Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Honoring Our Fallen Veterans on July 4th

Fourth of July is a time to honor and reflect on the memory of our nation's men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.  In this spirit I photographed a still life of my wife Tracey's uncle, F1C Michael Bielko, USN.  Michael's life was lost in WWII when his ship was sunk by a German U-boat.  I included his official Navy portrait, his Purple Heart medal and the gold star service flag that hung in the front window of any home where an immediate family member died in honorable service of our country during WWII.

Please click on image to enlarge.

Michael was killed during Operation Torch on 12 November 1942 when his ship the USS Tasker H. Bliss was torpedoed by the German submarine U-130.  U-130 sneaked into the heavily guarded Fedhala Roads, Morocco and fired five torpedoes at three U.S. transport ships at anchor.  All three transport ships sunk.  Four months later on 12 March 1943, U-130 was sunk by the American destroyer USS Champlin near the Azores.

Michael Bielko is listed on the Tablets of the Missing at the North Africa American Cemetery in Carthage, Tunisia.  He is not forgotten and Fourth of July gave us inspiration to remember him in our prayers once again.

Todd A. Smith is a No. VA, VA, DC, DE, MD, NJ, NY architectural photographer with offices in Alexandria, VA and Spring Lake, NJ. Please visit http://www.tasphoto.com/ to see examples of his architectural photography.

1 comment:

Panama Jack said...

Todd, this is a very kind tribute you have done for a Tracey's uncle. I can tell by the setting and your text, that you paid extra attention to the details in order to pay proper tribute to the high price he paid for our freedom.