Out And About / By Frank Taniyo
There he is, he’s always there, I thought. If you have driven down Harbor City Boulevard (Route 1) in Melbourne, you may have seen a man holding an American flag. I have seen him almost every time I drive by.
I had admired the mural painted on the Reynolds Air and Heat building where he sits. One day as I passed by, I checked to see if the man was sitting in his usual spot. I knew that I had to meet him. I felt so used to seeing him, it was like seeing a neighbor; you have to say, “Hi.” It just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t.
I got out of my car and approached him. I introduced myself; he told me his name was George.
“I’ve seen you out here almost every day,” I said.
He replied with a smile, “Just about. I’m a Marine.”
Just then a driver went past, beeping his horn.
“Semper Fi! ” George responded. Semper fi·de·lis is Latin for Always faithful.
Loyalty and steadfastness are some things a Marine never forgets. With cars driving by so fast and blasting their horns, George yelled out, “Semper Fi!”
Without missing one of them, George thanked me for stopping by. As I started to leave, I said, “Once a Marine….”
“Always a Marine!” he called out.
A woman walked over to George with a cup of coffee. “He’s a good man,” she said.
“Yes, he is,” I said.
Thanks for your dedication, Marine. Semper Fi!
Frank Taniyo has been a photographer for 20 plus years. Among my work are nature photography, street art, food images, and still work for documentaries.
Follow Frank Taniyo Photography at: https://www.facebook.com/franktaniyophotography