Five Days In June


Brandywine, Philadelphia, Saratoga, Fort Ticondaroga, West Point, Princeton, Crossing of the Delaware, Brooklyn Bridge and Valley Forge! What do all of these historical places have in common? All are historical places of significance that my Dad, my brother and I visited in a whirlwind five-day span from June 9 to June 13 more than ten years ago. My Father has since passed on which makes the memory more sweet.

On June ninth we visited the Brandywine battlefield located in Pennsylvania, then on to Philadelphia where we visited Independence Hall and the museum housing “The Liberty Bell”. From there we visited Valley Forge, home to the Continental Army during the winter of 1777. On the tenth we finished up at Valley Forge, than on to Saratoga, New York, home to one of the most important battles fought in the Revolutionary War. On the eleventh we headed to up state New York to visit Fort Ticondaroga, an important landmark in the history of our country. The fourth day of our trip found us visiting “West Point”, the established home of the oldest, (1802)and most elite military training camp. It was very picturesque and impressive. The fourth day was topped off by hiking over the famed “Brooklyn Bridge” which unites Brooklyn City and Manhattan. The final day we had a chance to visit Princeton, New Jersey, which not only is home to the famed university but also to an important battle of the revolutionary war. We ended the day and the trip by visiting the site of where General George Washington crossed over the Delaware River in the middle of the night to surprise and defeat the British army, which became a turning point in the war.

Spending five days on the road with someone gives you plenty of opportunities to talk, give opinions, learn, and discuss almost every topic of life. In the eternal aspects of such a trip, the places you visit are of a much smaller significance than the company you keep while doing so. In this case, it was a treat to be with my Dad and brother and have time together to talk, eat, laugh, and swap stories. I learned some new things about both my Dad and brother. I also learned some new things about my country and its history. It’s a history rich with sacrifice, courage, valor, honor, and even miracles. Some miracles of which, I became better acquainted with.

The best miracle of all, though, was recognizing the power and bond that exists as family members. Here we were, three men, traveling the countryside enjoying history while making it! I say making history, because trips like these don’t come very often and when they do they forge family bonds that last for a lifetime. My brother and my father have been my traveling companions all my life. We’ve taken similar roads, but our destination is the same.

We are much older and we look it! But our spirits are strong and we are still young at heart. We were three traveling men forged together by the bonds of birth. Bonds that are ordained of God. Bonds that are eternal! And that is the way it is intended to be.  And while we visited historical places that held the imprint of God’s hand upon them, I couldn’t help but notice when I looked at my brother and Father, that the greatest imprint of God’s greatest handiwork  was found in the family bonds we felt together during those five days in June. A bond that is eternal. A family bond that is everlasting! See you on the other side, Dad, where the days never end, and the fun is just beginning!

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