Driving to work today I passed the Portsmouth, RI, fire station as I always do on workdays. Today was different though.
From the base of the hill on East Main Rd, well before the station itself came into sight, the ladder truck's basket soared into view, extending out over the wooded, four-lane road.
An American flag, stirring in the gentle breeze, hung straight down above the cars that slowed almost as if in a funeral cortège as they passed below.
In front of the truck, visible only as you reached the station itself, was a single wreath of flowers, a fireman's jacket and helmet, and a pair of empty boots.
No one honked.
No one sped up to pass the other cars.