Friday, November 12, 2010

The Nation's Oldest Veteran's Day Parade- Birmingham, Alabama

1 Lt. Andrew Tsimpides
Alabama's Last Living Horse Soldier
U.S. Cavalry Mounted, 1936

What a day.  I have so many images from Birmingham's Veterans' Day Parade, the oldest in the country.  I struggled with what to share as so many touched my heart.  It think this one says it all.  I will post more in the days to come.

28 comments:

Naturedigital said...

It is really touching Virginia to see the old veteran still on parade.
By the way the Lieutenant's name sounds a little Greek to me..
have a great day.
Costas

TheChieftess said...

this is a fabulous photo Virginia...it most definitely is the epitome of what Veteran's Day is and should be, all about...

And I love the banner too!!!

Dina said...

Yes, this photo does say it all.
Wonderful!
Just imagine--horse soldiers in the 20th century.

P.S. Please see e-mail.

Olivier said...

un beau portrait mais avec un peu de tristesse dans son visage

VP said...

A beautiful portrait, I wonder if he's moved or sad about memories.

brattcat said...

A remarkable portrait, V.

Virginia said...

Costas,
Yes you are correct. I"m sure it's a Greek name!

Maya said...

Both great shots!

Daryl said...

Fabulous banner and awesome portrait, Virg!

MadAboutParis said...

Lovely, intimate shot...what brought the Greeks to BHM???

altadenahiker said...

Great dignity. Oh, yes please -- more.

Dystopos said...

There's a 1981 "Birmingfind" pamphlet that gives a good introduction to the Greek immigrant community in Birmingham: ''The New Patrida: The Story of Birmingham's Greeks''.

Suffice it to say that Greeks have been a big part of the melting pot here, especially when it comes to eating.

steviewren said...

I thought about going to the parade this year since it is the first year in a long time that I haven't been working. But I instead I was at home busy battling a terrible cold...wah, wah, wah. I'm happy to hear everything went well.

Ken Mac said...

that sword is mighty real

FancyHorse said...

Wonderful portrait of an "old soldier"!

MadAboutParis, there have been Greeks in Birmingham a long, long time! Many of them were in the grocery or restaurant business for generations, and Greek-owned restaurants are always the best, no matter what the cuisine - steaks, barbeque, seafood, Italian - all good!

Birdman said...

Wonderful portrait.

Virginia said...

Yes I agree, the Greek population in Birmingham I would think is quite large. They are definitely some of the best cooks with the restaurants in town.
V

Bob Crowe said...

The oldest? When did it begin? I will never fully appreciate this since I did not serve in the military.

SRQ said...

My goodness...how many years young is Mr. Tsimides?! Nice capture of the day. I'll look forward to seeing more of your parade photos.

Petrea said...

The oldest? I'm so impressed, V. More photos of this event, please.

Jilly said...

How interesting that Birmingham has the oldest veterans day parade in America. This is a lovely shot with beautiful blurred background yet the flag is sharp.

Rambling Round said...

What a legacy!

Dystopos said...

I just learned a little more about Lt. Tsimpides. His unit was hit by an artillery shell in the Pacific in 1944 and he was officially listed among the dead. They didn't realize he had survived until they noticed he was breathing when they opened his mouth for his dog-tags prior to burial. His mother collected GI insurance on his "death" even after he was discharged. His name can be found among the casualties on the Alabama Veterans Memorial off I-459.

Also, his son, Michael, is still on active duty and has served in Afghanistan.

Virginia said...

Dystopos,
Thanks so much for that amazing story! You always have the best stuff!
V

Judy - So California said...

Great pic V. Will be anxious to see more. He's NOT a horse we can't see is he?

Dina said...

What?! This man has quite a story!

Nathalie said...

What a story indeed!
I wonder if the mother had to reimburse the GI insurance money.


Wonderful photo too Virginia!

david mcmahon said...

Bravo, Virginia, bravo.