Monday, February 28, 2011

Rest in Peace, Frank Buckles

Via the  Army Times  and the  Washington Post,
two very good articles about the passing yesterday of the last surviving World War I US veteran
Frank Buckles

You can also see more about Frank Buckles at Pershing's Last Patriot

Rest in Peace,Sir.

Our condolences to his family and friends.

and so we lose one of the last few links to the war referred to as 'The Great War'

In the last few years before his death, Frank Buckles called for "the restoration and re-dedication of the D.C. WW I memorial as a National and District of Columbia WW I memorial" as you can see here on
The World War I Memorial Foundation website

My husband and I had accidentally stumbled across the DC memorial while on a visit to the National Mall in 2007

and when I blogged about it at the time, the condition of the memorial reduced me to tears, and I asked:
..."if we allow the memorials to those who have fallen in a war to become dilapidated and in need of repairs, are we not dishonoring the memory of those who served and gave their all? "

There are several ways you can remember Frank Buckle's extraordinary life, and pay tribute to his memory.....the family has requested that contributions be made in his honor to Survivor Quest , the non profit which is behind the documentary about Frank's life

and might I also suggest that you consider contacting your Senators and Congress members, to let them know you support the Frank Buckles World War I Memorial Act legislation, to rededicate the District of Columbia WW I memorial to include the wording "National World War I Memorial" , to honor all those like Mr. Buckles, who served in that 'war to end all wars'.

Make Military Family TIME's 2011 Person of the Year?

If you haven't heard about the
(h/t )
via the Like It For Time website:

The letter to TIME Magazine is below.
 Revise at will and then copy, paste, print, sign, and put in the mail on Friday, March 4th.
  • If you think you'll forget to mail the letter on Friday and you'd rather mail it today because this is when you'll remember, mail away.
  • If you want your letter to the editor to be considered for publication in TIME Magazine, be sure to include your full name, address, and phone number in the letter.
  • OPPORTUNITY TO WIN A KINDLE: Share the letter - with enthusiasm! - on your blog or facebook page and encourage people to mail it in, and you'll be entered to win the latest model Kindle. (One winner.) Used just once, it's as close to brand-new as it can be without being in the original, unopened package, and it even comes with a leather case. TO BE ENTERED TO WIN: Email with the link to the blog or facebook page where you encourage others to send their letter to TIME. Write "letter share" in the subject line. The winner will be announced on March 4th on Enlisted Spouse Radio.
  • MAIL YOUR LETTER TO: TIME Magazine Letters / Time & Life Building /Rockefeller Center / New York, NY 10020
  • THANK YOU. Your participation is both necessary and greatly appreciated. Have fun, and good luck to all of us!
Dear TIME Magazine Editor(s),

I’m writing this letter to ask you to consider the military family as your 2011 TIME Person of the Year. If you accept nominations from the public/your readers, please consider this an official nomination.

Military families will be the first to say they don’t want to be honored or praised, but I understand Person of the Year isn’t an honor; it’s a “recognition of somebody’s effect on the world,” as Richard Stengel has said.

I also understand Person of the Year is, as another TIME editor has said, “given to the person, group, or thing that has most influenced the culture or the news during the past year.”

Evidence of the military family’s impact on recent news and popular culture can be found in the efforts of Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden to raise awareness of the military family, in Oprah Winfrey’s multiple shows honoring the military family, in the upcoming fifth season of Lifetime network’s “Army Wives,” and in the E! Entertainment channel special, “E!Investigates: Military Wives.” Any time the wars in the Middle East are in the news, so is the American military family.

Regarding the military family’s effect on the world, Rudy Giuliani was chosen for Person of the Year following the September 11 attacks because he “embodied what was really most important, what we learned about ourselves, which was that we could recover,” explained a TIME editor.

