Friday, July 31, 2015

Chicago, Illinois

And I Will Raise You Up on Eagles Wings:  To be sung like Josh Groban. . .
     And God will raise you up on eagles wings
     Bear you on the breath of dawn
     Make you to shine like the sun
     And hold you in the palm of His hand.
Right here, in Chicago, the eagle has landed. Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery. [2015]

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

North Wilkesboro, North Carolina

And I Will Raise You Up on Eagles Wings:  Here the eagle (clearly a bald eagle, i,e, a real American) appears in the context of patriotism. Its companions are the American flag and the uniform of the U.S. Army. As a symbol, the eagle seems to transcend not only secular and sacred, but also meek and mighty. Mountlawn Memorial Park. [2014]

Monday, July 27, 2015

Augusta, Georgia

And I Will Raise You Up on Eagles Wings:  "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run and not be weary; and they shall walk and not fait." Isaiah 40:30. Westover Memorial Park. [2015]

Friday, July 24, 2015

Istanbul, Turkey

Veteran Pilots:  There's a story behind this headstone, but here is all you know from the clues left behind: (1) He counted Istanbul as his home. (2) He was only twenty-five years old. (3) He was a proud member of the Turkish Aeronautical Association. (4) This is the intriguing part: His inscription reads "Martyred Pilot." Detective skills needed (and also some Turkish). Topkapi Cemetery. [2014]

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Perry, New York

Veteran Pilots:  "It is the easiest thing in the world to die. The hardest is to live." That's the attitude that makes you a good pilot and a good human being. Or, at least, that's the opinion of the greatest fighter pilot of World War II, Eddie Rickenbacker. "Fly High Rick." Say Hi to Eddie up there. You'll have lots to talk about! Prospect Hill Cemetery. [2013]

Monday, July 20, 2015

Shrewsbury, Pennsylvania

Veteran Pilots:  The AWACS is easy to identify by the rotating radar dome rising from the fuselage. The U.S. Air Force has been flying them since 1977, so he was probably one of the early pilots. What a responsibility and an honor to be in charge of a plane like that! From his headstone, it looks like it defined his life. Christ Lutheran Church Cemetery. [21013]

Friday, July 17, 2015

Alexandria, Kentucky

Helicopter Parents Pilots:  When we use the word helicopter today, it is almost always followed by parents. Let's hope this couple didn't fill that bill. Nor you. Alexandria Cemetery. [2013]

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Lewisberry, Pennsylvania

Helicopter Pilots:  Oh that I had wings like a dove, and for all things airborne a special love, a chopper to pilot, God at the controls, perhaps He is using me to look for lost souls; give me time to good-bye those with whom I've been blessed, for then would I fly away and be at rest. Always take the time to read between the lines. Emmanuel Cemetery. [2012]

Monday, July 13, 2015

Augusta, Georgia

Helicopter Pilots: Helicopters were developed in the 1930s. By the 1960s, they were all over Vietnam, where this vet must have been a pilot. The skyscape on his headstone is one of the iconic images of the Vietnam War. Kiowa? What do you think? Westover Memorial Park. [2015]

Friday, July 10, 2015

Menomonie, Wisconsin

Oh Babe, I Hate to Go:  "Sure you can manage that broom, Potter?" said Draco to Harry. "Sure you can manage that plane, Brehm?" Yes to both questions. Just think: When this pilot was born, the airplane had been around less than twenty five years; yet, as a man, he made it his life's work. Before that time, a lot of dreams must have been wrapped up in broomsticks. St. Joseph Cemetery. [2012]

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wellsville, New York

Don't Know When I'll Be Back Again . . . :  They have reached their cruising altitude and are enjoying a few last glimpses of home. Then, they hear the announcement: "Ladies and gentlemen, we have just been cleared to pass through the pearly gates. The attendant angels will be passing through the cabin one last, very last, time to make a final, very final, compliance check." Woodlawn Cemetery. [2013]

Monday, July 6, 2015

Dover, Delaware

Cause I'm Leavin' on a Jet Plane . . . :  "Family is everything." Or, maybe not. Seems like there might have been a lot of joy in music and the skies, too. Not only is their ascending aircraft breaking the bonds of gravity, it seems to be breaking the bonds of black granite, as well. Do you have a feeling this plane might be on autopilot? Lakeside Cemetery. [2013]

Friday, July 3, 2015

Hendersonville, North Carolina

Heaven Bound on a Bi-Wing:  Two wings improve maneuverability but increase drag. Choose a bi-plane if you want your aerobatics to be noticed from high and low, if you're the persistent sort who has had to overcome drag for an entire lifetime, or if you want to dwell in the house where live the Wright Brothers forever. Oakdale Cemetery. [2012]

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Haines City, Florida

Heaven Bound on a Low-Wing:  Low wings improve the panoramic view of heaven up above but obscure the view of earth down below. Choose a low-wing aircraft if you've had enough of your earthly abode, if you're the celebratory sort who can't wait to get to the party, or if you want to dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Forest Hill Cemetery. [2014]