Veteran's Day

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
#1
Since this coming Tuesday is Veteran's Day in the US I just wanted to take the opportunity to say a heartfelt "thank-you" to all veterans and reserve and active-duty military people. I know there are many here on the Cove. Your sacrifices are truly much appreciated by me and my family as well as countless millions of others. :bigwave:

Also, I heard on the radio this morning that all Golden Corral steakhouses in the USA (39 states I think) are offering free meals from like 5PM to closing to all veterans, reservists, and active duty military folks. No proof or ID is required -- it strictly on the honor system. Maybe you might want to take advantage of this token of appreciation by Golden Corral. (I am not in any way, shape, or form associated with them.)

I hope this message does not violate the "politics-free" rules of the Cove. Such is not my intent. :truce:
 
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Craig H.

#2
Mike, let add my thanks as well. To all of our vets and active duty people:

THANKS!!!!!

:bigwave:

Craig
 

Randy

Super Moderator
#3
The following goes for either Veterans or Memorial Day.

If you’ve ever seen the painting “Reflections” of the Vietnam Wall in Washington, you’ve seen the man standing there with his hand on the wall, mourning his dead father or brother who was killed. What he doesn’t see is the reflection from the other side showing that relative with HIS hand on the wall, touching the hand of his survivor. That painting inspired this story.

FROM THE OTHER SIDE
By Patrick Camunes

”There are so many things that are written about the Wall but never anything of being on the other side. I was inspired by the picture Reflections that I use as wallpaper on my PC and a recent story, Autumn Wall.”

At first there was no place for us to go until someone put up that Black Granite Wall. Now, everyday and night, my Brothers and my Sisters wait to see the many people from places afar file in front of this Wall. Many stopping briefly and many for hours and some that come on a regular basis. It was hard at first, not that it’s gotten any easier, but it seems that many of the attitudes towards that war that we were involved in have changed. I can only pray that the ones on the other side have learned something and more Wall’s as this one needn’t be built.

Several members of my unit and many that I did not recognize have called me to the Wall by touching my name that is engraved upon it. The tears aren’t necessary but are hard even for me to hold back.

Don’t feel guilty for not being with me, my Brothers. This was my destiny as it is yours, to be on that side of the Wall.

Touch the Wall, my Brothers, so that we can share in the memories that we had. I have learned to put the bad memories aside and remember only the pleasant times that we had together. Tell our other Brothers out there to come and visit me, not to say Good Bye but to say Hello and be together again, even for a short time and to ease that pain of loss that we all share.

Today, an irresistible and loving call comes from the Wall. As I approach I can see an elderly lady and as I get closer I recognize her.......its Momma! As much as I have looked forward to this day, I have also regretted it because I didn’t know what reaction I would have.

Next to her, I suddenly see my wife and immediately think how hard it must of been for her to come to this place and my mind floods with the pleasant memories of 30 years past. There’s a young man in a military uniform standing with his arm around her......My God!......It’s...it has to be my son. Look at him trying to be the man without a tear in his eye. I yearn to tell him how proud I am, seeing him standing tall, straight and proud in his uniform.

Momma comes closer and touches the Wall and I feel the soft and gentle touch I had not felt in so many years. Dad has crossed to this side of the Wall and through our touch, I try to convey to her that Dad is doing fine and is no longer suffering or feeling pain. I see my wife’s courage building as she sees Momma touch the Wall and she approaches and lays her hand on my waiting hand.

All the emotions, feelings and memories of three decades past flash between our touch and I tell her that it’s all right. Carry on with your life and don’t worry about me......I can see as I look into her eyes that she hears and understands me and a big burden has been lifted from her.

I watch as they lay flowers and other memories of my past. My lucky charm that was taken from me and sent to her by my CO, a tattered and worn teddy bear that I can barely remember having as I grew up as a child and several medals that I had earned and were presented to my wife. One of them is the Combat Infantry Badge that I am very proud of and I notice that my son is also wearing this medal. I had earned mine in the jungles of Vietnam and he had probably earned his in the deserts of Iraq.

I can tell that they are preparing to leave and I try to take a mental picture of them together, because I don’t know when I will see them again. I wouldn’t blame them if they were not to return and can only thank them that I was not forgotten. My wife and Momma near the Wall for one final touch and so many years of indecision, fear and sorrow are let go. As they turn to leave I feel my tears that had not flowed for so many years, form as if dew drops on the other side of the Wall.

They slowly move away with only a glance over their shoulder. My son suddenly stops and slowly returns. He stands straight and proud in front of me and snaps a salute.

Something makes him move to the Wall and he puts his hand upon the Wall and touches my tears that had formed on the face of the Wall and I can tell that he senses my presence there and the pride and the love that I have for him. He falls to his knees and the tears flow from his eyes and I try my best to reassure him that it’s all right and the tears do not make him any less of a man.

As he moves back wiping the tears from his eyes, he silently mouths, God Bless you, Dad...... God Bless, YOU, Son...... We WILL meet someday but in the meanwhile, go on your way...... There is no hurry.......There is no hurry at all.. As I see them walk off in the distance, I yell out to THEM and EVERYONE there today, as loud as I can,.........THANKS FOR REMEMBERING and as others on this side of the Wall join in, I notice that the US Flag that so proudly flies in front of us everyday, is flapping and standing proudly straight out in the wind today..................................