The military family embodies what is most important after a decade of war and multiple deployments: a resilient and unifying force even as the families grow weary of being separated - sometimes permanently - year after year, those years apart filled with agonizing anxiety and uncertainty about the future of their families. That resiliency speaks volumes about who we are.

When the American Soldier was chosen for 2003 Person of the Year, it wasn’t for making the news. It was, according to TIME, “[f]or uncommon skills and service, for the choices each one of them has made and the ones still ahead, for the challenge of defending not only our freedoms but those barely stirring half a world away.”

According to a February 2009 study conducted by Boston University’s Sloan Work and Family Research Network, “43.2% of active duty forces have one or more children.” Without a military family care plan—siblings, grandparents, spouses, or others to care for those children—nearly half of our deployed forces would be rendered useless.

The challenges the families of service members experience don’t include the direct threat of mortar rounds and IEDs, but they do include the 24-hour awareness that mortar rounds or IEDs could kill the person they love - their parent, their child, their best friend - any minute of any day, as well as the unique task of trying to maintain a sense of normalcy for children who have a revolving parent and a home environment that is in a perpetual state of flux.

I hope you’ll give this nomination the serious consideration it warrants.


Please pass the word about this, won't you?and Thank You.

Celebrating today!

Celebrating our wedding anniversary today
Celebrating Three Years

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Two Posts Worth Checking Out

After the recent release of the Army's January Suicide Data

I came across two very good posts, related to the topics of 'asking for help' and suicide,
which seemed to me worth passing along:

From The Unknown Soldiers blog the post Badge of Honor introduced me to someone unexpected who asked for help, and now advocates for others in the military to do the same.

and from the Off the Base blog  A Journey from the Brink of Suicide

Friday, February 25, 2011

"The Christmas They Never Had"

                     (photo from 2008 wreath laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery)
It's Friday, time for a reminder about Wreaths Across America's program to attempt to lay wreaths on all 330,000 + graves at Arlington
"The Christmas They Never Had"

And this is the way the wreaths would be laid upon the wreath at a time, by volunteers.
To honor and remember those who gave their lives in service to our country.

A Documentary I would love to see

I came across this article this morning
Film tells true story of survival and wartime romance

which led me to the website for
Surviving Hitler: A Love Story

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Welcome Home! to..

To Afghanistan and Back  And Back Again

Welcome Home! and Thank You..for the job you did, and also for blogging about it, so we could share in some of the highlights of your past year.

Support for Military Kids, and now Teens

My alert Mom sent a link to an article from the Minneapolis Star-Tribune
Teens in military families finally have voice by Kelly Smith

and that led me to also check out this website
Operation Military Kids

If I was aware of this before now? I had forgotten this service existed, for the children of military families. Be sure to check out your state link on OMK's site, and see what's available in the area near you.

From the VFW..

The Veterans of Foreign Wars is proud to announce the Department winners of the 2010-2011 Voice of Democracy audio-essay competition. This year's theme is "Does My Generation Have a Role in America's Future?" The following students are competing for a chance to win up to $30,000 in college scholarships and other incentives. Check out the winner from your area.

2010-2011 Voice of Democracy State Winners

Congratulations! to all the State Winners!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Wednesday Hero

Cmd. David John Sperling
Cmd. David John Sperling
78 years old from Pensacola, Florida
Attach Squadron 153
April 3, 1929 - March 17, 2008
U.S. Navy

From the citation upon being awarded the Silver Star:

