By David Codrea
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- It’s been an exhausting weekend. Early Friday, my wife and I made the long trek from our home in Hudson, Ohio to Penn Yan, New York for the funeral of her aunt. We then left immediately after the church service for the longer drive to Alabama, to attend the Saturday afternoon service for Mike Vanderboegh.
The memorial was held at the Kilgroe Funeral Home in Leeds and was fairly well attended. In addition to family, there were probably over 50 mourners in all. Considering how far the town is from most of Mike’s readers, it says something that attendance by supporters exceeded that of many of Bloomberg’s professionally-financed bus tour stops. And we all did it on our own dime.
One who traveled even farther than I did was Bob Wright of the New Mexico Militia. A longtime friend and colleague of Vanderboegh, Wright had been asked to share his thoughts on Mike’s life and contributions to liberty. He delivered a passionate and moving tribute to our friend, and attested how you can learn a lot about a man by sharing a campfire and a common cause with him.
I was also asked to speak and shared my thoughts on Mike. Much of that testimonial centered on my reflections on his passing. I began by noting how far from the mark agenda-driven AP “reporting” was from the man whose memory we had gathered to honor (that “story” relied wholly on Southern Poverty Law Center sourcing, and was so uncaring of facts they even got Mike's age wrong in the headline). I ended asking all to rise and applaud our friend, that is, to give him a standing ovation for a life well done.
Both before and after the services, I had a chance to meet with many of those who came to pay their respects. Some introduced themselves by sharing the handles under which they comment and/or blog, and it was great to put a face to a screen name. Afterward, some of the attendees joined the family at an Irish pub in Birmingham, to raise a glass to Mike’s memory and to break bread with fellow freedom advocates.
What was clear was the profound appreciation, respect and love these strong people shared for someone we all recognized as a leader based on the rightness of his ideas and the example set by convictions he lived up to. A universal sentiment that came through loud and clear was that all went away renewed in our commitment to the principles Mike espoused. We also explored ways we who owe Mike a debt for value received from his work can help his family. His wife's situation is not made any easier by the very real financial hardships his calling — speaking hard truths — made pretty much inevitable.
Friends and supporters of Mike Vanderboegh are invited to visit his commemorative page, to read his obituary, to see the slide show that played throughout the service, and to sign the guest book to share your own memory of how Mike and his work influenced your life.
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.
In addition to being a field editor/columnist at GUNS Magazine and associate editor for Oath Keepers, he blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.