FORT HOOD — Christmas is too commercial. Thanksgiving is too much work. But the Fourth of July, that’s a holiday worth celebrating, said Al Underwood, 55, of Bruceville.

Underwood, a disabled veteran who spent 15 years in the Army, was stationed at Fort Lewis, Wash., and spent several years in Germany.

He and his wife, Sue Underwood, drove 100 miles to Fort Hood on Thursday from their home outside Waco to share in the festivities with the U.S. Army.

“You don’t have to worry about people getting into fights,” said Sue Underwood, 55. “People are much politer.”

Independence Day, the celebration of the founding of U.S. democracy, has been the Underwoods’ favorite holiday since they celebrated it in a foreign land: Nuremberg, Germany.

The couple, homesick for their native soil at the time, was moved that American patriotism could be felt so many miles away.

So driving 100 miles for a fireworks show isn’t so bad.

“We just like to be around our military brethren,” Underwood said. “When people come together for a common cause that is the essential.”

Contact ​Brandon Janes at or (254) 501-7552

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