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Commander David John Sperling (NSN: 0-555189), United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action as the Pilot of a jet aircraft while attached to Attack Squadron ONE HUNDRED FIFTY-THREE (VA-153), embarked in U.S.S. CORAL SEA (CVA-43). On 25 October 1967, Commander Sperling flew as a major group leader in a coordinated Air Wing assault on the Phuc Yen Air Base near Hanoi, North Vietnam. Being the prime operating base for MiG fighter aircraft, Phuc Yen was defended by the most concentrated and formidable array of surface-to-air missiles, anti-aircraft artillery and automatic weapons to be found in all of North Vietnam. Courageously leading his group of attack aircraft over 120 miles of hostile territory into this bastion of defensive armor, Commander Sperling exhibited outstanding airmanship and unwavering determination while maneuvering for the highly vulnerable attack position. In spite of the unprecedented barrage of surface-to-air missiles and anti-aircraft fire, he calmly established the essential bombing pattern and delivered his ordnance with exceptional accuracy on the revetted enemy airplanes to destroy or damage several parked MiG aircraft. His resolute actions and professional skill set the tone for the remainder of his force and succeeded in turning a potentially disastrous situation into a highly successful assault on the enemy. Commander Sperling's gallant and inspirational leadership upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

Cmd. Sperling's obituary.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.

We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Yay! 2011 Milblog Conference website up and running!

via  the word is out
2011 Milblog Conference website and registration launched

You can find the website  Here

(and I'll place a link over in the sidebar)

So excited! as it looks like I'll be able to attend this year!! :)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

"Free Mail"!..and" it's a small world after all"..

So, I got home from work yesterday and had the unexpected surprise of a piece of 'free mail' waiting for me:)
('Free mail', for those of you who don't know, is how we troop supporters refer to the letters we receive back from someone who is's free for them to mail a letter to us from a war zone.)

In the 'life is too cool' and 'it's a small world' departments , it turned out that the soldier I had sent the letter to had all kinds of family and personal ties to the region where I live... as she put it:

"I thought you might find this amazing that we have this in common. Who would have thought that 7,000 miles away, we were close by?"......and she ended  with .."it was good to hear from someone close to home!"

She was writing back to say how much my letter had brightened her day....and it certainly brightened my whole evening, (after a tough day at work,too! )to have received this unexpected and heartwarming 'thank you' from a deployed soldier....and all because I had taken a few moments to send a letter of support and appreciation to a stranger serving our country, to tell someone I'd never met that 'you and those serving with you are not forgotten, by those of us back here at home"

You know where I'm going with this, don't you? :) 

You can send your Own letter of support to someone...(.there's no guarantee you'll get 'free mail' in return, remember, you're writing to someone in a war zone, who's kind of busy!).....but if you want to brighten a stranger's day and support the troops?...there are several ways you can do this.

If you are already a member of Soldiers Angels? you can check out the Letter Writing Team

or, if you just want to go by , that's another great way to support those serving with just a simple letter or note.

Think about it, won't you?

Friday, February 18, 2011

"The Christmas They Never Had"

                                    (Photo from 2008 Wreath Laying at Arlington National Cemetery)

Time for a Friday reminder of  Wreaths Across America's program to attempt to cover all the graves of our nation's fallen heroes... "The Christmas They Never Had"  in December 2011 at Arlington.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

"Great minds think alike"lol..Thanks! Airman Mom

I see Airman Mom had the same idea, posting blogs worth checking out to pass on to others, please go check her post out
So Many Blogs,So Little Time....

A Farewell and a Hello

As one favorite blogger prepares to return home
The Sand Docs-The Final Countdown
(and safe travels home to all of the team! Thank you! for the job you've been doing)

he introduces us to another blogger preparing to deploy shortly
Surfing Surgeon Stuck in the Sand

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Post Was Suggested By Michael

Petty Officer First Class Robert R. Scott
Petty Officer First Class Robert R. Scott
26 years old from Massillion, Ohio
December 7, 1941
U.S. Navy

Robert Raymond Scott joined the U.S. Navy in 1938. Was was assigned to the U.S.S. California and was stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. On December 7, 1941 the California was hit by a torpedo during the attack. While other personnel were evacuated, Machinist's Mate First Class Scott remained at his station. He didn't survive. For his actions he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. And the U.S. Navy named the destroyer escort USS Scott (DE-214) in his honor in 1943.

