Memorial Day

This handsome soldier is World War II veteran Harold Zatkowsky. At the age of 79, he attended the dedication of the WWII Memorial in Washington, DC. I recorded our adventure on my first serious digital camera, a Nikon D70.

The dedication of the WWII Memorial in Washington, DC, inspired me to invest in my first digital SLR, a Nikon D70. My father, 79 at the time, wanted to attend, so my sister, brother and I made it happen. My sister and her husband took care of my mom here in California, I secured tickets and took my dad to DC, where my brother and his wife housed and shuttled us. Our family works well together.

If I was really motivated, I would reprocess all of these images, as I shot in RAW and nowadays I know a lot more about post-processing.  But I sort of like the innocence/magic of my first foray into serious digital imaging being attached to this wonderful moment in time.

Part of the celebration of the week was a national reunion. Here a representative of the National Archives interviews dad as he shares his scrapbooks.

People used these bulletin boards to find old buddies. Dad and I must have checked these boards a hundred times, but he didn't find anyone from his unit.

Dad was in artillery, and every shell they fired weighed more than he did. They landed two days after D-Day and did the full trek into Berlin. He was 17 when he enlisted. What were you doing when you were 17? I'd tell you what I was doing, but this is a family blog.

WWII veterans were treated like heroes all week. Active soldiers in period garb roamed the National Mall, and never missed an opportunity to thank Dad for his service.

I took hundreds of pictures, but Dad is probably in thousands, because everyone on the mall seemed to want a picture with him. (On the Internet, no one can see me get all choked up).

It was a long week, with a lot of walking every day, and we headed home with a lot on our minds.

If you’d like to see more of the images from this trip, they’re here.

4 Comments

Filed under Camera Gear, Motivation, Post Processing, Professional vs. Amateur, Travel and Vacation

4 responses to “Memorial Day

  1. Diana Kelly

    You have so much to be proud of in him, Dean. And he in you! Congratulations on getting him to this event. It must have meant the world to him.

  2. Very nice tribute. You’re a good man.

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