On Wednesday afternoon, I went to Sesser to shoot a funeral procession for a fireman who had been killed the preceding Friday. He had been called out to help extinguish a fire in a semi alongside the interstate. After the fire was out and the firefighters were putting away their gear, a Greyhound bus apparently slammed into one of the firetrucks, which in turn hit and killed the fireman.

Coincidentally, the funeral took place the same day I found out Patti’s mother had died. I didn’t know the fireman, but I most certainly knew Betty Carberry, so I thought of her, some, while I was in Sesser. (Patti and I went to Sesser one time when she came to visit me. We played miniature golf at the Custard Stand — which, unfortunately, no longer has a putt-putt course.)

I was hoping to get a “John-John salute”-type picture during the procession, but I didn’t, really. I did get this one, though …

Waving

… and it reminded me of these lines from a Mary Chapin Carpenter song called “Stones in the Road,” from the CD with the same name (there are 4 or 5 songs on that album that I really love, and this is one of them):

When I was 10, my father held me on his shoulders above the crowd
To see a train draped in mourning p
ass slowly through our town.
His widow kneeled with all their children at the sacred burial ground,
And the TV glowed that long, hot summer with all the cities burning down.

And the stones in the road flew out beneath our bicycle tires
Worlds removed from all those fires as we raced each other home.

Fireman's Gear

American Flag

I love the colors of the flag against the blue and clouds in the sky. I thought about posting another shot that had no clouds and only a hint of the power lines on the right, which I could have Photoshopped out altogether — although that brings up another point that was made today at a presentation on photographing hummingbirds (more on that later): “Photoshop is a noun, not a verb.”

I think, too, that we had the whole Power Lines in Photo Debate one time in The Orchard, and I believe it was prompted by one of Jane’s photos. Which we all agreed we really really liked, but we were divided on the issue of the power lines. Which I decided, in most cases, I actually like seeing because of a statement made by a young man here in town who had returned from Iraq: He was talking about how glad he was to be back in the United States, and how happy he was to see so many familiar sights … even the power lines.

And the stones in the road leave a mark from whence they came
A thousand points of light or shame … baby, I don’t know.

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