From his citation:

For conspicuous devotion to duty, extraordinary courage and complete disregard of his own life, above and beyond the call of duty, during the attack on the Fleet in Pearl Harbor by Japanese forces on 7 December 1941. The compartment, in the U.S.S. California, in which the air compressor, to which Scott was assigned as his battle station, was flooded as the result of a torpedo hit. The remainder of the personnel evacuated that compartment but Scott refused to leave, saying words to the effect "This is my station and I will stay and give them air as long as the guns are going."

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

For the link to our PhotoCardsDirect Valentine to our Troops, click  Here

You can send your own free E-card to the troops (and help Soldiers Angels in the process)
Click  HERE for details

You can also, through  AOL , send a virtual  Valentine gift and AOL will make a donation to the USO,
click  HERE  for information on how to do that :)

and Happy Valentine's Day!!

Friday, February 11, 2011

"The Christmas They Never Had"

                       (Picture from 2008 Wreath Laying in Arlington)

                       It's Friday, time for a reminder about Wreaths Across America's hopes to cover
all 330,000 + graves at Arlington in December 2011
                          "The Christmas They Never Had"

Love the Troops with Free E-cards

Thanks to  patriotic Americans can send a free Valentine's Day e-card to anyone and make money for  Soldiers' Angels  care packages at the same time!

Read more about it HERE

and here's  a link  to one of the free e-cards we designed :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Woot! Best Valentine/Anniversary Gift Ever from..

Best Husband in the World, of course:)

Tony surprised me today with ELEVEN books from my Amazon Wishlist

(yes, I know all the 'cool kids' have Kindle's or Nook's, but I'm still 'old school' so far :)

the books are:

The Nightingale of Mosul: A Nurse's Journey of Service, Struggle, and War

Northern Disclosure

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

With the Old Breed, at Peleliu and Okinawa Summary | E.B. Sledge |

No Time for Fear: Voices of American Military Nurses in World War II

Biggest Brother: The Life Of Major Dick Winters, The Man Who Led The Band of Brothers

Simon Johnson& James Kwak's13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown [Hardcover](2010)  ('brother recommended:)

(WAR) BY JUNGER, SEBASTIAN(Author)Twelve[Publisher]Hardcover{War} on 11 May -2010

and then there are three that I read a Long time ago, and actually loved so much that I bought the set for my brother as a gift,too, and then somehow both our sets got lost along life's highway....good science fiction, and although I've since discovered there's a 'prequel' book....I first fell in love with just the trilogy and Yay! I finally have it again:)

Tripods Trilogy (The White Mountains / The City of Gold and Lead / The Pool of Fire)

(you know, I've often thought this would be a good set to send to someone deployed)

so, now I just need to finish reading
One Dog at a Time: Saving the Strays of Afghanistan  (from my Christmas gifts)
and then start on my Valentine/Anniversary gifts:)

oh, and in case you were wondering?
I apparently bought Tony a set of some kind of tools,LOL, for his Valentine/Anniversary gift
 which was also a surprise to me! :)

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Post Was Suggested By Cindy

SSgt. Ronell Bradley
SSgt. Ronell Bradley
U.S. Army

On Sept. 21, 2005, SSgt. Ronell Bradley gave two legs and part of a hand for his country when the Humvee he was riding in was hit by a roadside bomb and now he needs our help to get his handicapped-accessible home built. If you're in the Charlotte, South Carolina area you can help. You can read the piece here.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

National Resource Directory

Back in November, I had written about the NRD state widgets  but in case you haven't taken the time to check out the National Resource directory website itself ?

Here's an article from the US Department of Defense explaining a little more about the website
Directory Links Wounded Warriors, Families to Resources By Elaine Wilson

I've also added a link in the sidebar, under the NRD Virginia widget, that links to the main website.

Monday, February 07, 2011

AFIRM (Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine)

Via a friend and fellow nurse (and a fellow 'Kathy':)....she forwarded this awesome information about

Go check the website out, this is fascinating.

