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Red-tailed hawk attends memorial service

By Gary Bogue
Monday, May 12th, 2008 at 6:33 am in Mother Nature, Nature, Raptors, Red-tailed hawk.

On Friday, May 2, Frank Vizena was buried at the new Veterans National Cemetery near Dixon, CA, exit 60 off Interstate 80.

The beautiful and inspiring ceremony was held under the committal shelter, but several people stood out from under it. As taps was being played, some saw a large bird (a red-tailed hawk, perhaps) fly over us. Then at the very end of the ceremony, the bird (same one?) flew up and over the shelter, cried out, and circled a few times before flying off.

Frank was in the Army 82nd Airborne, parachute division. Their symbol/motto was (is) “The Screaming Eagles.”

The event was witnessed by several people and you can make anything you want of this, but I have my own thoughts about it.

We all thought it was a beautiful symbolic phenomenon; a fitting end to Frank’s services.
— Ella Vizena, Danville, CA

Mother Nature is a bit of a poet, don’t you think? /Gary

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  1. Karen Enstrom Says:

    I drive by this cemetary regularly and happen to also be a birder and a naturalist. The bird that you all saw was most likely a Swainson’s Hawk, a State-listed Threatened species. They have a nest in an Osage orange tree along Midway. How fitting that a Threatened species would pay homage to a soldier.

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