Monday, November 12, 2012
Thank you Veterans, Veteran’s Day 2012
Yesterday our church dedicated three new flagpoles in front of our church to our veterans and active servicemen. It was a beautiful ceremony and honored our 84 year old member of Trinity Life Baptist Church and WWII veteran Carl Wood. He is a really sweet guy and funny. When he spoke he started at his birth and covered his 94 years but it wasn’t too long, he was great. He also worked at the Veteran’s Hospital for thirty years after he got out of the Army, the last three as the director (head honcho). I, for one, am very impressed. I’ve only known him as a sweet old retiree. He even worked at Sam’s Club thirteen years after he retired from the hospital opting not to sit home but staying busy. If he had not begun losing his eyesight he would probably still be working. We were even on Channel 4 news at 9 last night. Well, not me but Mike made it on there along with quite a few members and of course, Carl and his lovely daughter, Barbara Ripley (they kept calling her Riley so I wanted to set that record straight).
My husband was asked to speak during the first service. The Senior pastor who was not in the first service told me three people came up and told him how moving Mike’s speech was so he asked him to speak again at the second service. I’m so proud of my husband for so many reasons and one of them is his heart for God. He wore his uniform and looked so dashing. The picture above is just as he said amen in the dismissal prayer. So Pastor was not being disrepectful by not bowing his head. The other pic had him looking at his watch so I thought this one was better. Didn't want you to think Mike was a longwinded pray-er. Then we moved outside for the dedication and he was asked to pray again. Guess Pastor Russell thought he need to get prayed up.
Here is his speech from the first service in case you missed it or just want to hear from a veteran in the Viet Nam era about his service experience. Believe me, it’s worth it.
Background data, Mike and I knew each all our lives because our dad’s worked together. When he was stationed in Japan, he wrote a letter to my dad and mailed it to the house. He said if anyone in your family would like to write, I’d love to get letters from home. Mom swore he was aiming that at me which I knew she was crazy but I wrote to him anyway because I’ve always had a bit of a crush on him anyway. You know, the older man and all. So that’s how we ended up married. It was love at first letter.
We are from a family of servers. My dad was in the army and went to India, Mike’s dad was in the Army Air force and went to Italy, Mike's mom was in the Marines and went to Hawaii as a pastry chef, and my son went to Egypt and Iraq as a medic. And we have lots of friend that served as well. The picture below is from church yesterday. My husband is the one in uniform next to the lady in the red blouse (that’s me) and my friend, Val, is standing in front of me, her husband Joe was in the Air Force. The lady next to Val holding the baby is Jill. She has three boys and her husband Jonathan has been to Afghanistan so many times I’ve lost count but he is at this moment in the states on his way home for good. He has or is receiving a medal (or medals) for saving the lives of many people in a suicide attack on our service men not too long ago. He was injured as well but made it back to keep fighting. Praise God for his bravery and service.
So today, on this Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2012, I say thank you to all our veterans and active duty service members for serving our country. Thank you for the sacrifices you’ve had to make and thank you to the families for their sacrifice as well, and sometimes the ultimate sacrifice. Our country would not be free today were it not for our men and women who serve.