Nurse's Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery

One thing I learned while recently reading
We Band of Angels: The Untold Story of American Nurses Trapped on Bataan by the Japanese

was that there is a section at Arlington called the  Nurse's Section

While I'm distressed by my own ignorance (how did I Not know this before now?) it is definitely a section I plan to visit the next time we are in the Northern Virginia area.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Worth Watching..An American nurse in WW I

Just finished watching this episode on Hulu

Great Americans An American Nurse at War

about an American  Red Cross nurse during World War I.

Definitely worth watching.

News from the 9/11 Memorial

If you haven't ever checked out the website for the  National 9/11 Memorial in New York,
the website is  HERE

Via their newsletter, I came across both this book
Miss You, Pat by Sharon Watts  
a remembrance of FDNY Captain Patrick J. Brown.

and this touching story on their Memo blog
On the Wings of Memory, Flight Attendant's Story Makes a Full Circle

We Will Never Forget.

Friday, February 04, 2011

Friday Reminder "The Christmas They Never Had" Wreaths Across America

                                      (Picture from 2008 Wreath Laying in Arlington National Cemetery)

It's time again for a Friday reminder about Wreaths Across America's
"The Christmas They Never Had"
to attempt to cover all 330,000+ graves at Arlington National Cemetery in December 2011.

Please spread the word!

Belated Birthday and Anniversary Wishes to..

(I've been ill for part of this week, so missed posting these earlier)

Both a gentleman who served in WW I and the Army Nurse Corps celebrated 110 years this past week.

On Feb. 1, Frank Buckles celebrated his 110th birthday, and via I came across
this article about Mr. Buckles    Belated Birthday wishes to Mr. Buckles!

On Feb.2 , the Army Nurse Corps celebrated it's 110th can read more about this on the
Army Nurse Corps Blog  and  the Army Surgeon General's Blog

and you can find the Army Nurse Corps History page  HERE

(as many of you know, I'm a Licensed Practical Nurse, so it's always interesting for me to read about, and to celebrate, my 'sister nurses' and their accomplishments )

Also, I have a special place in my heart for the Army Nurse Corps because my aunt Lynn served , I had blogged about her service on the original version of this blog back in 2006
For My Aunt..A Thank You to an Army Nurse Corps Vietnam Veteran

And just this past week, I finished reading

which was an excellent book, and it was illuminating to read about these nurses I had never heard of before, and their trials and survival during wartime service.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Wednesday Hero

Gunnery Sgt. Richard Romo
Gunnery Sgt. Richard Romo
U.S. Marines

Gunnery Sgt. Richard Romo, team chief with Civil Affairs attached to 1st Battalion, 8th Marines, Regimental Combat Team 2, speaks to several Afghans during a patrol through the bazaar in Musa Qal'eh, Jan. 25. During the patrol the Marines inspected the location of an up-coming traffic circle in the bazaar.

Photo Courtesy United States Marine Corps.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.

We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

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Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Philanthroper and 'Give an Hour'

Via my web-savvy, 'tweeting' brother-in-law(thanks,Adam:)...I was introduced to a new 'daily deal' site,
with a twist

as they say here, Philanthroper  ..."shares the story of a new 501(c)3 nonprofit every day. And if you'd like, you can give them $1. We're trying to make doing good a habit.."

Why did awesome brother-in-law Adam wish to share this with my 'non-tweeting' self?

Because the January 31 featured charity was a non profit called Give an Hour

and what is  Give an Hour ?  It's a non-profit "providing free mental health services to U.S. Military personnel and families affected by the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan "

So, although the 'deal of the day' has passed by on Philanthroper for Give an Hour?
This post is to tell you about two worthy sites to check out, and then...

Spread the word about them!!

Check out  Give an Hour  more thoroughly (and you can still donate to them directly on their website)

and Philanthroper can be found on Facebook and Twitter  and their website is  Here