On Dec. 16, I was driving on Genesee Street in the vicinity of the Buffalo airport. I noticed approaching me a fire department vehicle and a police vehicle, both of which had their emergency lights activated. They were followed by motorcycles flying large American flags, then a hearse. It was obvious from the line of oncoming cars with their headlights on that a major funeral procession was in progress.
It didn't take long to realize that this was the procession for a fallen American hero, Pfc. Travis Krege, who gave his life in Iraq defending our freedoms. I pulled to the side of the road carefully, which is required whenever an emergency vehicle is approaching, and was nearly rear-ended by motorists who could not have cared less what was happening. They couldn't take two to three minutes to wait as the procession passed. How appalling.
All of this is in contrast to what happened nearly three years ago when one of my loved ones who gave his life in Iraq was laid to rest in Michigan.
In that case, police from variousjurisdictions blocked off all majorintersections as the procession passed through their towns on the 10-mile route to the cemetery. All motorists who were approaching us stopped on the side of the road, with many exiting their vehicles, hats removed and hands across their hearts. Parents and children came out of their houses and lined the route, waving American flags.
Buffalo has been touted as the city that cares. It sure didn't show that day.
C. DAVID KENNEDY