While the trip afforded him no time for sightseeing, he took an opportunity to stop in for a brief visit to Arlington National Cemetery en route to the airport. Arlington was full of high school-aged tourists, likely on Spring Break trips to the capital. Despite the crowds, the cemetery was beautiful and serene, and Erik visited a quiet spot where his Uncle Vincent is interred. Vincent died in WWII at Anzio, and his grave site is an inspiring symbol amid the uniformity of Arlington's rows of white headstones.
A few years ago, we first visited the grave and noticed that a tree trunk was growing around it. We have tracked the tree's progress over the years, but have not been back in quite some time. The tree has almost completely enveloped the stone, rendering Vincent's name illegible (Vincent's official name was Maurice Herron, and that is what appears on the headstone. As you can see in the above photo, only the words "RICE" and "RON" are visible). Erik packed light for the trip and did not have his digital camera. However, he had his laptop and used the photo capture feature on the webcam to snap these shots.