THANK YOU ALL FOR REMEMBERING.........
 
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Randy Stewart

#4
Thanks Randy, Thanks Mike,

My dad has passed and as most of you know my son was in Iraq (marine).
I did not serve in the Nam, I'm a cold war warrior. But when I visited "The Wall" I couldn't help but cry.
As today, too many lives have been cut short - but our freedom remains.
"They gave their tomorrows so that we may have our todays".
"All gave some, but some gave all."
 

gpainter

Quite Involved in Discussions
#5
My thanks to all those who make the ultimate sacrifice to protect the USA. We many times forget about our veterans and the horrors that they and their families endured and will endure. May God bless all nations.
 
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Cari Spears

Super Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
#6
This Veterans Day I'm not thinking about my own military service. While I'm proud of my contributions during Desert Storm - they seem miniscule in comparison to combat veterans.

My thoughts are with my brother, currently in Tel Afar(sp?). He's written to me about a couple of firefights, his unit has not lost any men, there have been a few wounded. He left for basic training right after graduating from high school. He will turn 20 in a few months. My thoughts and prayers are with him every day.

I'm thinking about my father and other Vietnam veterans. I miss the VFW Hall in Inkster that adopted our reserve unit - they housed and participated in our "Wetting the Stripes" ceremonies and our retirement parties, etc. In spite of the fact that none of them received such a welcome home, they raised money to throw us a Homecoming that brought tears to every eye, especially their fellow Vietnam Veterans who were currently serving with our unit.
 
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Tom W

Living the Dream...
#7
I too am pround to have served, and I thank you all for your support. I know everyone out there that has ever served in the military understands that "feeling". Even if your experience was not as great as mine in the military, you understand the "feeling".

The feeling is what Stew experienced at the Wall. It is the goose bumps I have now writing this. It is a connection to those before us, to those with us and those after us. I have attached the picture that was mentioned earlier. It speaks to the "feeling".

I know that it is popular to thank the military folks on Veterans Day, that is afterall the day established for that. But I would ask, as a prior service member, that we all try to thank them everyday for the country we have and the sacrifices that have been made. As I heard in a song - "All gave some, some gave all". God Bless our country and our military in harms way.

I know when I finally make my trip to DC, and I go to pay my respects at the Wall and other memorials I will shed tears; tears of sorrow, tears of anger, tears of prayers unanswered, and tears for those left on this side of the Wall that lived it. The "feeling" runs deep in me, and I know it runs deep in all of you too. One of the true measure of a military man or woman is the ability to remember the "feeling" and to preserve and pass on the "feeling". I will salute the memorials and say my silent prayers. For I have that right, that right was given to me by those I salute.

I think we all agree that the WWII Memorial that is currently being built is long overdue.

Thanks for reading my note and please remember those that gave all.
 

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mshell

#8
All of your words have given me goose bumps and brought tears to my eyes. While I have never served in the military, I am proud to be an American and I would like to offer thanks to all who have served, are serving and will serve in the future for without all of you, our country would not be the land of the free.

mshell
 

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CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#9
Thank you to each and every memeber of our armed services and support groups.

Our freedoms have been bought and paid for by the most precious gift - life.

Carol
 
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CINDY

#10
So many in my family have served, so many of our friends have served. They know we appreciate them.

But for those of you who do not, we extend our most heart felt thanks.

Also, just in case anyone out there was thinking about our troops currently serving and wants to start thinking about Christmas:

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DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
MICHIGAN ARMY NATIONAL GUARD
HEADQUARTERS 156 SIGNAL BATTALION
7400 S. HURON RIVER DRIVE
YPSILANTI, MICHIGAN 48917-7007

PRESS RELEASE October 20, 2003

Adopt a soldier for the holidays

Adrian - Company B, 156 Signal Battalion, Michigan National Guard, will be hosting "Adopt a Deployed Soldier for Christmas" and "Adopt the Child of a Deployed Soldier for Christmas" on November 6 and 7, 2003 from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM at the Adrian Armory, 230 West Maumee Street, Adrian Michigan. The public and media are invited to attend.

Adopt a Soldier

Company B, 156th Signal Battalion would like you to sponsor a service-member for Christmas. Stop by the National Guard Armory on November 6-7 and pick up a box and a pre-printed address label for a soldier stationed in Iraq. Fill the box with gifts from the suggestion list in the box or choose your own items. When the box is full, place the pre-printed soldier's address on the box and mail it out. Please ensure that the box is in the mail by November 15, so that it will arrive by Christmas.

Adopt the Child of a Deployed Soldier

Company B is also holding a toy drive for the children of the deployed soldiers. Drop off a gift at the Armory or at K-B Toys in Adrian from now until December 5, 2003. We will wrap the gifts and pass them out at our annual Christmas Party.

Currently, nearly 900 Michigan Army and Air National Guard members are serving on active duty in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. Approximately 150 of those deployed are from the 156 Signal Battalion, with units in Ypsilanti, Adrian, Monroe and Kalamazoo.

For more information contact Capt. Michael Close at (734) 483-6974.
 
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