Houston proud

MUG Floyd Ingram LITTLEShortly after I moved to Houston I ran across a slogan that caught my eye:

“Houston Proud!”

It seems it was part of an initiative to spruce up the community in general and the Courthouse Square specifically. And the designation seems to have worked because there are plans to put Houston on the National Register this spring.

There is nothing I like more than watching this town and this community come together to make something big happen.

And that feeling is not unique to me.

We all got a chance to experience that sensation Sunday as we formally welcomed the 288th Sapper Company back home.

 

Job well done

 

Starkville Road in front of Houston High School was lined with American Flags Sunday.

It’s no secret the same bunch that puts those flags out every Memorial Day, Veteran’s Day and Fourth of July posted those flags Sunday morning.

Our Southern culture teaches us respect for the God and country at an early age.

Those flags made me proud.

Sunday’s ceremonies were held in the Houston High School Auditorium. As those Sappers lined up out front, and again as they walked single file onto the stage, it made me proud to be from Houston. I recognized men – young and old – who work in businesses, go to my church and serve as little league coaches here in Houston.

Those who spoke also made me proud as they stepped to the microphone and spoke briefly of what this unit and local families mean to this community.

Highway Commissioner Mike Tagart’s words about the citizen soldier also struck a cord in my heart.

“When you look at our armed forces you don’t see black, white, red, yellow or any ethnic group,” said Tagart. “There are no Republicans or Democrats. There are only Americans.”

But Sunday’s greatest tribute came from the Lt. Colonel over the 288th who has watched this unit and this community during its recent deployment. Col. Mike Cleveland’s quotes can be found in a story on Page One of this newspaper.

His words made me “Houston Proud!”

 

What’s next?

 

So the Sappers are back home and Sunday marked the welcome routine of drill once a month in the Magnolia State.

They unveiled a sign designating U.S. Highway 15 Bypass as Veteran’s Memorial Highway. They also asked all veterans at Sunday’s ceremony to stand and be recognized for their service.

Houston has a history of supporting its servicemen and women and I don’t think that passion will ever fade. Our Sappers suffered more on this deployment than they have let on.

They have now returned home to careers, family and a community that truly is proud of their service.

Thankfully the war in Iraq is over and the war in Afghanistan is winding down. But there is much in this country, this state and this town left to do.

As civilians we need to now look around and find those projects, those causes, those missions that make us Houston Proud!

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