Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Near the Bucky O'Neill statue a stone display with bronze tablets honors names of all those residents of Yavapai County Arizona that served in the U.S. Military during World War II.
On those tablets I found name of Linda's uncle Roy Rogers (now deceased). We read his biography in the Rogers Family History a couple of years ago and gained a greater apprecation for this good man, always so faithful, industrious and full of service towards his fellowmen. He was a member of that generation of Americans who preserved our democracy in those most critical days of war during the 20th century. We must not forget what they did.

After a comfortable night in Flagstaff, we made the final day of our journey home, January 25 (one month to the day, after our departure) down the winding road that takes you through Sedona and the red rock cliffs of Oak Creek Canyon. The town was thronged with tourists on this sunny and mild winter day. We didn't stop but enjoyed the views and the obvious changes (growth!) in the area since our time there some 20+ yrs ago. We drove on down through Cottonwood (also much changed - so many new developments and increased population!) up Mingus mountain through the historic mining town of Jerome, finally stopping for lunch at the town square in Prescott.
While Linda examined wares in one of the nearby gift shops I walked about the old County court house and stopped to take a picture of the bronze statue of Arizona's famous member of the Rough Riders, Bucky O'Neill. He supposedly made that historic ride up San Juan Hill with his leader Teddy Roosevelt during the Spanish-American War.

As we entered northern Arizona, after leaving Kanab, Utah we stopped at Jacob Lake Inn & Restaurant for a bite to eat. The young man serving us at the lunch counter said he was a BYU student from Monticello, Utah, getting ready to serve a mission. We learned he performed in the "King and I" with Terry's brother Reid. We almost always find a connection to someone we know when we ask a few questions during our stops at Jacob Lake and other places on the Arizona/Utah/Idaho trail.
Linda was not surprised when I stopped the car, after leaving Jacob Lake and took this picture, east from the overlook above Marble Canyon and the Vermilion Cliffs. One of my favorite sights in all the world. I am certain that I have featured another picture or two of this great open expanse in previous blogs. It is the land, vertually unchanged, that grandfather Jacob Hamblin traversed so many, many times on horseback as frontiersman, church representative and missionary to the Indian tribes of this region in the late 1800's.

We took our time on the open road, staying at or just below the speed limit ( a new and surprisingly pleasant experience for Terry). We made overnight stays in Utah and again in Flagstaff, Arizona before finally making it home to Mesa by way of Sedona, Cottonwood, Jerome and Prescott, rather than straight down the Interstate. The by-ways are always more inviting.

Saturday, following a fun-filled evening on Friday, January 21, with Jeffery and family at the Barbershop Festival where we saw both Adele and her husband Daniel perform, we bid goodbye to the gang at BYU-Idaho and began to make our way down across the the snow laden vistas of southeastern Idaho toward Utah and eventually our Arizona home. Despite the threat of another major storm we the highways clear and dry. What a blessing for us!