The Memorial Day Mission

Spider Magazine for Kids|Adventures in Space-Time - May/June 2020

The Memorial Day Mission
“IS THAT THE last one, Poppy?” asked Boomer. His great-grandfather nodded. Every Memorial Day, they placed little flags by the headstones of a dozen pilots. Boomer and Poppy walked out the gates of the cemetery toward home.
Debbie A. Taylor

Boomer smiled. Poppy was coming to school tomorrow to tell all about his years as a real Tuskegee Airman— one of the first African-American pilots in the world. Who wouldn’t want to hear how he escaped the swarms of enemy airplanes that chased him through the skies above Europe over sixty years ago? Boomer never wanted to speak in front of his class, but there wasn’t a shy bone in Poppy’s body.

They climbed the steps to Boomer’s house. Suddenly, Poppy’s foot slipped. Down he went, right off the porch. “Poppy!” yelled Boomer. Mom and Dad burst through the front door. Mom knelt beside Poppy.

“Don’t move! I’m calling the paramedics,” said Dad.

Before Boomer could blink, Poppy was on a stretcher in the ambulance with Mom holding his hand.

“I’ll call from the hospital,” said Mom as the ambulance doors closed.

Boomer picked up the box of small flags and squeezed it against his chest. While they waited, he and Dad rubbed grease off the barbecue grill without talking. An hour later the phone rang, and Dad snatched it up.

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Adventures in Space-Time - May/June 2020