Wednesday, 23/8/2017 | : : UTC-5
Harker Heights Evening Star
Harker Heights Evening Star

July 4 rings close to home for local Soldier

July 4 rings close to home for local Soldier

By Sara Escobar
Correspondent

The fourth of July tends to be a festive time for all families in the United States. It’s a time for grilling, spending time with loved ones and maybe setting off some fireworks to celebrate our freedoms. It’s a tradition millions of Americans partake in—for well over 200 years’ citizens of the United States have come together at different festivals and fairs to experience this day in unity of one another. With so much time separating the reasons of when this observance began, many of us lose sight of why we celebrate this day in the first place.
July Fourth, also referred to as Independence Day, is a special day in history. It is a part of the fundamental steps that were needed to bridge the gap between the 13 colonies that originally comprised the United States and what lead to them binding together as a nation. Independence Day is a federal holiday commemorating the country’s adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, officially ending our association under the British Empire.
Local citizens in the community, such as Mary Schelin of Harker Heights, says it’s clear that as Americans, we have a lot to be thankful for.
“We have so many privileges and freedoms that a lot of other places just don’t have,” Schelin says, who is a mother of four. “I know that in this country, me and my kids have the most opportunity. We’ve made so many advances in the acceptance of all kinds of people, and that’s what I think is most important,”
Her sons, 14-year-old Micah and 11-year-old Malcolm, say their favorite thing about the fourth of July is the good food and spending time with family. “I think the fireworks are pretty,” says her 4-year-old daughter, Serenity.
Even overseas, pride for this holiday can be felt among our troops. For Specialist Dustin Singer, who is currently serving his second tour in Afghanistan, there’s no question of what the fourth of July is about.
“It’s a reason to celebrate my family, and my home,” Singer says, though he is not in-country this year to celebrate what he says is his favorite holiday. “As much as I love fireworks and grilling, that’s not what this day is about. It’s about being with my loved ones and being thankful for my home and the opportunities it’s afforded me.”
Interestingly enough, the legal separation of the 13 American colonies from the British Empire actually occurred on July 2, 1776 after the Second Continental Congress approved the resolution for independence. It was then that Congress turned to the Declaration of Independence, finally approving the document on July 4—irreversibly creating the holiday that all Americans have come to recognize, respect, and celebrate with pride.

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