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A Veteran’s Day Poem

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There were those who sacrificed everything for the freedom of this land

They fought, resisted, declined what fate gave

They persisted, had faith, they lifted the blanket of despair

They made their own choice; to live, -FREEDOM-

If that’s not possible; to die, paying the price for freedom

They were willingly risking their lives, gambling to be free

They were trying to make the impossible reality; to be free

There were among them, the young, quickly turning into men

There were the women, frail, but just as much as a man

There was rejuvenation of the old, worn, tired men

Together they became one, the best of fighting men


They’ve invited the world to watch, to see, to hear

Freedom for us, Freedom for all is near

Those of you with a mighty fist

Show up now, at least in spirit, be in our midst

Come help us and we will share, let you reap

The benefits of freedom that our blood has sown

Come help, show solidarity and make this revolt your very own

If freedom is to be and it is to be

It will have to be for both you and me

I am ready to give back to God the most precious gift he has given to me

My life, no matter how precious, is worthless if I am not free


And there were those, who never surrendered

I want to be among those who this way will be remembered

But if God keeps me alive and encourages me to continue to strive

For a better world, where freedom shines, I’ll promise, I will fight

I will dedicate everything to this noble cause, including my life

So this promise is for those, who never surrendered

I will remember you and respect you, I render

It’s sad that you can’t be here

The bells of freedom toll for all to hear


Not in all lands, not yet, not totally

You will have some new faces, new friends for company

In that internal brotherhood, in a heavenly nation

Without limitation and discrimination

Your council I seek for freedom’s re-distribution

And when there will be no need to “NEVER SURRENDER”

And still we cherish the memory of those not surrendered

When we have freedom for all, here in all lands

We might not wish to rush to join you since living is no longer hell

And we can count on eternity to catch up with us, sooner or later


By Eugene Laszlo Hegedus

Tulips with tank in public park

Eugene László Hegedüs was a 17-year-old student in Győr, Hungary, when he had to escape in November 1956. He arrived in the Buffalo area and spent six years at the boarding home at Graycliff. Hegedüs worked for 20 years as a mathematics teacher and eventually as assistant headmaster at the Calasanctius School. Maria, his wife, was also a teacher there and both of his children attended Calasanctius. Hegedüs worked for another 20 years as station manager for two local radio stations. He fills his retirement with creative endeavors, including writing several volumes of poetry related to the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. He was able to return home after 34 years. He is anxiously waiting for his 50th wedding anniversary. He also keeps busy with five grandchildren, gardening, and expanding his work on the .