June 9, 2005

A Few Good Men (and Women)

The following is an e-mail that I received from a lady in my Home Education Group. For the past year we have been praying for her brother who was stationed in Iraq. He would send updates every few months and she would forward them to us. I am posting this here to remind myself that freedom comes with a price and that the sacrifices we make are never in vain. Because of this soldier and many who have gone before him, I sit in my home, FREE. I am free to worship God in the church of my choosing, homeschool my children, write my opinion in this blog, own a home, have a job and all of the day to day freedoms that I enjoy because someone else paid the price.

My boys love soldiers and whenever we see a soldier, I always strike up a conversation with them. We like to ask them questions and they love to talk with the kids. My final words to them are always, "Thank you for your service to our country and for protecting my children with that service." I am always humbled when they thank me for my support!

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Well...

The time has come to redeploy home... have a showtime for a flight in about 3 hours, so have to go get packing. This has truly been a time I will never forget, with experiences that ran the gamut from exciting to excruciating, from times of deadly seriousness and focus to moments of comic relief, from the rush of a successfully planned and executed mission with a thousand moving parts to the somber remembrance of comrades wounded or lost.

I want to thank each and every one of you (including those receiving my forwarded e-mails who I now know numbered in the hundreds who were praying for me and us all along) who supported me with a note of encouragement (some even a weekly howrya doin' e-mail!), or a card, or a care package, or even details of a life that seemed mundane to you. I can assure you that none of it was mundane to me. Not one piece. Not one card. Not one e-mail. You all were my life-line and my touch of home and country during bleak times (even though I may not have communicated those times to you) and my friends and family who I could share successes and stories of adventure with.

I am so honored to have served all of you, and proud to have served my country in a time of need with some of the finest, most honorable warriors and human beings I ever hope to meet. It has been a privilege.

With respect and gratitude,

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Should I have given you a tissue warning? Thank a soldier next time you see one. You will be blessed and so will they. Blessings given and received, what could be better!

5 comments:

Jersey Girl said...

Thank you for sharing that letter. It makes it all real, right next door. I will do as you say the next time I see a soldier. I am going to forward on to others.

gina said...

You never think to thank a soldier, but I am thankful and I'm going to start sharing my thanks with them. :)

sleeplessinoklahoma said...

That is so cool to do. I have been doing something similar for years with Viet Nam vets (my war). I always welcome them home, & if they are amenable, give them a hug. It is also very appreciated. They were spit on & so defiled when they returned stateside that it is just so appalling.
The Big Guy & I strike up conversations with soldiers in airports, etc. They really do appreciate the support.
Keep up the good work. It is a wonderful example for your boys. God willing they will never know war personally.
Blessed be....

Jules said...

I have wanted to say thanks before but chickened out! It is hard to go up to complete strangers but I realize now how much it means to them.

As my dad says, "If it weren't for our soldiers, we'd all be speaking German!" (he is such a comedian!)

Dy said...

This has always been a family tradition for us. My Dad served in WWII, and my brother in VietNam. It's normal for us to approach veterans and thank them for their work on behalf of our heritage.

DH served in the Persian Gulf, and he is always awed knowing that what he did and experienced is nothing compared with what others have done, given, and striven for in the name of Freedom. I knew I loved him when he met a WWII vet in a restaurant and said, "Thank you, sir." Good stuff.

Dy