Union Democrat staff

Murphys soldier a gorgeous monument

To the Editor:

Regarding the beautiful and powerful new statue of an American soldier generously gifted by the John Kautz family to the Veterans Memorial Park in Murphys, an inquiry about the proper placement of the American flag on the uniform of the U.S. Armed Forces came up. The flag on the statue's right shoulder flies right to left. That is, the stripes point to the soldier's back, the field forward. This is not in error.

Army regulation 670-1, "Wear and Appearance of Army Uniforms and Insignia," updated most recently Sept. 5, 2003, addresses explicitly the proper and lawful placement of the U.S. flag patch on the Army uniform.

The regulation states that when authorized for application to the proper uniform the American flag patch it to be worn in this manner, the flag is facing the observer's right, and given the effect of the flag flying in the breeze as the wearer moves forward. The appropriate replica for the right shoulder sleeve is identified at the "reverse side flag."

A great "Thank you!" goes out to John, Gail and Stephen Kautz for this gorgeous 10-foot monument.

Dennis Griffin


Grateful for

good Samaritans

To the Editor:

I live in Murphys and last Monday I was running errands in Sonora, motoring down Mono Way below The Junction shopping center when suddenly my car stalled. Fortunately I was in the right lane; two men immediately were at my driver's side window, telling me to put the car in neutral; they immediately pushed my car to the side of the road. They even offered to escort me to a nearby car dealership where I could "wait for help in an air-conditioned building!" I thanked them for their concern; assured them I'd be fine.

I called my insurance company immediately on my cell phone; while waiting for 18 minutes for a tow truck to arrive, there were three different people who stopped by, offering me help. One lady even insisted that I take a new, cold bottle of water. At this point, the traffic was bumper to bumper, everyone has their destination and yet in such a short period of time, these individuals were so concerned about me and my safety, not knowing me, just caring.

I've lived for more than 78 years; Monday was certainly not the first time I've had the pleasure of people being helpful, even in foreign countries when language can be a barrier. I truly believe that we should all be aware of the thoughtful, caring people in this world wherever we go.

Pat Bradley