Tuesday, August 22, 2006------------------------------------------------------------------------
Eric is doing well and looking forward to heading up into the mountains for 'training' soon. He and his girlfriend are getting along wonderful too. She says that I raised him right LOL. I told her that if he disrespects her to let me know and I will kick his butt when he is home on leave next time! He still isn't too big and tough for me to do that!!
I wanted to get back to the roots of the reason I started this blog ... which was to support the young men and women that are willing to give their lives to protect the United States of America and her people. I therefore put forth the following story I received. Is it true? I don't know but I would like to believe so. Its just a simple variation on an email story that has been circulating for quite some time. The reason that I think this particular version touched me as deeply as it did was because this is something I could easily envision Eric (or any of my children for that matter) doing. If everyone had the empahty that is shown in the following story ... the world would be a much better place to live.
The Daughter of a Soldier
Last week I was in Atlanta, Georgia attending a conference. While I was in the airport, returning home, I heard several people behind me beginning to clap and cheer. I immediately turned around and witnessed one of the greatest act's of patriotism I have ever seen.
Moving thru the terminal was a group of soldiers in their camo's, as they began heading to their gate everyone (well, almost everyone) was abruptly to their feet with their hands waving and cheering. When I saw the soldiers, probably 30-40 of them, being applauded and cheered for it hit me.
I'm not alone. I'm not the only red blooded American who still loves this country and supports our troops and their families.
Of course I immediately stopped and began clapping for these young unsung heroes who are putting their lives on the line everyday for us so we can go to school, work and home without fear or reprisal.
Just when I thought I could not be more proud of my country or of our servicemen and women a young girl, not more than 6 or 7 years old, ran up to one of the male soldiers. He kneeled down and said "hi."
The little girl then asked him if he would give something to her daddy for her. The young soldier, who didn't look any older than maybe 22 himself, said he would try and what did she want to give to her daddy?
Then suddenly the little girl grabbed the neck of this soldier, gave him the biggest hug she could muster and then kissed him on the cheek. The mother of the little girl, who said her daughter's name was Courtney, told the young soldier that her husband was a Marine and had been in Iraq for 11 months now. As the mom was explaining how much her daughter, Courtney, missed her father, the young soldier began to tear up.
When this temporarily single mom was done explaining her situation, all of the soldiers huddled together for a brief second. Then one of the other servicemen pulled out a military looking walkie-talkie.
They started playing with the device and talking back and forth on it. After about 10-15 seconds of this, the young soldier walked back over to Courtney, bent down and said this to her, "I spoke to your daddy and he told me to give this to you."
He then hugged this little girl that he had just met and gave her a kiss on the cheek. He finished by saying "your daddy told me to tell you that he loves you more than anything and he is coming home very soon."
The mom at this point was crying almost uncontrollably and as the young soldier stood to his feet he saluted Courtney and her mom. I was standing no more than 6 feet away from this entire event unfolded.
As the soldiers began to leave, heading towards their gate, people resumed their applause. As I stood there applauding and looked around, there were very few dry eyes, including my own.
That young soldier in one last act of selflessness, turned around and blew a kiss to Courtney with a tear rolling down his cheek.
We need to remember everyday all of our soldiers and their families and thank God for them and their sacrifices.
At the end of the day, it's good to be an American.
Semper fi and God bless