Polly Haight Frawley, Cumberland
The Stars and Stripes Forever by John Phillip Sousa
I grew up the youngest of 4 children in Mt. Lebanon, PA. Mt. Lebo High School had a terrific football team and my two older brothers played in the equally fantastic marching band. As a family we went to the games every Friday night. The conductor of the band, Mr. Prezman, loved his worked and pushed the students to try their hardest, often not necessarily appreciating the antics of teenage boys. As a young child I would hear constantly stories about Mr. Prezman as I fell asleep on my bunk bed on the porch the 4 of us shared in during the summer.
During the winter the band put on a concert at the high school and every year the finale was The Stars and Stripes Forever by John Phillip Sousa. My family never missed it. My father was a veteran of WWII, his brother has been killed in the war and our family flew a flag outside our home for as long as I can remember. To me the song means patriotism, trying your best and families sticking together. The march brings tears to my eyes every time I hear it. While my parents have passed, each of the four children fly the American flag at their homes.