The Bugler

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Keep the Spirit of '45 Alive!

Recently, Glendale customer Mr. Auston O'Neill told us about his active participation in the Spirit of '45. This special organization embraces and commemorates the services and sacrifices of WWII veterans living in our local communities. In 2010, Congress unanimously passed a resolution designating the second Sunday in August as National Spirit of '45 Day to honor all of the men and women who were the ordinary heroes of WWII. On Sunday, August 10 local parades and special events will be held nationwide to celebrate the Day! We salute Mr. O'Neill, his wife and everyone involved in their efforts to keep the Spirit of '45 alive. In 2015, they will be commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. Excerpts from Mr. O'Neill's personal story are reprinted below and the entire article can be read on Spiritof45.org.

"Auston and Bonnie O'Neill are on a mission...and they need your help!

"When Auston was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year, the couple bought a secondhand motor home and made plans to travel throughout America to help raise public awareness about Spirit of '45 Day and the events and activities that will be taking place next year to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII.

"'Keep the Spirit of '45 Alive' put up the money to wrap the O'Neill’s motor home with signage and provided them with some initial funding to help them get underway. Photos of Auston's father and parents, and the National WWII Memorial where he performs 'Taps' each year on Memorial Day and Spirit of '45 Day, are featured on the side of the vehicle.

"'My dad was a decorated combat infantryman during WWII,' said Auston. 'When he died, no one played "Taps" at his funeral. I want to take this opportunity to honor his memory, and that of my mother, and to encourage other people of my generation to do the same for their parents.'

"The Spirit of '45 Day Express began its journey on February 7, the same day that the O'Neill's son, Auston, Jr., an Army Reservist, left home for Afghanistan, where his wife is also serving.

"'We want to remind people that we need to give our current generation of men and women in uniform the same warm homecoming and support that was given the Greatest Generation on their return home from WWII,' said Bonnie, who is networking with Blue Star Mothers (which was founded during WWII) and groups like Code of Support that are helping today's veterans make the transition to civilian life.

"The Spirit of '45 Day Express is traveling throughout America to help publicize Spirit of '45 Day and promote interest in commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II next year. The Express has traveled more than 25,000 miles since early February of this year, visiting 40 states. This summer it will visit with several high visibility stops culminating in a Northeastern States tour and an appearance in the New York City Veterans Day Parade on November 11."

Visit the website to see all the places that the unity tour will visit as it makes its way to New York City.

An 'Unbroken' Great American Hero

Louis Zamperini's incredible story of his life as an Olympic distance runner and WWII prisoner of war survivor was told in an incredible bestseller, Unbroken, by Lauren Hillenbrand and was first published in 2010. The book is a great read for all generations and is a great way for younger people to understand one man's story and the sacrifices he and many others made for this country. Louis Zamperini died on July 2, 2014 at the age of 97. A biography on his incredible life and story of courage can be seen at WSJ.com and later this year in a film directed by Angelina Jolie.

Glendale and ParadeStore.com

Glendale outfits honor guards, color guards, and drill units. Visit our site for the best in parade and drill equipment and for uniform accessories at http://www.ParadeStore.com

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