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The annual holiday decor in New York always reminds me of two visits. In December 1943 on my way home to Philly from World War 2 Navy boot camp in Rhode Island, I had an hour’s wait to change trains. I wandered up to the Center to admire the tree.

Recalled in 1951 to active duty during the Korean War, I was again in New York in December for a Navy training program. I had several days to admire the holiday tree and nearby entertainment and sports events before shipping out.

Long retired, I now live 3,000 miles away, and won’t have a chance to visit this year’s tree. It’s a 72-foot, 12-ton Norway spruce, covered with 50,000 LED lights, and topped with an enormous star made from millions of Swarovski crystals. If holiday travels take you to Manhattan, be sure to visit the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, and say hello on behalf of this ancient admirer.

 
 
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