Thursday, November 13, 2008

Welcome Home (Small Town Style)

My wife Catherine & I were walking over to church Sunday evening at about 6:00 p.m. when I heard the sirens – a lot of them – wailing in the distance and coming our way fast. What was it this time? A fire? A car wreck? So sad; these things happen all to often in our little corner of the world.

Then I saw the flashing lights turn the corner and head down the street towards us, making the biggest racket you ever heard. The dusk was shattered by a convoy of strobing flashes of blue, white, & red light stretching back several blocks down the street. A multitude of differing sirens loudly competed with each other for attention; horns were blaring to clear the way.

The Fire Chief’s bright red pickup truck led the procession, followed by an assortment of six fire trucks from across the county, a police cruiser, EMS, and a half-dozen unmarked cars, all lit up like Christmas trees and making enough noise to wake the dead.

“What’s going on?” Catherine asked. “What is that?”

I smiled. “It’s an escort,” I said. “Somebody just came home.”

And indeed someone had. Cade Shackelford, a 2006 graduate of Casey County High School and current member of the National Guard’s 617th Military Police Unit was home after serving a tour of duty in Iraq.

Welcome Home, Cade. Small town style.

3 comments:

MamaHen said...

That is wonderful!!!!!

Kimber said...

I wish they did that here! I do know the families go to a nearby town to receive the National Guard members who are returning home, but the general public never knows ahead of time that they are expected.

The main road that runs out of town was renamed to honor a recently fallen serviceman. It is "honorary" in that his name is displayed on new street signs all along the length of the road, but it will not officially be called by his name. So far our town has only had to do this for one young man. I pray it won't have to be repeated.

I'd much rather see the welcome home you describe. Thank you for sharing your town's good news!

Anonymous said...

This brought tears to my eyes. What a wonderful welcome home! And God bless Cade Shackelford as well!