My grandfather passed away last year from a long fight with his health. He suffered a stoke when I was very young, around 2 years old so I never had the privileged to meet him before he was impaired. He suffered from a large loss of motor and verbal function, although could move around on his own, just slowly, and over time learned to say a few key words. It was very much a big game of charades. Some if the first words were "Milly" "S***!" and "SR-71".
If you are unfamiliar with the SR-71 or "Blackbird" it was a Stealth Reconnaissance (SR) plane. It was in operation from 1966-1998 and still hold the air speed record, which is still classified as "Mach 3+". (I could tell you how fast it really went but I'd have to kill you).
My grandfather was a navigator in the SR-71 program, and flew the first operational SR-71 sortie.
Today we found out that the actual plane my grandfather flew on that first mission is on display at a museum. Our whole family misses him dearly and to know that his plane is out there for all to see helps us know that he lives on. His plane was the the biggest thing in his life, second only to his family.
This goes out to my grandfather, and to all service men and women fighting every day so we can sleep in peace at night.