Photography by John Michael

"Preserving the memories so others will remember"™

The Last 2012 Washington DC Cherry Blossoms

Finding a parking pl;ace on the Saturday that they are holding the Cherry Blossom parade in Washington DC is a challenge.  Finally I found one on a street near the Potomac River.  From there Washington DC Cherry BlossomsI had trekked down to the Jefferson Memorial to catch the action of the All-Service Drill Team Competition, something that is a true sight to see — rifles with bayonets fixed the spinning and twirling of the nearly 11 pound weapons by these talented members of the military – the Drill teams of the services:  US Army, US Marine Corps, US Navy, US Air Force, US Coast Guard and the US Merchant Marine.

I had gotten there just as the US Marine Corps began their routine and continued to photograph until they announced the winner for 2012. With the memory card full of hundreds of photos, I walked back around the tidal basin and along the Potomac River – all lined with the cherry trees which normally at this time would still be in bloom, yet a very warm March forced them all to jump out early and now the trees were full of leaves … all except one.

As I approached where my vehicle was parked, there still loaded with blossoms was a cherry tree. An though my extensive inventory of photos from days past includes many cherry blossom photos, it was serendipitous, there was  space for one photo remaining on the memory card in the camera. So here up close and personal is “The Last Washington DC Cherry Blossoms of 2012″ 

For those who missed the spectacular display of color when the  other trees were in bloom, sorry, you’ll have to wait until 2013.


Did you see the 2012 cherry blossoms in full bloom?


Posted 5 years, 10 months ago at 12:56 pm.

1 comment

Remembering our military

Saluting Soldier

 In a few days, we’ll honor our military on Veterans’s Day –

the 11th Month, the 11th Day at the 11th Hour…

 The sacrifices that they and their families have and continue to make to defend the freedoms and foundation of the United States of America.


 I am fortunate to have a fantastic group of friends and they are always giving me ideas or sending me great insights and items.  This is a special one from Larry who served in the US Marine Corps and I’d like to share it with you.    And please share it with your family and friends as a rememberance of what you have to be thankful.



Thank you for your service Larrry!

Continue Reading…

Posted 7 years, 3 months ago at 11:56 am.


Remembering the Brave

I have a dear friend who I met when traveling for Corporate America.   He is a Marine who served in many places including South America…  He sent me this and I thought it very appropriate to share …  will you? Continue Reading…


Posted 7 years, 4 months ago at 5:30 am.


PART ONE: TOG on a Mission – 2010

Here’s a more in-depth look at the making and background of the calendar – “The Old Guard on Mission – 2010” – some history and little known facts…

Continue Reading…


Posted 8 years, 1 month ago at 5:50 am.

Add a comment

D DAY – 6 JUN 1944 = A remembrance…

“Time will not dim the glory of their deeds.”

– General of the Armies, John J. Pershing

Below in the photo are only 9,387 reasons why Freedom is not Free… Here in France, the Normandy Cemetery just near the shore where the D-Day landings occurred…

Photos Courtesy American Battle Monuments Commission

“Count your blessings

that they were willing to give, so you can be.”

– John Michael


Posted 8 years, 8 months ago at 3:11 am.

Add a comment

Nearly 60 Years ago – Armed Forces Day

In August of 1949, it was Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson who proclaimed 3rd Saturday in May – A day to honor those who are serving in the US Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard & Marines!

It was 20 MAY 1950, when President Harry S. Truman declared the first Armed Forces Day to thank those who serve to protect the freedoms of our United States of America.

Some 44 million Americans have served in the Armed Forces of the United States according to the Veterans’ Administration. It’s because of them and the ones who now serve that I can sit here and write these words without any cause of concern.

Thank someone in the military today…


Posted 8 years, 9 months ago at 9:20 am.

1 comment

Before there was a MARINE ONE…

There was …


The US Army transported the President of the United States from/to the White House when he needed to go to either Andrews AFB, Camp David or maybe even the Pentagon. This is evidenced in photographs taken in August of 1962 shown below:

President John F. Kennedy, his wife Jacqueline and son John Jr.

preparing to board helicopter ARMY ONE for a vacation.

