As one issue of U.S. 1 goes to press we often make a mental note to follow up later with a person mentioned in the issue. That was the case with our May 24 Memorial Day weekend issue, when Richard Pinter, the retired first sergeant from the Pennsylvania National Guard who makes it his personal mission to go from cemetery to cemetery on Memorial Day weekend to play taps over veterans’ graves, came by the office to deliver a photograph.
Next year, we said, we should get in touch with Pinter well before Memorial Day, to tell his story and to print the various verses that accompany the mournful tune.
This week, much to our surprise, Pinter was in the news again. When he was out on bugler duty on Sunday, a lamp short-circuited and started a fire at his Bordentown house, destroying the sun room and an adjacent wall. Before the fire trucks could arrive, a neighbor used a fire extinguisher and a garden hose to put out the flames.
Summoned by his wife, Pinter returned to survey the damage but kept on with his bugling schedule on Monday, reaching a total of 21 renditions of Taps for the Memorial Day weekend. Next year, we remind ourselves again, we need to catch up with Richard Pinter.