I ran across this article from about ten years back, but think this is very appropriate to share as we face this 2020 presidential election.
This is exactly why I agree with President Donald Trump that we should be teaching American History in our schools.
Remember the guy who wouldn’t take the flag pole down on his Virginia property awhile back?
You might remember the news story several months ago about a crotchety old man in Virginia who defied his local homeowners association and refused to take down the flag pole on his property along with the large American flag he flew on it.
Now we learn who that old man was. On June 15, 1919, Van T. Barfoot was born in Edinburg, Texas. That probably didn’t make news back then.
But twenty five years later, on May 23, 1944, near Cyrano, Italy, that same Van T. Barfoot, who had in 1940 enlisted in the U.S. Army, set out alone to flank German machine gun
positions from which gunfire was raining down on his fellow soldiers.
His advance took him through a minefield but having done so, he proceeded to single-handedly take out three enemy machine gun positions, returning with 17 prisoners of war.
And if that weren’t enough for a day’s work, he later took on and destroyed three German tanks sent to retake the machine gun positions.
That probably didn’t make much news either, given the scope of the war, but it did earn Van T. Barfoot, who retired as a Colonel after also serving In Korea and Vietnam, a well deserved Congressional Medal of Honor.
What did make news was his neighborhood association’s quibble with how the 90-year-old Veteran chose to fly the American flag outside his suburban Virginia home.
Seems the HOA rules said it was OK to fly a flag on a house-mounted bracket, but, for decorum, items such as Barfoot’s 21-foot flagpole were “unsuitable”.
Van Barfoot had been denied a permit for the pole, but erected it anyway and was facing court action unless he agreed to take it down.
Then the HOA story made national TV, and the neighborhood association rethought it’s position and agreed to indulge this aging hero who dwelt among them.
“In the time I have left,” he said to the Associated Press. “I plan to continue to fly the American flag without interference.”
As well he should. And if any of his neighbors had taken a notion to contest him further, they might have done well to read his Medal of Honor citation first. Seems it indicates Mr. Van Barfoot wasn’t particularly good at backing down.
WE ONLY LIVE IN THE LAND OF THE FREE BECAUSE OF THE BRAVE BECAUSE OF BRAVE OLD MEN LIKE VAN BARFOOT!
Van T. Barfoot passed away on March 2, 2012.
Raised in San Antonio, Jack Dennis’ early experiences were as a newspaper reporter and private investigator. With a Texas State University bachelor’s degree, Jack studied journalism, education and psychology. He was the founding vice-president of Sigma Delta Chi, the Association of Professional Journalists at the University. Jack has received numerous awards, including Investigative Reporter of the Year from Rocky Mountain Press Association, David Ashworth Community Award, and Leadership in Management.
Some of the people and groups Jack has interviewed include:
Elvis Presley, Merle Haggard, George Jones, Willie Nelson, B.B. King, George Strait, Roy Orbison, Justin Timberlake, Steven Tyler, Freddie Mercury, Kenny Rogers, Kenny Loggins, Jackson Browne, Steve Wariner, Tanya Tucker, Scotty Moore, Fats Domino, Patty Page, Tommy Roe, Emmy Lou Harris, Johnny Rivers, Charly McClain, Kinky Friedman, John McFee, Guy Allison & Patrick Simmons (Doobie Brothers) , Randy Bachman (BTO), Jim Messina, Todd Rundgren, Alvin Lee, Gary Puckett, The Ventures, Freddy Cannon, Augie Meyer, Christopher Cross, Whiskey Myers, Sha Na Na (John “Bowzer” Baumann), Flash Cadillac, Jerry Scheff, John Wilkinson, Darrell McCall, and more.
Politicians & News
George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Lady Bird Johnson, Greg Abbott, Rudolph Giuliani, Larry King, Jack Anderson, Tom Bradley, Connie Mack, and more.
Clint Eastwood, Mike Myers, Taylor Lautner, Cameron Diaz, Jerry Lewis, Eddie Murphy, Antonio Banderas, Julie Andrews, Selena Gomez, Tippi Hedren, James Earl Jones, James Woods, Jim Nabors, Martha Raye, Rosalind Russell, June Lockhart, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Howie Mandel, Meg Ryan, Cheri Oteri, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, James Drury, Melanie Griffith, Nathan Lane, Alan Thicke, Lou Diamond Phillips, Clint Howard, Tony Sirico, Cesar Romero, Michael Berryman, Tracy Scoggins, William Windom, Warren Stevens and more.
Buzz Aldrin, Alan Bean, Wally Schirra, Dave Scott, Gene Cernan, Walt Cunningham, Scott Carpenter, Gene Kranz (NASA Flight Director), Ed Mitchell, Richard Gordon, Bruce McCandless, Vanentina Treshkova (first woman in space, Russia), Alex Leonov (first man to walk in space, Russian), Al Worden, Dee O’Hara (nurse to astronauts) and more.
Sports: Joe Torre, Roger Staubach, Bob Hayes, Billie Jean King, Manuela Maleeva, Drew Pearson, Bob Lilly, Tim Duncan, David Robinson, George Gervin, Tony Parker, Shannon Miller, Cathy Rigby, Bruce Bowen, Wade Boggs, Fernando Valenzuela, Bernie Kosar, Dale Murphy, Jim Abbott, Dick Bartell, Mike Schmidt, Dan Pastorini and more.
May Pang, Bob Eubanks, Vernon Presley, Vester Presley, Charlie Hodge, Joe Esposito, Rick Stanley (Elvis’ step-brother, Harold Lloyd (Elvis’ first cousin), Doyle Brunson, Kara Peller, Hank Meijer, Norman Brinkler, Stanley Marcus, Jerry King, Mac King, Nathan Burton, Zach Anner, Louie Anderson, Owen Benjamin, Steve Byrne and more.
As head of Facilities for a major retailer (H-E-B Food/Drugs) for 20 years, Jack co-founded Professional Retail Store Maintenance Association (PRSM) and was elected President to establish PRSM magazine. Jack is a writer, speaker, golf-concierge and happiness coach. He has researched and studied happiness for over 40 years.
Jack was a prolific writer for Examiner.com, with over 1,900 articles written in six years. His articles and stories have appeared in AXS Entertainment, The ROWDY Country Music, Memphis Flash, and numerous magazines.
He is author of “Miracles of Justice,” a true courtroom drama novel about social injustice and miracles.