"The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more."
When John Adams penned the above words to his wife Abigail, it seems he only was off by two days according to our celebrations.
The actual measure itself was passed on July 2, 1776. Some historians would say that the actual document was not signed until August 2, but both Adams and Jefferson both said it was signed on the fourth. Our country has grown into a world power since the days of Adams and Jefferson; it has become the greatest testament to freedom the world has ever known.
Now in our 235th year we certainly as a nation are going through a struggle, but we have had struggles before and we have come out stronger. We have no doubt that we will overcome once again.
We owe much thanks to our forefathers for their vision. And we owe a debt to those who have supported that vision - both civilian and military - with their time, blood and life.
One local family recently gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country - the Pulliams, who lost a newlywed husband/son-in-law Dimitri del Castillo in Afghanistan. There is more on their story in this week's front page and next week's editorial page.
Men and women such as del Castillo and the Pulliams helped create this country and continue to preserve it today. It is our sacred duty to continue on with that same vision. We can thank God for his help on fulfilling that mission.
On our country's 235 birthday may Almighty God continue to bless the United States of America and every person who believes in its principals.