games and all the rest. We seem to have forgotten that purpose but concentrate instead on the games, fireworks and barbecue.
Today all across this great nation, these United States, in communities large and small, citizens will gather for parades, fireworks and celebration. Yet there must be time for reflection about who we are, who we’ve become and where we’re going. Some thought, some debate must be directed toward the price of freedom. This day should also be a time of reflection and mediation. Too often our freedom is taken for granted, as free as the air we breathe.
Freedom is not free.
Your freedom and mine is a personal thing, paid for with the blood of the young left on too many lost and forgotten battlefields. Unfortunately only the young men and women go to war and die. War eats the young. If the old men who sit in high places and plan wars fought the wars, there would be no more war.
Today in various countries on lost and lonely battlefields, our young men and women are standing up for America. Today some may die.
Only because these few risk their lives it is that we are free.
We are free to speak.
Free to write.
We’re free to do the work that we choose.
We are free to worship or not to worship.
We’re free to assemble.
Possibly you’ve noticed that many of our freedoms are slipping away. Like the early morning mist before the rising sun freedom can disappear before our very eyes.
I’ve been to war, I’ve tasted my own fear, and I’ve revisited battlefields and cemeteries. I’ve followed the trail of too many white crosses and I know that freedom is like a fragile plant and like any living thing, it needs to be nourished to stay alive and I know unless we are careful, it can be forever lost.

Let me leave you with this thought for possible discussion and debate. I have long held the firm conviction that if American must go to war, let everyone go to war. Today our various wars are being fought by less than one percent of the population.

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TIME AND THE RIVER is a companion memoir for BLOOD RIVER TO BERLIN. My book stretches from the Saddlebags to Satellites, from the early roaring twenties through the hard times of the great depression when hungry and aimless men, boys and often women took to the railroads and the hobo camps looking for jobs and adventure. This story also speaks for the young men of the 1940’s who were caught up in the draft and sent of to war with only a few weeks or a few months of training and were expected to line up against an enemy already hardened by years of military taining and war. They proved Hitler wrong. The Americans and British boys did not have “soft bellies.” TIME AND THE RIVER is more than a war story and survival. It talks of the birth of radio and of a country coming of age. It is a snapshot of rural and small town America in an innocent age, a time when many felt that war was romantic and then learned that it never is.
For more information on book signings in your area or to purchase copies of TIME AND THE RIVER or BLOOD RIVER TO BERLIN, please visit: http://www.bloodrivertoberlin.com. You can reach Mike at freelandco@hotmail.com

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