May is all about names and recognition.
Moffat County High School’s annual Awards Night and National Honor Society Installation Ceremony is filled with a variety of guests who laud students for their toil, dedication and learning by presenting certificates and scholarships.
Graduation is another celebration of names and accomplishments where students are applauded for their four-year commitment and are rewarded at various levels for many different accomplishments.
Some for making it through but others for going above and beyond.
Memorial Day begins with a flurry of activity, but at 11 a.m. at Craig Cemetery, the names of those who have died in service to our country are read from a list as we look on and listen to the many names whose faces we may never know but whose dedication has allowed us to live freely.
Each ceremony reminds me of one word: Honor.
I’ve lived in Craig a long time and have missed a few graduations and some Awards Night ceremonies but I always try to make sure the entire family makes it to the Memorial Day service.
The reading of the names, the 21-gun salute, the prayer and the ceremony for the fallen soldiers stand in stark contrast to the celebration of the student’s living accomplishments.
An amazing display of recognition takes place when we honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice here in Craig and similar ceremonies take place in small towns and big communities all over the country.
We are a land that values what generations before us have accomplished and we celebrate what is our future hope in the students who graduate each spring.
What happens in between is a whole bunch of hard work and hoping that the American Dream isn’t just something we wish for but is a real product of a life lived decently and morally.
So today, I want to honor some of the local people who help me makes sense of this country that I now call home:
A spiritual small-group who believe in me and each other no matter the life circumstances.
The Journey of Christ-followers who worship freely, openly and teach me to serve.
The 121 graduating seniors who help remind me that hard work and dedication do pay off in big lessons about the reality of life and how we should live.
A men’s group for speaking wisdom into my life about the intersection of faith, life and politics.
A football coaching staff for showing me big dreams are possible if you make big plans and are selfless in their execution.
A community of school teachers who tirelessly, and without much appreciation, work to make sure our citizenry is educated.
A community of caring, decent citizens who make up the City of Craig whose community was deemed important enough for presidential candidate Mitt Romney to visit and speak to us about what the American Dream might look like if he is elected.
Craig isn’t just a community, it’s my home and it’s an honor to live here.
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