Today I had the honor of carrying the Marine Corps Colors in the Pentwater Memorial Day Parade. There were over thirty veterans marching in the parade, from WWII veterans, to Iraq vets like myself, and several Korean War and Vietnam vets as well.

Tim White - Memorial Day Photos

Memorial Day Parade 2010 - Pentwater, MI

The turnout was phenomenal, and it warmed my heart to see so many come out to remember our fallen. We marched through town, carrying the colors of our respective services, with Old Glory leading the way. A drummer kept time, and we marched in step to the accompaniment of cheering and whistling onlookers.

We made our way to the marina, where a few words were spoken, a moment of silence was observed, and a wreath was laid in Pentwater Lake. The rifle squad from the Pentwater VFW fired a 21 gun salute, and we made our way to the Pentwater Village Green.

At the Village Green, veterans from the crowd were asked to join those in ranks already assembled. About 15-20 men and women from several generations came out to join us as the national anthem was played. The Pentwater marching band played a rousing military melody, and my spine stiffened with pride at the notes of the Marine Hymn. A veteran gave a speech, another moment of silence was observed, and as we departed, you could hear “Thank You” and “God Bless You” being said from every direction.

Finally, we headed out to the Pentwater cemetery, where Taps was played. After all these years, those magical notes still get me a bit misty-eyed, and today was no exception. A local clergyman led us in prayer, and we laid a wreath at the war memorial in the cemetery.

Memorial Day has always had special significance to me. I began playing Taps at funerals when I was about 10 years old. My Grandfather, a Korean War Era Marine, was the chaplain for his VFW post. He used to take me along to funerals and have me play. Later in life, as a Marine, it became even more significant, as I learned the stories of the heroes who gave all to defend freedom.

But it was in 2006 that Memorial Day really became personal. I lost several good friends in the fall of 2006 and early 2007. They were fellow Marines, Brothers, who are greatly missed. Men like Troy Nealy, Minhee Kim, Luis Castillo, and several others. While each of their lost lives hurt, one was particularly personal for me.

On Feb 19, 2007, Brett Witteveen died in Iraq, on patrol in Fallujah, with Alpha Co. 1/24 Marines. Brett was a great friend, and like a little brother to me. I remember when Brett used to come by my house, put on my pack, and talk about joining the Marines someday. I was so proud of him when he eventually did.  He was just 20 years old when he passed. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about him, and miss him terribly.

Memorial to Brett Witteveen in Grand Rapids, MI

I hope everyone took at least a few minutes today to pause and reflect on the sacrifices made by so many veterans. Without those that have come and gone before us, we wouldn’t enjoy the freedoms we have today. In closing, I wish to pay tribute to my grandfather, SGT Robert P. White, USMC. I miss you, Pop.

Over the last couple of months, the wind turbine tower project proposed for the waters of Lake Michigan off of Oceana and Mason Counties has generated a lot of debate and discourse. As Realtors, we have a vested interested to stay informed of this project, and the ramifications, good or bad, that it could have to our communities.

I recommend that all local community members familiarize themselves with the proposed projects, and do some research to understand the economic and environmental repercussions, good or bad,  that such a project could potentially have on West Michigan.

The wind turbine project is being proposed by Scandia Winds, LLC of Chanhassen, MN and its Norwegian partner, Havgul Clean Energy. Scandia Wind has dubbed the project “The Aegir Project”. They have developed an informative website for the project. To read more, visit http://www.scandiawind.com/Aegirproject.html

Suggested view of what a Wind Farm could look like.

Similiar projects are proposed in various parts of the country. To read about these projects, and see photos of other proposed projects, visit the ecopolitology blog at http://ecopolitology.org. The photo above is courtesy of ecopolitology.org.

The Industrial Wind Action Group has a site that demonstrates some of the local community members’ concern about the Aegir Project. You can view the page at http://www.windaction.org/news/25129

An article on MLive.com has generated many comments, both for and against the project. To read the article and comments go to http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2009/12/wind-farm_developers_face_hurd.html.

Legislation has been introduced to the Michigan State House of Representatives to issue a moratorium on permitting or leasing for offshore wind energy development. Rep. Geoff Hansen (R-Hart) introduced House Bill 5671 to legally prohibit development of a project until the state has had a chance to institute oversight measures. You can review this bill at http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(mptgzfaeef3jy1uojajhws55))/mileg.aspx?page=GetObject&objectname=2010-HB-5761

It is my intent to provide you with the tools to form your own educated opinion on this matter. If you would like to voice your opinion to your local representatives in Government, here are some links to some local Government Officials:

Rep. Geoff Hansen (R-Hart) http://www.gophouse.com/welcome.asp?District=100

State Rep. Dan Scripps (D-Leland) http://101.housedems.com/

State Senator Gerald Van Woerkom (R-Muskegon) http://www.senate.michigan.gov/gop/senators/vanwoerkom.asp?District=34

Governor Jennifer Granholm (D-Mich) http://www.michigan.gov/gov

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich)  http://stabenow.senate.gov/

U.S Senator Carl Levin (D-Mich) http://levin.senate.gov/

U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich) http://hoekstra.house.gov/

For tips on how to effectively communicate with your government representatives, visit http://www.congress.org/communicate

Welcome to Harborview Condos in beautiful downtown Pentwater, Michigan.

Harborview Condos in downtown Pentwater, MI

Harborview Condos in downtown Pentwater, MI

Relax, and make yourself at home in one of our luxurious condominiums overlooking scenic Pentwater Lake. Watch sailboats drift by on their way to the nearby channel as they head out to Lake Michigan. Do some crowd watching as the thousands of tourists walk the streets of downtown Pentwater. Grab your towel and head down to Charles Mears State Park for a swim in Lake Michigan. Or take an afternoon charter fishing trip at the marina and try your luck on “the big lake.”

There’s always something to do in Pentwater.

Whether you’re a regular visitor to Pentwater, or this is your first time, you owe it to yourself to stop in and check out Harborview Condos. Starting at just $299,000, you can’t afford to miss this opportunity to make Pentwater your summer destination.

Our website, http://www.pentwatercondos.com will be up soon. There you’ll be able to find out more about the condos,  Pentwater, and how you can own a piece of West Michigan Paradise. In the meantime,  call or email me to schedule a showing today!