And it was the US Army that provided the foundation of military aviation in the United States… there was a commemoration of the 100 years of military aviation held at Ft Myer VA in SEP 2008 marking the Wright Flyer’s first flights on Summerall Field.


Posted 9 years ago at 3:18 am.


I couldn’t sleep …

Last night was a bit of a challenge, and I continued to wake and finally out of something to distract the active mind, I turned on the laptop and resumed my synopsis of Tuesday… I didn’t finish yet. I must admit I checked email and found that my network of friends & fans continued to grow.

I also saw that a soldier on their 3d deployment was on – it was morning there. but no reason for me to be on. I reached out and we had a nice chat. Nice, but rather disturbing. I learned from him that he had to reach into his own funds and buy ‘necessities’ for his soldiers. I was shocked and dismayed that we send our soldiers into harm’s way and we can’t provide “basic coverage” to do their jobs.

I alerted him to a website that I’ve used repeatedly to surprise the troops with “STUFF” that I have assembled (paperback books, treats, batteries, even my notecards with plenty of pens). I urged him to sign up and see what ‘donations’ he could attract.

I know that it’s tight for a lot of us these days (me included) but if you can, go out to the website and pick a soldier and find out what they want/need and if you can send it off. You’ll feel better. I know I do when I head to the post office with that package.

They’re fighting for you… won’t you help them?


Posted 9 years, 1 month ago at 12:47 pm.

Add a comment

11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month…

To all of those who have served and continue to serve to protect the freedoms of democracy in the United States and the world….



Posted 9 years, 3 months ago at 12:00 pm.

Add a comment

Happy 233rd Birthday US MARINE CORPS!

A very good friend sent this to me… I’d like to pass it along …  It’s about the US Marine Corps…“Today is my 233rd birthday!!

Why are U.S. Marines considered the world’s premier warriors? What puts the Marine Corps above the rest? Other military services have rigorous training and weapons of equal or greater lethality. So, why do U.S. Marines stand head and shoulders above the crowd?
The truth lies in the individual Marine. He (or she) did not join the Marines. Roughly 40,000 try each year. Those who survive the crucible of Marine basic training have been sculpted in mind and body. They have become Marines.
Once he has earned the title and entered the Brotherhood of Marines, a new warrior must draw upon the legacy of his Corps. Therein lies his strength. In return, the strength of the Corps lies in the individual Marine. The character (often defined as “what you are in the dark”) of these warriors is defined by the three constant Corps Values: honor, courage, and commitment.

Honor: Honor requires each Marine to exemplify the ultimate standard in ethical and moral conduct. Honor is many things; honor requires many things. A U.S. Marine must never lie, never cheat, never steal, but that is not enough. Much more is required. Each Marine must cling to an uncompromising code of personal integrity, accountable for his actions and holding others accountable for theirs. And, above all, honor mandates that a Marine never sully the reputation of his Corps.

Courage: Simply stated, courage is honor in action — and more. Courage is moral strength, the will to heed the inner voice of conscience, the will to do what is right regardless of the conduct of others. It is mental discipline, an adherence to a higher standard. Courage means willingness to take a stand for what is right in spite of adverse consequences. This courage, throughout the history of the Corps, has sustained Marines during the chaos, perils, and hardships of combat. And each day, it enables each Marine to look in the mirror — and smile.

Commitment: Total dedication to Corps and Country. Gung-ho Marine teamwork. All for one, one for all. By whatever name or cliche, commitment is a combination of (1) selfless determination and (2) a relentless dedication to excellence. Marines never give up, never give in, never willingly accept second best. Excellence is always the goal. And, when their active duty days are over, Marines remain reserve Marines, retired Marines, or Marine veterans. There is no such thing as an ex-Marine or former-Marine. Once a Marine, always a Marine. Commitment never dies.

The three Corps Values: honor, courage, commitment. They make up the bedrock of the character of each individual Marine. They are the foundation of his Corps. These three values, handed down from generation to generation, have made U.S. Marines the Warrior Elite.
The U.S. Marine Corps: the most respected and revered fighting force on earth.

Semper Fidelis


Posted 9 years, 3 months ago at 12:24 am.

Add a comment